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Saturday, 21. April 2007 - 14:27

“Avenger” by William Shatner

Dieser Beitrag ist auch in deutsch verfügbar (empfohlen).

All good things are generally known three. Maybe that's the reason why trilogies are so popular? And maybe that's the reason why these last parts are mostly something special? If that appears to the first Star Trek novel trilogy of William Shatner, too? Let's see.

Photo of the book cover


The Enterprise-E has an unusual mission: She's part of a blockade of ships, that should has to avoid that other ships can leave or get into the sector. Because a Virogen breaked out and it's possible that it's destroying the whole population of the federation. But there's an incident with another federation shop, that was destroying itself and Captain Jean-Luc Picard and his crew hit on multiple puzzles, that must have something to the Virogen. And it shapes up that the virus is part of plan made by a group of terrorists.

In The ashes of Eden James T. Kirk felt in an immortal love with the half-klingon, half-romulan woman called Teilani. She is dying on her homeplanet Chal, because the planet is also infected with the virus. Some days before her death, a strange vulcan healer is bringing some leaves, that can at least pause the sichness. But alone the elusive character and the excluse interest in Teilani let the starfleet officers think, that's something strange going on here and that the this healer is knowing more abour the virus, than he wants to tell...


The last part of the first Shatner trilogy – One is expecting big, bombastic, never seen stuff – and some answers to questions which came up in the first two parts.
And Shatner did his job very well: The story is about nothing less than the doom of the federation. But the danger doesn't come from “usual attackers”, it's comming with a virus, that is not so natural as it looks like.

The book has everything what Star Trek is about and a lot that especially the medium book can do, but the episodes can't: The Borg, some special Borg, Kirk and Picard in one story, a extensive story, love, humour and so on.

In typical Shatner-manner he nicely takes together a lot good properties and characters from TOS and TNG. There are also some new characters, that fit good into the story and whose partly existent connection to the past of Kirk and co were also good ideas.
Spock gets a big C-plot, that is offering a lot insigh into the past of him and his parents. At first, this part has no connection to the other strands, but it doesn't feel weird.
You will also get some stories to read about Kirks past: This brings also some nice indirectnesses and interrelated pages of thoughts and events, which appeared in some TOS episodes. Kirk sometimes rethinks his past decisions, which brings a reflective tone into the act.

To the end this thoughts are going to be nearly philosopical, when Kirk is thinking about the actions of his enemies, perhaps he can understand the decisions they made. I have this theory, that Shatner perhaps thought that these lines could have been his last activity as Kirk, because the trilogy was on its end and it was unlikely that he will return into a TV episode of Star Trek. Maybe that part was written in a time, in which he didn't know that the publisher wants him to write more Star Trek Kirk novells. According to this these parts sound very sentimental, but that's only demonstrating the humanity of the captain – I liked that.

There were some few critic points: Some situations are just to simple to solve, even for Kirk.
Of course a prison cell whose occupants have the names Kirk and Spock is not really sure. But the story makes up the jailbreak to easy. After all we're talking about modern vulcan holographic technology, that was invented in the post TNG era. That shouldn't be fakeable so easy.

And the idea, that Spock is accepting his humanity in such an extreme matter and acts not even in a rudimentary vulcan kind, is for me a bit too “unrealistic”. Yes, I think it's possible that Spock is becoming a little more human and more unlogical, when he gets older. But in this book he is almost acting like a human.

And the biggest faux pas: McCoy is on board again. I didn't like that idea in the last book and it wasn't necessary in this one, too, and it's already a bit absurd: To genius federation doctors are thinking that they need some weeks for a certain experiment and abruptly McCoy is coming through the door and the result of the experiment is available within hours. That's why I'm saying: Let McCoy finally die. I really like the character, but the whole thing is to attached and I always had the impression that Shatner does this for only reason: To have the old trio together, agian.


The last part of the trilogy features on 424 pages (german version of the book) not only a good story and a dignified ending but also it's a book that calls itself a Star Trek book rightly: It's not only entertainment, it has some parts that make you reflective. After the end of the book I was thinking some time about the last pages, in which some very actual topics like terrorism and the question “Are some opinions for that others are even dying really wrong or right?” are discussed.

That's why the book is getting 3.5 of 5 points.

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