Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Trek Lit 2013: Year in Review

It's that time again! Time to say good-bye to the year that was 2013, and hello to a brand-new year!

How was 2013 in Trek novels? In my opinion, this was a good year. We got some exciting stories set in the Original Series period, kicked off the early years of the Federation thanks to Christopher Bennett's A Choice of Futures, had a terrific time-twisting adventure in Dayton Ward's From History's Shadow, and closed out the year with an exciting, five-part miniseries that advanced the Next Generation and Deep Space Nine post-Nemesis era considerably.

In my own life, 2013 saw me relocate to Calgary, Alberta. I'm enjoying it here for the most part! I'm still a little far from my family and a lot of my friends, but not quite as far as I was when I lived in Korea. Also this year, some friends of mine launched a couple of projects: Patrol Tech and Patrol Films! I'm assisting with the social media aspect. I posted one of their videos earlier this week. Check it out if you haven't already! And while you're at it, check out the Facebook pages for Patrol Tech and Patrol Films, and toss a "like" their way if you like what you see! Patrol Tech offers computer and tech advice (with a little humor thrown in), while Patrol Films is a sort of catch-all for small film projects and shorts. We're really excited about them, and we're hoping 2014 is a banner year for both!

This past year, I also joined the staff of TrekCore.com as the Trek Literature editor. Thanks to my work with them, I've been able to fulfill a fan's dream and interview a number of the authors that contribute the wonderful world of Star Trek fiction and non-fiction books. In addition, Trek Core has republished a number of my reviews! Links to the interviews and reviews on Trek Core are below:

Interviews:

Dayton Ward (August 2013)
Kirsten Beyer, Part One (August 2013)
Kirsten Beyer, Part Two (August 2013)
David R. George III (August 2013)
Una McCormack (September 2013)
David Mack (October 2013)
Marc Cushman (October 2013)


Reviews:

Star Trek: Enterprise: Rise of the Federation: A Choice of Futures by Christopher L. Bennett
These Are The Voyages: TOS, Season One by Marc Cushman
Fan Phenomena: Star Trek edited by Bruce E. Drushel
Star Trek: The Original Series: From History's Shadow by Dayton Ward
Star Trek: The Fall: Revelation and Dust by David R. George III
Star Trek: The Fall: The Crimson Shadow by Una McCormack


Below you'll find the list of every Trek book I reviewed this year, along with links to those reviews. This is the first year that I didn't restrict myself to fiction; in addition to the usual line-up of novels, I also reviewed the non-fiction titles These Are The Voyages: TOS, Season One by Marc Cushman and Fan Phenomena: Star Trek, a collection of essays on Trek fandom edited by Bruce E. Drushel.

New releases are in bold and marked with an asterisk.


January

*Cold Equations, Book 3 of 3: The Body Electric by David Mack (Star Trek: The Next Generation)
Errand of Fury, Book One: Seeds of Rage by Kevin Ryan (Star Trek: The Original Series)
Errand of Fury, Book Two: Demands of Honor by Kevin Ryan (Star Trek: The Original Series)
Errand of Fury, Book Three: Sacrifices of War by Kevin Ryan (Star Trek: The Original Series)





February

*Allegiance in Exile by David R. George III (Star Trek: The Original Series)
Federation by Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens (TOS and TNG crossover)
Last Full Measure by Michael A. Martin and Andy Mangels (Star Trek: Enterprise)








March

*Devil's Bargain by Tony Daniels (Star Trek: The Original Series)
In the Name of Honor by Dayton Ward (Star Trek: The Original Series)
*The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow (Star Trek: The Next Generation e-book)









April

*The Weight of Worlds by Greg Cox (Star Trek: The Original Series)
How Much For Just the Planet? by John M. Ford (Star Trek: The Original Series)
Chain of Attack by Gene DeWeese (Star Trek: The Original Series)









May

*The Folded World by Jeff Mariotte (Star Trek: The Original Series)
The Vulcan Academy Murders by Jean Lorrah (Star Trek: The Original Series)
The Belly of the Beast by Dean Wesley Smith (Star Trek: S.C.E. #1)
Fatal Error by Keith R.A. DeCandido (Star Trek: S.C.E. #2)
Hard Crash by Christie Golden (Star Trek: S.C.E. #3)
Interphase, Part One of Two by Dayton Ward and Kevin Dilmore (Star Trek: S.C.E. #4)
*Star Trek Into Darkness by Alan Dean Foster (Film novelization)





June

*The Shocks of Adversity by William Leisner (Star Trek: The Original Series)
*Rise of the Federation: A Choice of Futures by Christopher L. Bennett (Star Trek: Enterprise)










July

A Time to Be Born by John Vornholt (Star Trek: The Next Generation)
A Time to Die by John Vornholt (Star Trek: The Next Generation)










August

*From History's Shadow by Dayton Ward (Star Trek: The Original Series)
*These Are the Voyages: TOS, Season One by Marc Cushman with Susan Osborn









September

*Revelation and Dust by David R. George III (Star Trek: The Fall, Book One)
*Fan Phenomena: Star Trek - Edited by Bruce E. Drushel
Avatar, Book One of Two by S.D. Perry (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine)








October

*The Crimson Shadow by Una McCormack (Star Trek: The Fall, Book Two)
Avatar, Book Two of Two by S.D. Perry (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine)










November

*A Ceremony of Losses by David Mack (Star Trek: The Fall, Book Three)
Interphase, Part Two of Two by Dayton Ward and Kevin Dilmore (Star Trek: S.C.E. #5)
Cold Fusion by Keith R.A. DeCandido (Star Trek: S.C.E. #6)
Invincible, Part One of Two by David Mack and Keith R.A. DeCandido (Star Trek: S.C.E. #7)
Invincible, Part Two of Two by David Mack and Keith R.A. DeCandido (Star Trek: S.C.E #8)
*The Poisoned Chalice by James Swallow (Star Trek: The Fall, Book Four)




December

Section 31: Abyss by David Weddle and Jeffrey Lang (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine)
Imzadi by Peter David (Star Trek: The Next Generation)
Mission Gamma, Book One of Four: Twilight by David R. George III (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine)
*A Very Klingon Khristmas by Paul Ruditis, Illustrated by Patrick Faricy
The Wounded Sky by Diane Duane (Star Trek: The Original Series)







Best Trek novel of 2013:

What was the best Star Trek novel of 2013? Certainly, there were many excellent entries to choose from. Runners-up to the top prize include the superb The Fall: The Poisoned Chalice by James Swallow and the time-twisting The Original Series: From History's Shadow by Dayton Ward. 2013 truly was a great year for Trek fiction. It was very close, but in my humble opinion, top spot has to go to:

Star Trek: The Fall: The Crimson Shadow by Una McCormack!

The Crimson Shadow was expertly written, with the perfect balance of character and action. Una's explorations of Cardassian society are so enthralling, and speaking as both a social studies major and a life-long Star Trek fan, her work is a true pleasure to read! Click here to read my review of this excellent novel.

The Fall: The Crimson Shadow by Una McCormack: in my opinion, the best of 2013.
2014 is already looking to be an interesting year in Star Trek fiction. For one thing, it seems as though we'll have a little more diversity in the titles being offered. A little less TOS-heavy, with a few series we haven't seen in a little while being featured.

Following the completion of The Fall, we have the much-anticipated continuation of the Voyager relaunch, with Kirsten Beyer's Protectors coming at the end of January. I'm definitely excited to see the continuation of some of the plot threads from her previous Voyager books!

Later in the year, we have a continuation of Christopher L. Bennett's Rise of the Federation. The second book in the series, Tower of Babel, arrives in late March.

Another interesting highlight for me is One Constant Star, an entry in The Lost Era and featuring the Enterprise-B. Written by David R. George III, One Constant Star has prompted me to do a re-read of two novels featuring that ship and her captain(s): The Captain's Daughter by Peter David and The Lost Era: Serpents Among the Ruins, also by David R. George III.

Other areas of excitement: Seekers by David Mack and writing partners Dayton Ward and Kevin Dilmore is coming! Mid-2014 will see the first two books of this series, a sort of sequel to the excellent Vanguard series. VERY excited for these!

Also, Jeffrey Lang will be returning to continue the story of Data. You may recall that David Mack's Cold Equations trilogy was a sequel to Lang's earlier novel, Immortal Coil. I'm really happy to see Lang return to continue Data's story post-Cold Equations.

One interesting trend in 2014 looks to be a rise in the number of e-book exclusives. 2012 and 2013 each featured an e-book only release, but 2014 steps that up to at least three. In March, we get Titan: Absent Enemies by John Jackson Miller. Then, in April, Seasons of Light and Darkness by Michael A. Martin, an Original Series story. And finally, we get The More Things Change, another Original Series tale, from Scott Pearson in July.

You can check out all of the new releases for 2014 by clicking here. You can also pre-order all of them from Amazon!

I'm looking forward to an excellent year in 2014! Thank you to you, my readers, for being awesome and following my little internet ramblings. I appreciate you all!

Happy New Year, and all the best in 2014!