(Star Trek: Discovery #2)
by Dayton Ward (2017)
An original novel based upon the new Star Trek TV series.
It is 2246, ten years prior to the Battle at the Binary Stars, and an aggressive contagion is ravaging the food supplies of the remote Federation colony Tarsus IV and the eight thousand people who call it home. Distress signals have been sent, but any meaningful assistance is weeks away. Lieutenant Commander Gabriel Lorca and a small team assigned to a Starfleet monitoring outpost are caught up in the escalating crisis, and bear witness as the colony’s governor, Adrian Kodos, employs an unimaginable solution in order to prevent mass starvation.
Using two of the main characters of the new Star Trek: Discovery, Gabriel Lorca and Philippa Georgiou, this is set 10 years before of the beginning of the new TV series. There are cameos of a young James T. Kirk and Captain Robert April.
The story of this novel is based on the events developed in the TV episode “The Conscience of the King” of Star Trek: The Original Series. In the episode, Captain Kirk crosses paths with an actor suspected of having been a mass-murdering dictator many years before.
The book tells the story of Kodos on Tarsus IV. The colony suffers a fungus plague which contaminates all crops along with food storage and food processors. It was imminent that the whole population will suffer from hunger…
This could have been told in a single 45 minute episode of the TV show. But here it is expanded out to a novel of over 100,000 words. There is a lot of padding with back story and character profiles. In the hands of a tough editor, it would have been significantly shorter. Not that it’s a bad or slow read, it just does not have the expanse and impact of other Star Trek novels I have read.