Monday, January 23, 2006

Star Trek: Gemini

I like Star Trek novels. I've read a bunch of them over the years, going all the way back to the Bantam collections by James Blish that were published when the original series was still on the air. (Those were short stories, not novels, but still, you can see that I've been reading Star Trek fiction for a long time.)

Just as I tend to prefer the original series when it comes to the TV episodes, I like the novels set in that era as well. I just read GEMINI, a recent Trek novel by Mike W. Barr, and really enjoyed it. Barr comes up with an intriguing premise -- a planet is about to have an election to decide whether or not it will join the Federation, and Captain Kirk and company are on hand to make sure there are no problems -- then complicates it by having the hereditary rulers of the planet be a pair of conjoined twins with psychic abilities, then complicates things still more with smuggling, political protests, kidnapping, and finally murder. Barr, who wrote the wonderful comic book mystery series THE MAZE AGENCY, does full justice to this twisty plot and wraps things up with a classic gathering of the suspects as Kirk unravels the mystery. On top of this, he does a fine job of capturing the personalities of the characters. This is as good a Star Trek novel as I've read in a long time.

Speaking of THE MAZE AGENCY, that series has been relaunched recently. I have the first issue on hand and plan to read and comment on it soon.


Carl V. Anderson said...

Looks interesting, I'll have to add it to my reading pile. Its been a long time since I read any Star Trek novels but I always enjoy them when I do. I too prefer TOS. Voyager was the only other TV series that I really liked although I did enjoy the last couple of years of TNG. I'm trying to slowly collect TOS DVD's as I can. Thanks for the heads up.

Mark Justice said...

In addition to the new mini-series, IDW is also reprinting the original run of THE MAZE AGENCY, with fair-play scripts by Barr and nice art from a then unknown Adam Hughes.