The Human Adventure continues as this week’s Trek tale continues to give us stories from the time period following the events of The Motion Picture. All well and good, but like the previous novel, this one feels like a bit of a miss as well. I love the setting of the book, I just couldn’t get involved in it.
The Enterprise arrives at a planet ruled by a ‘god’ calling himself Weyland. It’s hinted at that he comes from a continuum of very powerful beings, perhaps he’s a wayward Q. But that isn’t the only problem James T. Kirk and company have. The Klingons are in the area as well and are stirring up trouble.
When things go badly with Weyland, the life of one of Kirk’s crew is taken, Garrovick, last seen in The Original Series in the episode Obsession. And while Kirk, Spock and McCoy aboard the Enterprise, try to figure out a way to prove their intentions are just and honourable, the rest of the landing party, Scotty, Sulu and Chekov are transported into regions of Earth’s past.
Chekov ends up in a Nazi prison camp, and finds an unlikely ally in the form of one of Kirk’s ancestors, Scotty finds himself in the Scot highlands embroiled in trouble with the British, while Sulu ends up in feudal Japan.
All of these events are playing out simultaneously for the reader, and for Weyland (being near omnipotence and all) and as the climax draws closer he sees how honourable these men really are.
I think this one could have been set during The Original Series, there’s nothing really that makes it stand out as post-The Motion Picture. I always feel that stories that take place after that tend to have a little more gravity to them as they realise they are growing older, even as they revel in the exploration of the unknown again. And that’s just not there.
There are some nice nods to episodes, as well as moments and events that have shaped the characters’ lives, but none of them were enough to get me truly wrapped up in the tale. And much like last week’s book, I couldn’t see this one in my mind’s eye.
Still, the the journeys will continue, and I will explore all the strange new worlds that the Enterprise brings me to. Much like Star Trek episodes, I’m not going to love them all, but I will always appreciate that they are Trek.
And there is so much more to come. So I will continue to boldly go…