Following the events in the first book of the Vulcan's Soul
the Romulan Empire remains at war with the mysterious Watraii,
worst than that Starfleet Intelligence discovers that Chekov,
far from being killed in a transporter malfunction, is alive
and a prisoner on the Watraii homeworld. Unwilling to start
a new war so soon after the Dominion War, Uhura, now head
of Starfleet Intelligence, asks Spock, Scotty Data and the
Romulan exile Ruanek to mount a covert rescue mission which
must recover Chekov and a priceless Romulan artefact that
the Watraii have stolen, an artefact which may well be something
from the time of the founding of Romulus...
is the second book in the Vulcan's Soul trilogy by
Josepha Sherman and Susan Shwartz. Both of whom have written
extensively in the tie-in genre. They are also authors of
their own original concept novels.
is in fact two stories rolled into one, I presume that the
first novel also followed this format, though I haven't actually
read it. The book is an accomplished work and I'm sure it
was a difficult concept to keep fresh.
the contemporary Trek universe we are offered a fairly
straight forward rescue story, with our heroes off to free
the unfortunate Chekov from his captivity by the Watraii.
It would be fair to say that this part of the novel contains
little in the way of character development; it would also
be fair to say that this is not a surprise. The characters
of Spock, Savik, Chekov and Scotty are so well known that
to have them do something out of character would have most
of the Trekkies up in arms. The only inclusion of a major
character that felt a bit false was of poor old Scotty. The
poor bloke was already way past his best when he was rescued
from the transporter beam and was up for retirement, not the
sort of over weight guy you'd send into danger.
second part of the story is actually woven into the book by
the past and present sections having alternating chapters,
and concerns the Vulcan's flight from their own planet in
search of a new home, home that we all know will become Romulus.
In a way this historical portion is the most difficult, as
so much of the story is know already. We already know that
the exiles settle on Romulus, why they left and what their
eventual fate would be. From the film Nemesis we know
that something happened to abandon a proportion of the population
on Remus and the terrible mutations which ensued. Whilst their
trials and tribulations hold some interest, I did find myself
wishing that this part of the book would get on with it, the
slow decimation of the fleet started to do the same thing
with my interest about half way though.
of the things which kept both stories going is the enigma
of the Watraii, who apparently have a grudge against the Romulan's
for stealing their world, a grudge that is never explained
in this book, in fact when the Vulcan's eventually reach what
is to become Romulus, there is no indication, in the book,
that it contains any intelligent, indigenous life forms, which
is very strange and goes a long way to deepen the mystery
and keep the reader on tender hooks for the last book in the
an accomplished book, which should surely please Vulcan fans,
though it lacks the added little punch which would have drawn
in a wider readership.