It is with some trepidation that I approached, Star
Trek: Strange New Worlds, a collection of fan fiction.
So many of the professional stories start with a shuttle crashing
into a planet that you wonder just why Starfleet would keep
buying them from the same manufacturer. So it was a pleasant
surprise to find that none of the contributors had resorted
to this old a creaky plot device.
New Worlds is a collection of short stories that contributors
enter into a competition, the best being published on an annual
basis; this is the eighth anthology in the series. It's a
shame that the competition is only open to people living in
the USA or Canada, though I can understand the restriction,
it would be a mammoth task without some way of limiting the
number of entries. Each of the published works is given prizes
in the form of contracts and money with a take of the royalties
from the next book, so well worth the effort, from the writer's
point of view.
stories cover all of the Star Trek television series
as well as a speculative section, so regardless of which of
the shows are your favourite there will be something here
for all tastes. I would urge you to read the whole book though;
the quality of story telling is far superior to many anthologies
by established writers and is certainly superior to the recent
Tales From The Captains Table
are twenty-two stories in all, each as good as the last, so
it is a difficult task to pick out anything that could be
described as a highlight. The stories range from personal
insights into a particular character to the birth and death
of the Federation and the universe.
The top prize went to Alpha and Omega by Derek Tyler
Attico, and represents his first foray into the Strange
New Worlds. It is a story that has everything, the Borg,
the final defeat of the federation, a revelation about the
Q and a rebirth of the universe from a most unexpected quarter.
Not exactly a small subject to take on.
prize went to Concurrence by Geoffrey Thorne, and tells
of the rescue of a woman from a Vulcan research lab by a group
of new aliens during the Dominion wars. The question is why
is she there? Why would the Vulcans rather kill all of themselves
to maintain the secret? Is the new race of aliens as new as
we first thought? It's a lovely little piece with many twists
and a surprising ending.
well worth the money, with an impressive breath and depth
of imagination being demonstrated in nearly all of the stories,
all the more so as the next professionally written Star
Trek book I'm looking at to review has a shuttle crash
at the beginning. Lord help us.
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