The crew of the Starship Voyager have barely survived
the spatial anomalies that make up space directly surrounding
the Monoharan system. They have little time to reflect on
their recent experiences. Although their actions seem to have
averted the most recent disaster they have lost their first
officer, Tuvok, who has uncharacteristically stolen a shuttle
[I feel a shuttle crash coming up] and headed off into space
towards what appears to be a massive space station, surrounding
a black hole. Unable to use their warp field, they cannot
overtake him before he arrives. Meanwhile, Captain Janeway
has her own problems; odd occurrences within her ship have
started to trouble her so that she has less time to deal with
her sister Phoebe...
Theory: Fusion is set between seasons four
of the television show, and is the second book in the String
Theory series. Written by Kirsten Beyer, who had previously
contributed the story Isabo's Shirt to the Distant
Shores anthology, Fusion had a lot to live up to
- as I personally thought that Cohesion
by Jeffrey Lang, the first book in the series, was a hum dinger
of a story. For the most part, whilst I think that Fusion
was a worthy successor, I don't think that it was as successful
as the first novel.
I thought that the book was very well written, the voices
and mannerisms of the main characters from the show ring true.
Having said that, there were a few criticisms, the problem
here lies mostly with the third part of the book. Once all
the pieces are set on the board, for the end game, it takes
way too long to wind up the plot. The inclusion of an extra
Vulcan to act as a conduit for a prostrate Tuvok is patently
unnecessary; there is nothing in the narrative that would
have precluded Tuvok just speaking for himself.
There was also way too many characters explaining the purpose
of the key, an artefact central to the plot, and the possible
genesis of the main protagonist, effectively imparting the
same information to the reader. That's not to say that there
was little of merit in the third part, many of the passages
are well written and some of the harder pan-dimensional ideas
are put over very well.
to budgetary constraints, novels are usually the place where
the imagination of the writer can expand exponentially on
the show. In this case Beyer has been no slouch. Her descriptions
of the massive station, and its interior, show up her quality
of writing and depth of imagination. The inclusion of the
Nacene was an excellent opportunity to both explain some of
the races background and expand on its mythic qualities. The
addition of the race goes a long way to explaining the events
of the first book whilst throwing up questions of its own.
a nice addition to the set but I can't help feeling that,
with a little less padding and the exclusion of unnecessary
characters, this would have been a more enjoyable read. Having
said that I look forward to any new novel she may produce.
This was a good read with some great ideas and truly enjoyable
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