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TNG: Do Comets Dream?, by S. P. Somtow Book Review | SFReader.com
TNG: Do Comets Dream?, by S. P. Somtow Genre: Star Trek Publisher: Pocket Books Published: 2003 Review Posted: 9/10/2005 Reviewer Rating:
Reader Rating: Not Rated
TNG: Do Comets Dream?, by S. P. Somtow
Book Review by Jeff Edwards
Have you read this book?
The people of Thanet believe that the end of the world is at hand. Their religion has prepared them for a 5,000-year cycle of death and rebirth, and the day of reckoning has nearly arrived. But the Federation knows that the approaching apocalypse is nothing more than a rogue comet, and sends Captain Picard on a delicate mission: to save a planet from destruction without shattering its belief system. Picard's assignment becomes even more difficult when he learns that the comet - or something within it - is alive.
In Do Comets Dream?, the Starship Enterprise embarks on another voyage "to seek out new civilizations." But after the "away team" beams onto Thanet, the action comes to a screeching halt, and the story veers into fantasy territory, despite its guise of science fiction. Within a bio-engineered vessel that looks like a sea dragon, Commander Data finds a way for his crewmates to simultaneously witness and "experience" ancient events on a rival planet called Tanith, and they slowly uncover the origin of the man-made comet hurtling toward them.
This is the kind of book where the rightful stars like Picard fade into the background and minor characters take center stage: Simon Tarses (a half-Romulan from an episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation) assumes a lead role in a love-at-first-sight romance with the Thanetian ambassador's daughter. Poor proofreading makes matters worse: Readers will shake their heads at botched dialogue like "Were you entertaining me or myself?" and "I don't know why they let them talk me into it."
Do Comets Dream? reads like a pre-existing story treatment that S.P. Somtow shoehorned into the Star Trek universe. In the novel, Somtow writes, "Nothing about the Enterprise is ever routine." But fans expecting a typical Star Trek adventure with Captain Picard at the helm will be alienated by this foray into fantasy starring second-string characters.
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