Star Trek The Unsettling Stars
By Alan Dean Foster
“Taking place in an alternate timeline created when the Starship Kelvin was destroyed by a Romulan invader from the future, this bold new novel follows Captain James T. Kirk and an inexperienced crew commandeering a repaired U.S.S. Enterprise out of spacedock for a simple shakedown cruise. When a distress call comes in, the Enterprise must aid a large colony ship of alien refugees known as the Perenorean, who are under siege by an unknown enemy. But Kirk and his crew will find that the situation with the peaceful Perenorean is far more complicated than they bargained for, and the answers as to why they were attacked in the first place unfold in the most insidious of ways…”
About the Author
After rescuing the Perenoreans from attacking Dre’kalaks, Captain Kirk and his crew help the stranded aliens to resettle on Dibor, a moon of Sibor. The Siboronaans welcome the new refugees, who are friendly and helpful. However, both sides are not revealing the full truth about everything and the resulting mess ends up in James T. Kirk’s lap.
Kirk is aware of the need to solve this problem because he has no desire to lose his captaincy. As quickly as he was promoted, he could be busted back down again.
The story reads like a Trek episode, and one could easily see this being aired as an episode on television.
So we are introduced to the Perenoreans in The Unsettling Stars, who are the most annoying alien race since the Pakleds. In fact, they put me in mind of the Pakleds from the very beginning, except they were extremely intelligent.
Pretty much the, “if it’s too good to be true, then it probably is” proverb applies in The Unsettling Stars. Perhaps I’m a bit cynical, but right away the Perenorean fawning attitude made me suspicious of their motives.
Kirk and crew were a bit too eager to jump into the middle of a fight when they did not know the reason for the fight and they soon had cause to regret this. Kirk’s impetuousness comes back to bite him hard.
The solution to the problems caused by the Perenoreans on board the Enterprise comes courtesy of Spock and when he threw one of the Perenorean’s statements back at him at the end of the story, one could only smile.
The one thing that kept me reading to the end of the book was trying to figure out the motives of the Perenoreans. Did they do what they did because it was their (misguided) way, or was there a less benign reason? You’ll have to read the book for the answer to that question.
In reading The Unsettling Stars, sometimes it was hard to visualize the Enterprise characters as the Abrams-verse characters. Were it not for the Spock-Uhura romance, which is just as irksome in this novel as on-screen, and Spock’s references to the loss of Vulcan, the characters could have been the regular original series characters. I just don’t hear them as the Abrams-verse characters. I’m not sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing. I guess if one expected a book specifically about those characters and doesn’t “hear” them, it could be a disappointment.
Even so, The Unsettling Stars is an interesting and enjoyable read.
Author: Alan Dean Foster
Publisher: Pocket Books
Publication Date: April 14, 2010
Star Trek: The Unsettling Stars is available as a hardback for $14.89 on Amazon or as an eBook for $11.99. The Unsettling Stars is also available as an audiobook. To order, head to the link located here.