Saturday, 9 March 2013

Starfleet Academy: The Gemini Agent - Rick Barba



Title: The Gemini Agent
Author: Rick Barba
Genre: Sci-Fi
Published: 2011
Formats: Hardback/Paperback/Ebook

Available at:
Amazon
The Book Depository
Kobo
Amazon UK

“The Gemini Agent” is Rick Barba’s 2nd novel set within JJ Abrams’ alternative version of Star Trek. The plot once again is mainly set within Starfleet Academy itself as the cadets begin their preparations for the Zeta mission, an opportunity for them to go out into space on a starship and take on various officer roles in a fictional assignment. Kirk, as expected is hoping to take on a captain’s role, but his chances are dealt a blow when he suffers from a health scare involving blacking out for several hours. Before long Kirk is accused of committing various inappropriate and illegal acts during the blackout period and his very place at the Academy becomes under threat. So together with McCoy, Uhura and the usual gang of friends he tries to find a way to prove his innocence.

As with the other Starfleet Academy novels this book is aimed at the Young Adult market so the plot does move along at quite a fast pace and isn’t the most complex of plot lines. It was very obvious who the “villain” is and therefore there wasn’t any real sense of surprise or curiosity as I read the book. I still found it to be a fun and enjoyable adventure but it was probably the most simplistic mystery story out of all the books in this series so far.

The characters came across in a manner that did tie in with how they appeared within the movie which is one of the continually good aspects of this series. In addition, I appreciated how Barba has tried to use the book to further develop the characters beyond what we have seen on the screen and in other books. For example, whilst the interactions between Spock and Uhura weren’t critical to the plotline they did enable Barba to show the way in which their relationship was continuing to grow and develop.

Overall, this was another solidly enjoyable Star Trek novel aimed at the teenage fans of the JJ Abrams movie. Whilst it was rather an obvious plot, fans of the series will probably appreciate the way in which the book focused on developing the characters and their various relationships.