Monday, 9 November 2015
Star Trek: The Original Series: Crisis of Consciousness - Dave Galanter
Title: Crisis of Consciousness
Author: Dave Galanter
The Book Depository
"Crisis of Consciousness" by Dave Galanter is another Star Trek novel set during the time period of the Original Series. The story follows Captain Kirk and the Enterprise as they are dispatched to transfer the ambassador of the mildly xenophobic Maabas back to his home planet after signing a treaty with the Federation. Shortly after arriving, the Enterprise is then attacked by a mysterious race known as the Kenisians who claim that they are the original inhabitants of the planet and are now demanding it back. Kirk and his crew must therefore attempt to find a way in which an agreement can be reached before war breaks out and an entire sector of space is potentially destroyed.
Without doubt, this is one of the best Original Series novels I have had the pleasure to read with an enjoyable and intriguing plot. The fast-pacing and skilful writing also helped to keep me hooked from start to finish. Whilst at its core the story is an enjoyable look at how cultures respond to the wrongs perpetrated against them in the past, this doesn’t mean that the novel is lacking in action. There are some superb battle scenes that had me thoroughly entertained with the Enterprise taking a fair bit of damage. This is Trek at its best, fun and action supported by an engaging and thoughtful storyline.
In addition, the new races that have been introduced here are wonderfully well crafted. Both the Maabas and Kenisians are complex and thoroughly interesting species with the multividual personas of the Kenisians being a real highlight of the book.
Galanter also does a great job with the main characters; Kirk, Spock and McCoy are skilfully brought to life. But he also gives the supporting characters their moments as well with Uhura and Scotty both getting the chance to shine. The main focus though is without doubt on Spock and his treatment in this novel is quite simply sublime. He is the usual resourceful and brilliant Vulcan we are used to, but at the same time we get to see his own inner doubts and conflicts about what he must do to achieve his goals. It was wonderful realising that this was Galanter trying to show us a convincing reason for what would later lead Spock to his decision to follow the path of Kolinahr.
To sum up, if you enjoy the Original Series to any extent then I really have to recommend this book to you. It is thoroughly entertaining on many levels with an interesting plot, good writing and expertly captured characters. Personally, I can’t wait to read other novels in the Trek universe that have been penned by Galanter.