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VINE VOICEon September 13, 2011
Three years into his mission aboard the USS Enterprise, Dr. Leonard McCoy begrudgingly stays behind to deal with a shipment of medical supplies while two away teams investigate the planet Mu Arigulon. But McCoy is at a loss when shipmates begin falling into comas apparently without reason, at the same time the ship hits a special distortion on the way to meet up with the away teams. Meanwhile, the two shuttles led by Captain Kirk and Spock are investigating a seemingly abandoned planet, when one of their officers goes missing.

This original series story focuses mostly on Dr. McCoy and his struggle with a non-stop stream of injured crewmen, while he begins to hear voices and question his sanity. And on Mu Arigulon, Kirk, and the rest of the away teams come across a startling discovery and unique alien life. There isn't much need for character development, since those of us reading already know the characters. But we do get an interesting look back at McCoy's pre-Starfleet life, amidst his present efforts. The story feels like an original series episode, fast-paced and full of adventure. Star Trek fans will enjoy this engaging and imaginative new release.
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on January 5, 2012
Many of the other posters have already given a synopsis of what the plot is for this book, so I'll jump into my review:

THE GOOD:
-Uhura is in command, and we get to hear her dish out commands after the previous "commander," Sulu, goes out of commission due to a time/space issue that hits the ship.

-Sulu is in command.

Even though we know he will eventually get his own ship in the onscreen canon, it's still interesting to see him handle things while Kirk, Spock, and Scotty are off the ship.

-The aliens of Farezzi. They had a unique way of speaking, as well as a unique look.

-Many of the minor Enterprise characters from The Original Series show up.

THE BAD:

-Too many of the characters from The Original Series episodes turn up, as well as new characters. Unfortunately, since there are so many characters, no one is given their unique voice, or a clear picture of how they look.

Sometimes, it wasn't clear what gender the new characters were, until later in the novel when they may be referred to as "him" or "her." For casual Star Trek fans, even the minor characters seen onscreen may be unfamiliar, and add to the confusion of trying keeping up with everyone.

-While trying to keep track with the many characters, it's not always easy to actually figure out what is going on, or where they characters are at certain points. For instance, near the end of the book, it was understood that they set up a "bridge" in sickbay due to the problems on the primary bridge as well as the auxilery control room. And, given that there were so many casualties, and sickbay had a lot of people going back and forth, it wasn't clear how the improptu bridge was able to run.

There were others: For instance a dogfight between two shuttles and alien fighters, where it wasn't clear whether they were still on the planet they initially came to or in space.

THE UGLY:

-Too many characters + too much going on = overloaded book
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on August 15, 2012
The Enterprise is in a difficult area of space. Mr.'s Scott & Spock, the Captain, Dr. M'Benga and some other support crew have been exploring from space and on the ground an alien planet that
appears to be deserted but isn't. In space the Enterprise is running aground onto spacial "sand
bars" rather violently, McCoy has four patients - all espers - who are dying with no explanation,
and he's having hallucinations of people from his past who appear to reproach him for past abandonment and failings. This part was painful, but it's a mystery I wouldn't have missed and I don't want to spoil it for you.
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on July 13, 2013
An easy to read Star Trek novel; but nothing truly memorable. There were a few tense moments where the plot felt like it was taking off, just to sort of smother into so-so again. I recommend this Trek novel only if you really enjoy the older Original Series stuff from the eighties and early nineties. This book can't compare to the newer books in the Vanguard series, or the Destiny series.....
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on December 26, 2013
Bought for my kid as one of her requested x-mas gifts. She loves it. Can't go wrong for Star Trek fans.
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on September 5, 2011
With Captain Kirk, Mister Spock, Scotty, Chekov, Dr. M'Benga, Chief of Security Giotto and eight others from the USS Enterpise's crew on an away mission aboard the Shuttlecrafts Columbus and Hofstadter, that leaves the Enterpise under Sulu's command - and then Uhura's - with Chief Medical Officer Leonard McCoy trying to keep the crew together, physically and mentally, while they attempt to keep the Enterprise from being destroyed by a sudden and violent spatial distortion in which they've become trapped. What started out as a simple mission to deliver medical supplies to Deep Space Station C-15, with a side trip to make first contact with an nearby planet, turns into one of extreme danger, with the away team losing a crewman.... and in their attempt to find him run into a toxic/threatening environment and a race of beings the likes of which they've never before encountered - and who are not at all happy to have visitors. Back on the Enterprise Dr. McCoy is stuggling to save the lives of several officers who have fallen into a coma, are slowly dying dispite every effort to treat them. When it is discovered that these officers all possess extraordinary telepathic and psychic abilities - which are somehow connected to the spatial distortion that they can't escape - McCoy decides he'll have to try to link with them mentally [as a certain pointy-eared science officer is not there to do it], and risk being trapped in there with them in "The Nothing" if he can't figure a way out - for them and for himself. As a decades-long fan of Dr. McCoy I was delighted to have another Star Trek novel that features Bones.... and that delves into his inner thoughts and memories as he fights for the lives of his shipmates and friends [with Nurse Chapel at his side]. The other TOS Enterprise crew members - particularly those we know best - also get their own chance to shine.... as everyone is in peril. As the scenes shifted back and forth I found myself anxious for each of the Starfleet officers. For me it was like being back among old friends and crewmates.... and I'll reread it now to try to pick up even more of the many connections to prior Star Trek history [per TOS episodes, movies and books]. I truly enjoyed "A Choice of Catastrophes" ....and sincerely hope the authors write another Star Trek novel very soon! "Second star to the right....."
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on October 11, 2011
A Choice of Catastrophes is an excellent addition to the Sat Trek universe. All of our favorite original series characters are featured, and comically there are those poor unfortunate red shirts waiting to be cannon fodder for the away teams. Kirk and Spock work separately on a dangerous away mission, Sulu and Uhura have the bridge and are involved in their own vicious circumstance, and I have only one complaint. Bones is too repetitive in his nervous nellie attitude, but that is a consequence of a strange psychic phenomenon occurring onboard the Enterprise. Overall, this is a balanced novel and very enjoyable at that!
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on August 31, 2014
This is a pretty good story; it's a little weak for a four-star rating, but definitely too good for a thre-star rating. I'd say its current 3.7 star average is about right. The story started slowly, with the crisis with the crew members with good esper rating going comatose seeming a bit too reminiscent of the episode "Where No Man Has Gone Before", and McCoy's self-doubts and insecurity seeming a bit too severe to be in character. Mostly, those objections are explained well enough by the end of the story to be not too much of an issue, but it did cause me to have some serious doubts early on.Definitely an above-average story, but not much better than that.
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on September 17, 2011
I have marveled at how Trek books have gotten more mature, complex, intricate, and well-written. Characters have been grown, new characters added, and most have been very, very good. But this book is the opposite. The characters are not depicted very well, their actions are odd, off key, and shallow. Skip this one and wait for the continuation of Vanguard.
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on December 6, 2014
Excellent.
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