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VINE VOICEon August 15, 2012
I am still enjoying reading about Picard's first command. However, I must point out up front that unlike book one's transfer to Kindle problems, book two's problems are MUCH more pronounced. So much so, that it actually does make it hard to read the book. I don't know what their transfer process was to get the book into Kindle format, but I am thinking a single-pass OCR import without any review of any kind. That is just sloppy at best. However, while someone should hang their head in shame for that, the STORY itself of the book is very good, and that is what I am rating.

I am still finding I am enjoying the various supporting cast members added to the Stargazer's crew, to flesh out the story. Second Commander Elizabeth Wu shined a bit more in this book, I liked her in the end. The sub-story concerning Communications Officer Ulelo being "not quite right" was interesting, although it smacked of DS9-type stories. chief engineer Phigus Simenon's personal problems were VERY Vulcan-like, but still interesting. Ensign Jiterica is still fascinating as a non-humanoid lifeform, and the two replacements for the departing crewmembers are semi-interesting.

I liked the story in book two a little bit better than book one's story, however it is still a day-in-the-life-of Star Trek type of story. The crew's character growth and increasing depth save the story, though.

If you can get past the TERRIBLE formatting, it is a good book.

4 stars.
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on September 9, 2011
The two stories are pretty good, Picard and his friends have to help the chief engineer get the chance to have children (they don't help with the ejaculation part, just the fore-play). In the meantime Cmdr Wu helps two of the troubled crew members find a place for themselves in Star Fleet and rescues a trapped cargo ship. Wu is not the Gas Lady, that is the low-density person from a gas giant planet who is normally a cloud of particles. The stories are okay, well written and hold together. Cmdr Wu is an interesting character and really could use a few stories more. As part of the early life of Picard this fits in pretty well, shows him to be a good guy and determined character who does all he can for his friends, except help them ejaculate, he leaves that to them. Why didn't he at least stay and cheer the guy through?
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on March 19, 2014
The Stargazer series adds an interesting level that was lacking in the Star Trek timeline. It takes place right after Captain Picard takes command of his first starship, the "Stargazer".

"Progenitor" is the second book in the series which I decided to read after enjoying the first book. The two storylines give you a better look at some of the main characters in the series and the story themselves will keep your interest.

I gave the story 3-stars because while interesting, the storyline outcomes where predictable and the side plot of a high ranking admiral trying to derail Captains Picard's career is annoying and cheesy. (His plans are always foiled in the end. "Those darn metaling kids"! ).

I'm hoping the series "matures" and adds some twist and surprises in later books. Regardless, I am a Captain Picard fan and the stories so far prove entertaining so will continue reading the series.

If you enjoy the TNG series especially Captain Picard's character you will enjoy this book.
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on May 1, 2002
Progenitor continues the saga of the Stargazer crew that was began with Gauntlet. In this book we continue to see wonderful characterizations. As in Gauntlet there are no great enemies to defeat no planet to save just great characters working together. Picard, Greyhorse, Ben Zoma accompany chief engineer Simenon to his home world and help him with a ritual he must face. We continue to see the developement of Victoria Wu as she commands Stargazer as they attempt to rescue a stranded starship. Ensign Nicholas learns the hardway that an Asmund sister isnt helpless. What is the mystery concerning Ulelo Dikembe? All in all an excellent addition to the Stargazer series.
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on May 27, 2002
In this second part of the new Stargazer series the Chief Enginner and the Scond Officer Wu are the main focus. Simeon has to return to his world and has to participate in a race with other of his kind. In this race if you win you get to fertilize the eggs and continue your family line.
Simeon has to have some people with him in this race and he picks his Stargazer friends. His family members hav died off and only one remain so this is why he has to pick offworlders.
While this is going on Wu has to rescue a ship and decide if she wants to stay on board or become 1st office of her old ship.
If this was not enough we hav good old politics going on back at Fleet headquarters. This is a continuation from the first book where there is this admiral determine to mess up Jean-Luc.
The story also has some interesting cameos from people such as the Hansens (Seven's relatives), Rachel Garrett and a new crew member someone with the last name of Paris. The series is off to a good start and I can't wait for more.
The only flaws I saw was a printing mistake that merged some stories together without a break between them. I also saw that Picard's first officer referred as human which I believe he is not. But those errors are very minor and not important to the story.
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on February 8, 2016
This is another great story about another new civilization and an extension of the Stargazer characters including Picard and numerous others. When I started reading the Star Trek ebooks, I wished that I had started with this group on Picard's history although I thoroughly enjoyed the Titan series.
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on July 25, 2008
Oh, it's far from the WORST Star Trek novel I've ever read, but it's even farther from the best. For one thing, the main plotline -- the one from which the title is taken -- is far too reminiscent of the original series episode "Amok Time" to avoid the charge of being derivative, and if it's better handled than that episode in some ways, it's also handled less well in others. The secondary plot, the one involving Commander Wu and the ship, is somewhat better, but still rather predictable. And the subplot of the admiral who has it in for Picard is getting annoying. Not to mention the nit-picky fact that the editing is rather sloppy; there are numerous places where we move from one scene to another -- from the primary plotline to the secondary one, for instance -- and ordinarily, there would be an extra linefeed to set the scenes off from one another, and there isn't, which makes a rather jarring transition as we go from "Commander Wu did thus-and-such" to "Picard did thus-and-such", without getting our standard hint that we're changing scenes from one in which he isn't present to one in which he is. Trivial, but sloppy and annoying.

If you liked the first book of this series, you may like this one. Then again, you may not.
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on December 25, 2012
Upon reading The Valliant, then Stargazer book 1 I couldnt wait to learn more of Captain Jean luc Picard's early days, In this second book of the Stargazers series we take a closer look at the reptialian engineer of the Stargazer. I found this book to be a good read, as we follow not just Captain Picard but most of his command staff and the personal relationships unfold even more. I enjoyed this book and would recommend it to any "trek" fan. Thanks for your time
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on July 17, 2002
This is a great series and it shows a young Jon Luc before the officers aboard the Enterprise followed him without question. It shows an untested captain and makes for much more interesting stories.. there is a scene in this novel where the characters are surrounded by intergalactic wolves. Greyhorse is another one of those Friedman characters that always surprise the reader.
This series is going to rival that of Peter David's Excalibur series. I just wish they would do more than two a year. At that pace no one is going to get into this series without having to wait a very long time for the next installment.
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on May 11, 2002
In May 2002, Pocket Books published Michael Jan Friedman's Gauntlet and Progenitor, two novels set in the first year of Jean-Luc Picard's command of the USS Stargazer. It is over 30 years before his adventures as captain of the Enterprise-D in Star Trek: The Next Generation and thus we have a Picard who is still urbane and cultured, but still a relatively unseasoned starship commander.
We meet again Picard's weapons officer, Lieutenant Vigo (introduced in the ST:TNG episode "The Battle"). As well, we are reintroduced to Picard's command staff who served with him for 20 years and more (shades of Kirk and his command staff): Gilaad Ben Zoma, his impulsive first officer; chief medical officer Carter Greyhorse, who is better at dealing with lab equipment than with people; earnest security chief Peter "Pug" Joseph; Idun and Gerda Asmund, twin sisters (humans raised by Klingons) who are the primary helm and navigation officers, respectively; and Phigus Simenon, the curmudgeonly chief engineer and member of the Gnalish species (think Jack Klugman crossed with a velociraptor). These characters were all first introduced 11 years ago in Friedman's novel Reunion and have also appeared in The First Virtue (Friedman's contribution to the "Double Helix" series, co-written with Christie Golden), Requiem and last year's The Valiant.
In Gauntlet, Picard is tasked with stopping the pirate known as the White Wolf. An ambitious admiral has given Picard this choice assignment on the assumption that he will fail and his new captaincy made a lauging stock. The White Wolf turns out to be something totally other than what Picard has expected. In Progenitor, chief engineer Simenon returns to the Gnalish homeworld - accompanied by several Stargazer officers -- to undergo a time-honored ritual that will determine the continuation of his bloodline. A comparison between this plot and the TOS episode "Amok Time" is inevitable, but it's an intriguing take on an old plot.
Among the new characters introduced in these novels are Juanita Valderrama, a middle-aged chief science officer whose complacency in her career leads her to an unwise choice; Joe Caber, scion of a Starfleet family, whose kindness towards some of his fellow officers doesn't offset some nasty personality traits; Martin Paxton, the Stargazer's chief of communications; Elizabeth Wu, a by-the-book second officer who is reminiscent of Commander Shelby from TNG "The Best of Both Worlds"; Jiterica, a young ensign of the low-density humanoid Nizhrak species who wears a containment suit while aboard Stargazer; Obal, a comical-looking Binderian engineer (he resembles a plucked bird and I visualized Daffy Duck on Prozac) who becomes the target of another officer's bigotry; and Dikembe Ulelo, a newly-transferred communications officer with a hidden agenda. Also appearing are relatives of Star Trek: Voyager characters (I won't spoil it for you by telling you who).
I enjoyed both novels. The 70-year "interregnum" between the events of Star Trek: Generations' prologue (set in 2293) and ST:TNG is still largely unexplored territory. Absent a television or movie series set during those years, a book series that fills in some of the gaps is very welcome. Friedman's handling of the gaps in the tapestry of Star Trek history is deft and fun to read. Each novel contains portents of plotlines for future Star Trek: Stargazer novels, which I ancticipate with enthusiasm.
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