This Next Generation novel presents a return to the Nexus featured in the film 'Generations'. Jean-Luc Picard is commanding the Enterprise and travels to aid the Newton, a pure science vessel. By studying the nexus, a ribbon-like energy field travelling through space, the scientists have determined that it will pass into an area of the galaxy inhabited by religious fundamentalists the Kinshaya. Rather than let the irrational enemies of Starfleet use the nexus for destruction, the scientists have decided to try to destroy it.
Picard has spent time inside the nexus, experiencing his hopes and dreams, but has seen how a man called Soran was driven mad by the drugged state it creates and was prepared to do anything to get back inside the ribbon. Married and with his own child, the captain has a lot to lose. The attempt to destroy the nexus doesn't succeed and the science ship's captain is killed. Picard is now the senior officer and has to make fast decisions, including whether or not the attempt was sabotaged.
Picard travels inside the nexus but this time meets the memory of Soran, so we see the obsessed man's point of view and why he had been so desperate to return to his illusory family in the energy field. The Kinshaya are feathered and beaked, like griffins, and just as predatory. They make nicely unusual, if one-sided bad guys and their threats to eat Picard and regurgitate him for the nestlings are fun to read.
Knowledge of the series is assumed and having seen the film would definitely help, but those likely to read this book are surely fans of the Star Trek world. Main familiar characters are Worf, Dr Crusher and LaForge. A Czech officer is on the bridge having replaced an Indian officer, and females have a greatly expanded role including security. The Kinshaya starships are called Liberators, the name of the starship in BBC TV series Blake's Seven, for which this British author James Swallow has also written.