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A Star Trek: The Next Generation: Time #9: A Time for War, A Time for Peace Kindle Edition

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Length: 384 pages Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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About the Author

Keith R.A. DeCandido was born and raised in New York City to a family of librarians. He has written over two dozen novels, as well as short stories, nonfiction, eBooks, and comic books, most of them in various media universes, among them Star Trek, World of Warcraft, Starcraft, Marvel Comics, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Serenity, Resident Evil, Gene Roddenberry's Andromeda, Farscape, Xena, and Doctor Who. His original novel Dragon Precinct was published in 2004, and he's also edited several anthologies, among them the award-nominated Imaginings and two Star Trek anthologies. Keith is also a musician, having played percussion for the bands the Don't Quit Your Day Job Players, the Boogie Knights, and the Randy Bandits, as well as several solo acts. In what he laughingly calls his spare time, Keith follows the New York Yankees and practices kenshikai karate. He still lives in New York City with his girlfriend and two insane cats.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Chapter 1: Qo'noS

Sunrise on Qo'noS had lost its appeal for Ambassador Worf.

There was a time, not so long ago, when the best part of his day was the very beginning, when he would enter his office in the Federation embassy and watch the sun blaze over the horizon through the huge picture window that took up most of the office's back wall. In the almost four years he had served as Federation ambassador to the Klingon Empire, the one part of his daily routine that he could count on enjoying was the spectacular view of the sun casting its fiery glow across the First City at the top of the day.

Recent events had dimmed that enthusiasm considerably. The actions of others less honorable had forced Worf into a position where he had to compromise himself in order to serve the greater good. The alternative was to allow an even greater evil, and he could not permit that to happen, regardless of the consequences.

It was a state of affairs that was all too familiar to the son of Mogh.

A little more than a month ago, he had used his position -- as an ambassador, and as a member of the Klingon chancellor's House -- to give his former crewmates on the U.S.S. Enterprise a weapon of sorts that they could use to prevent a Klingon Defense Force fleet from engaging in a suicidal attack on the planet Tezwa. Officially, no one could prove that he provided the Enterprise with the prefix codes that would disable the fleet; unofficially, it couldn't have been anyone else.

How many times? he asked himself. How many times have I sacrificed my own honor to protect the unworthy? And how many times will I have to do it again?

"It's supposed to be fairly hot today," came a voice from behind him.

Sighing, Worf turned around. Another part of the routine: his aide, Giancarlo Wu, would enter the office and make some offhand comment about the weather, thus signaling the start of the workday. Wearing his usual monochrome shirt, matching pants, and different-colored vest -- today he went for red and green -- Wu stood in the doorway to the office, reaching into the vest's pocket.

However, he did not pull out his padd, as Worf had expected -- that padd was always either in Wu's hand or in his vest pocket, to the point that the ambassador honestly believed that his aide would suffer withdrawal symptoms if separated from it for any length of time. Instead, Wu removed an optical chip and walked it over to where Worf sat at his desk. "I think you'll want to see this first thing, sir. It was sent to you on a secure channel by T'Latrek."

After regarding the chip for a moment, Worf plugged it into the slot on the side of his terminal. Besides representing Vulcan on the Federation Council, T'Latrek served as the councillor for external affairs and was, in essence, Worf's superior.

The screen lit up with the logo of the Federation News Service. Odd, Worf thought. Why would T'Latrek send me a news story?

A female Pandrilite face replaced the logo. "The top story is the surprise resignation of Federation President Min Zife. In a move that has shocked the entire quadrant, President Zife, his chief of staff, Koll Azernal, and Nelino Quafina, the secretary of military intelligence, have stepped down from office, effective immediately. This statement was issued across the Federation this morning."

The image then cut to Zife sitting at his desk in the presidential office in Paris, his arms placed in front of him, resting on the large desk, which was currently empty of anything save the Bolian's blue-skinned hands. The flag of the Federation hung on a pole behind the president, in front of the huge window that provided a panorama of the City of Light that made Worf's own view of the First City pale in comparison. The Tour Eiffel was the only landmark in sight.

"It is with a sense of both regret and joy that I announce my resignation as president of the United Federation of Planets, as well as the resignation of Koll Azernal, my chief of staff, and Nelino Quafina, my military intelligence secretary. Regret because achieving this office has been the culmination of a lifetime of service to the Federation, and one that has been incredibly rewarding for myself and, I hope, for the Federation, particularly during the dark days of our war against the Dominion.

"Joy because I feel that this resignation is perhaps the greatest of those services that I can now give to the Federation. While my chief of staff and I were able to serve our nation well in war, we were, it seems, less suited for peace. As the war grows more distant in our past, it has become increasingly obvious that Koll and I need to step down for the good of the Federation. The model by which we survived during the war, and even during the first few months afterward, is no longer tenable as we and our allies attempt to bring a new era of peace.

"One of the truisms of sentient life throughout the galaxy is that different leadership is required for different circumstances. On Bolarus, one of our most revered historical figures is a monarch from a time before the planet was united, named Queen Vaq. She led the nation of Alnat to its most prosperous era after winning several consecutive wars. What most forget is that when Alnat became the greatest power on Bolarus, and all her enemies were defeated, Vaq was forced to abdicate, for without an enemy to fight, she led the nation to economic ruin.

"Unlike Vaq, I will not wait for a coup d'état to remove me from power. I was given a mandate from the people of the Federation -- not once, but twice -- to lead them through uneasy times, to make quick and difficult decisions for the greater good. Now, though, serving that mandate has proven more problematic. Quick and difficult decisions are not what is best for the Federation, nor for our allies. The time has come when I can best serve the people's mandate by stepping down, by allowing the people to choose someone who can lead us in peace as effectively as I was able to in war.

"As per the Federation charter, an election will be held within the month. The Federation Council will continue to administrate on a pro tem basis until a new president has been elected.

"I thank you all very much for your support, your patience, and your understanding. Good-bye."

Back to the Pandrilite: "The Federation Council made no comment regarding the resignations, but did release a statement: Councillor Ra'ch B'ullhy has been appointed president pro tempore, and the Council will be accepting petitions for presidential candidates immediately. The ballot containing the names of those who fit the criteria for candidacy will be announced by the Council one week from today. The election will be held at the end of the month.

"At present, the front-runners for presidential candidacy include T'Latrek of Vulcan, the current councillor for external affairs, who has held that position for eight decades; Nan Bacco, the planetary governor of Cestus III; Fel Pagro, the chief special emissary for Ktar; and Admiral William Ross of Starfleet. Naturally, speculation is already running rampant as to what led President Zife and Chief of Staff Azernal to their decision at this particular juncture, especially with the next election less than a year away."

The screen reverted to the FNS logo, then went blank.

Worf leaned back in his large leather chair. "A -- convincing fabrication."


"Zife and Azernal's reasons for resigning begin and end with Tezwa."

"I suspected as much, sir. Still, the general public can't very well be aware of that, can they?"

Worf folded his arms. "No. This willing resignation is a far more palatable solution than admitting to secretly arming the Tezwans." If Martok or the Klingon High Council ever found out that the Federation president armed an enemy of the empire, it could lead to yet another abrogation of the Khitomer Accords, and possibly war between the Federation and the empire. Neither nation was in a position to wage a prolonged war against the other, and the collapse of their alliance would destabilize the Alpha Quadrant at a time when it could ill afford such a thing.

Yet another secret I must keep from a man I have called brother, Worf thought bitterly. "I sometimes regret the day I chose to enter the realm of politics," he muttered.

Wu tilted his head. "I should think that after all these years, sir, you'd be used to it."

Glowering at his aide, Worf said, "The time since I accepted the ambassadorship is hardly 'all these years.' "

"My apologies, sir, I thought you said you regretted entering the realm of politics. That happened when you entered the Great Hall thirteen years ago in order to defend your father against accusations that he aided the Romulans at Khitomer."

Worf's glower intensified. "Excuse me?"

Wu put his hands in his vest pockets. "You accepted discommendation in order to cover up the crimes of the House of Duras and preserve unity on the High Council, but kept your brother -- a high-ranking officer in the Defense Force -- shielded from the dishonor. When Gowron needed help during the civil war, you were then able to use Kurn's position to restore your House and keep House Duras from gaining power." He removed his hands from his pockets, taking the padd out with his right hand. "Each of the last two chancellors, not to mention the emperor himself, owe their positions directly to you. You've probably had more impact on the face of Klingon politics than any single person in the last twenty years. Your accepting the ambassadorship was simply the continuation of a process you'd begun long before."

The aide's words mirrored similar ones spoken to Worf by Ambassador Spock three years earlier on a shuttle trip to a diplomatic conference. He had dismissed them then as exaggeration. He was tempted to do so now, but hesitated. Neither Spock nor Wu were prone to such things. Indeed, Wu had always, at Worf's own insistence, been completely...

Product Details

  • File Size: 2263 KB
  • Print Length: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket Books/Star Trek (October 1, 2004)
  • Publication Date: September 28, 2004
  • Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000FC2JIO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #550,031 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Keith R.A. DeCandido was born and raised in New York City to a family of librarians, which pretty much explains everything. He has written around 50 novels, as well as short stories, nonfiction, eBooks, comic books, and blog entries, many of them in various media universes, among them Star Trek, Sleepy Hollow, Supernatural, World of Warcraft, StarCraft, Leverage, Marvel Comics, Cars, Farscape, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Stargate, Serenity, Resident Evil, Kung Fu Panda, Doctor Who, and more. Among his many works of original fiction are the fantasy police procedural series of novels and short stories that started with Dragon Precinct, as well as a series of urban fantasy short stories set in Key West, Florida, many of which are in Ragnarok & Roll: Tales of Cassie Zukav, Weirdness Magnet. Keith is also an editor (having supervised several book lines and put together dozens of anthologies), musician (percussionist for the Don't Quit Your Day Job Players, the Boogie Knights, and others), and a second-degree black belt in Kenshikai karate (he both trains and teaches). He still lives in New York City with various humans and animals.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Antoine D. Reid VINE VOICE on October 1, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Having read and made reviews of all the "A Time to..." novels, it's rather surprising to think of where this series has come from since Feb. till now. The "A Time to..." series chose to explain what led to all the rather shocking change of events seen in the last motion picture, Star Trek Nemesis. One of the problems with the last movie was that there was a lot left unsaid, unseen, and unexplained. The mission is rather big; try to provide a back story that adds to the movie and builds up that emotional drive that carries the Next Generation crew out and into their new lives.

"War/Peace" is the finale to this series. Just to be fair, I felt it did have a few flaws. First, the Klingons. The previous duology, "A Time to Kill/Heal" dealt with an emotional event that shook the Enterprise crew to their very core and took the reader on a mission that certainly stands out in your memory. This novel picks up where those left off; the political situation isn't all that good, there's a Federation presidential election taking place and the characters all have decisions about their lives to make. The Klingon plot, I felt, should have been addressed more so in the past two novels than here. It seemed a bit distracting and out of place to have to deal with the Klingon's reactions to Tezwa. If you didn't read the past two novels, you won't truly understand the half of the complex situation.

What I also felt was a flaw in the novel was that the synopsis hypes up an inspection which does play a role in the book but not one of monumental porpotions. It's there, it happens, it helps pull the plot along. I was expecting Riker to be questioned and pushed more while he really has little to do with the Enterprise's inspection. The true plot is left unsaid.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Sxottlan on June 8, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The A Time To series reaches its surprisingly low-key climax in A Time for War, A Time for Peace. Most of the story threads from the past eight books come together for a sort of a "day in the life" of different elements of the Federation from its embassy on Qo'noS to a Starfleet vessel inspection to the election of a new Federation president. This makes for one of the more unique books in the series and while not the best (that honor still goes to A Time to Kill), it's still mildly entertaining, infuriating story turns and all...

I had to chuckle reading the backcover plot synopsis and how it describes Commander Riker's plans for a wedding and promotion "soured by a brutal, high-level inspection of the ship from which the crew may not escape unscathed." That was over-stating things just a tad bit as it really ended up being probably the least fleshed out story thread in the book and I never felt as if careers would be ruined over it. At least it was a chance for Scotty to come back onboard. The subplot at the end involving finding Kahless was interesting in reading his point of view, though I got the sense the book wanted to dump the character like the televised series liked to pretend that TNG episode never happened.

In general though, all of the different plots were amicable and enjoyable despite being noticably derivative of other films and shows like Die Hard and The West Wing. The former I didn't mind much, but I honestly have to say that I have never been a fan of Sorkin's show or his style and delivery of dialogue. It's always come across as very stagey and delivered by characters that I have never really found to be convincingly real. Unfortunately, some of that surfaces in the back-and-forth between candidate Nan Bacco and her manager and it can grow tiresome.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By JK on November 9, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The series as a whole has been entertaining. Some books were obviously better than others. Admittedly, this one was meant to wrap everything in a nice, neat package....and, it accomplished that. Unfortunately, to achieve that, the book never really went too indepth to any of the plots...perhaps, if this had been made into a 2 book storyline, that would have been achieved. Its ironic that my biggest complaints regarding several of the other storylines is that they should not have been drug across 2 books.

All in all, an enjoyable read, but not terrific.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on November 23, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
The finale to not only a book series, but a finale for the entire TNG crew. A much better and fitting finale than was given to the fans in the shaky Nemesis feature.

Writer Keith R. A. Decandido is one of the best Trek authors currently writing for pocket books and this book doesn't disappoint.

Genuine character development from the TNG crew was a rarity even on the TV show, and the 'A Time To...' series gave us growth and development from characters that have been positively stagnant in the TNG movie era.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Daniel Delaney on January 1, 2014
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I came to this work through the author and not through the series, so I missed some of the threads stemming from the prior works. However, anyone with a working knowledge of the Next Gen or Deep Space Nine TV series should be able to quickly get into seeing all of your old screen heroes on the page in new adventures.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Fr. Robert F. Lyons on August 4, 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Following a nine book series chronicling a year in the life of the Enterprise-E, Keith R.A. DeCandido makes an appearance in this wonderful series to wrap together loose ends, and to, at the same time, unknot the string for the future of the Star Trek novel franchise.

"A Time for War, A Time for Peace" follows David Mack's stellar dulogy, and in bringing the series to a conclusion is able to easily outdo what most would expect from a `mere' wrapup book.

Make no mistake, this is no mere wrapup book.

It's easiest to begin by citing the two most 'unsatisfying' aspects of the novel first, mainly because there were really only two that came close to deserving the adjective unsatisfying.

In the months of intrigue, backstabbing, plotting, and death that has been wrought throughout the "A Time to..." series, we have seen how, at her core, the Federation was being run by a cadre of over-ambitious, though well-intended, politicos. With hands dabbling in everything from cover-ups to Section 31, and with the subsequent resignation of President Zife, one would have expected a much more heated (and more detailed) telling of the story directly surrounding the presidential election. Of any storyline in the book, this one got an underwhelming treatment - and yet it remains a strong contribution to the Star Trek ethos. (It helps if one knows that a follow-on novel, "Articles of the Federation" is forthcoming from DeCandido, who promises that it will provide the reader with the political intrigue and `West Wing' quality that many expected when learning of this aspect of the "War/Peace" story.)

The other relatively weak storyline, and the one I found even more 'unsatisfying', was the inspection of the Enterprise.
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