It looks like it will be extremely similar to the Star Wars ones; The Jedi Path and the Sith one. They were nice little hardbacks with really good information; and came in neat little special container holder with added frills. Great for a collector, but just for a book not so much. I ended up waiting till they re-released just the book without all the added stuff for a lot lower cost.
Looks sweet, I have the Star Wars books and really enjoyed them, gimmicky, quick reads sure, but they really feel like something right out of the universe, more of a novelty than reading material though. I wonder why they didn't carry this through more of the Star Trek timeline, 2311 is just before where next gen starts, that's a huge piece of the ST canon they've left out. Guess they have plans for a followup book.
Because unfortunately, to have Artist do higher quality paintings or CG Artist do photo realistic images of certain events cost a lot more per image than what they are using or willing to pay.
I walked into a book store just last week(they do still exist!) and went to the Sci-Fi section. Well in terms of Illustrated books, with no new Star Wars movies, animations or TV shows, I saw 5 brand new fully illustrated encyclopedic sized books. One had so much Artwork I was wondering how they could even afford to make that book. My experience with the Trek Licensing and wanting to do a book like that, based on what Pocket Books/ Simon and Schuster would pay, even if we cut our rates substantially, would have paid for maybe 10 pages of a book that was going to be 140 pages. Now, the Star Wars books artist and writers have got to be making some real money or they wouldn't do it. Come on, there only so much free work people can do. However, the one good thing about Lucasfilm, he has a kajillian dollars and if the book costs $50,000.00 to make, then so what. He keeps his product out there in view, always in the publics mind. Of the same row, ( and i had to look) I found exactly two Trek books. Old ones I worked on. It was sad. Problem with Trek is that they don't have a "Lucas", someone who will take charge of that cash cow and milk it for all it's worth for as long as it takes. No one is responsible, no one wants to put there heads on the line. It's too bad. Because if you offered books like I saw for Star Wars Universes but for Trek, I'd be scooping em up as a fan. If they matched quality. I felt and still feel no one at Paramount other that Gene himself ever really saw the potential for the concept of Star Trek, whether there is a movie or show on or not. Luckily, the Brits have not completely given up and dove in, if not for them, there'd be bloody almost nothing except for the SOTL Calendar Mojo and I created. My semi-unimportant two Canadian cents.
I cannot say it is worth the price. The audio base is a neat gimmick, but it only has one sound clip. The interior artwork is quite weak for a book of this caliber, the documents are much better in quality. This could have done as a $30 range hardback and would be a much better value at that price point. Very disappointed in the production value.
I have to disagree Scott...this book is fantastic. I really believe this sets the standard for how future Star Trek reference books should be presented. You can tell that David really wanted to present a quality product, and I think that he did.
N.C. The book is really a nice product. It is what they call an "in-universe" publication. The whole idea is to make you feel like you are reading a history text and it works! Even the author is listed as a "historian." The main complaint is the pictures are hand-drawn instead of actual stock footage. I like this. Others don't. It feels more authentic. Let's face it...every historical account can't have actual pictures, so the contributor describes the events, and an artist represents it in a picture; kind of how it is in real history books. As far as the price, the quality is excellent. When I set this on my stand, it looks like a museum piece and that's the whole point. If you are a trekkie like me, then yes it is worth it. For the more casual fan I would recommend a Star Trek encyclopedia or other reference book. I hope this helps!