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Stone and Anvil (Star Trek: New Frontier) Hardcover – October 28, 2003

4.2 out of 5 stars 28 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


Dreamwatch [Peter David] effortlessly makes the most of his own characters while developing some from small-screen Trek. -- Review

About the Author

Peter David is a prolific Star Trek author whose novels include IMZADI, TRIANGLE, Q-IN-LAW, Q-SQUARED and the NEW FRONTIER series, featuring Captain Mackenzie Calhoun and the crew of the USS Excalibur, specially created for Pocket Books.

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Product Details

  • Series: Star Trek: New Frontier (Book 14)
  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Star Trek; 1 Poc edition (October 28, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0743429575
  • ISBN-13: 978-0743429573
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.1 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,486,171 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Peter David has done it once again. We waited two years for the conclusion of the Beings saga, and we were all very relieved not to have to wait so long to see the resolution of Gleau's murder. I'll get the prose praise out of the way; David writes with a flourish, an edge-of-your seat pace that is somewhat rare in this selective genre. His character development is second-to-none, and it is easy to believe that he cares for each one of them. There are a few tongue-in-cheek references peppered throughout the book; I had to laugh when Picard comments that he would never be able to run a school for gifted youngsters.
The focus here is on Calhoun, Shelby, Janos, and Kebron; at least, in the present. It is fascinating to see the new (and, in my opinion, improved) Kebron handle the investigation; he draws upon hard-boiled detectives of "old" and adamantly refused to believe that Janos was responsible for the murder of the manipulative, unlamented Gleau. His search takes him in new directions, and it is here where Calhoun ponders his past at Starfleet academy.
Calhoun recalls his savage days, his first meeting with Shelby, his roommate experience. We also see a rather laid-back Jellico (sort of) and finally have a lot of innuendo exposed. This reflection leads to a point when Calhoun finally comes to head with his savage side...and the ultimate reconciliation of savage and civilized soldier. We see a Calhoun who was so certain of himself, yet at the same time vulnerable. The progression of feelings he has for Shelby drives this point across quite well. As does his recollection of meeting Janos for the first time; one has certain expectations of meeting a white-furred creature after coming out of a fight for survival.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Mackenzie Calhoun isn't Starfleet's typical captain, nor did he spring from a pampered background. On his homeworld, he was a warlord at age 20, a man who led an almost conquered people to rebellion and eventual victory with cunning and courage. In STONE AND ANVIL, Peter David takes the readers on a whirlwind trip that exposes Calhoun's beginnings, his four years at Starfleet Academy, and his captaincy. After a crewman aboard his wife's ship is killed by another crewman, Calhoun shoulders the harsh burden of finding out what truly happened. That trail leads back to secrets about his homeworld, his own past, and a change in his present and future. Janos, an incredible creature and now one with a human intelligence and Starfleet training, hangs in the balance, his life forfeit if he truly is the murderer everyone believes him to be.

Peter David writes in the Star Trek universe, several product lines as well as the New Frontier line he created, fantasy novels, and hundreds of comic books for DC and Marvel. His Sir Apropos fantasy novels are well-received, his run on HULK and SUPERGIRL unsurpassed, and movie novelizations of FANTASTIC FOUR and other lead new fans to him all the time.

STONE AND ANVIL is a lightning-paced read with a lot of backstory and deep characterization. Told on two time tracks, the present involving the murder and Mackenzie Calhoun's Starfleet Academy days, the novel ties both up in a blistering climax that proves one can't have been told without the other. For sheer phaser-in-your-face, can't-put-it-down-till-you've-finished-it, the novel is a guilty pleasure. Maybe your life won't be changed as a result, but you'll be glad you spent the few hours it takes to read it.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
"Stone and Anvil" deals with the aftermath of the murder of Science Officer Gleau, which was discovered at the end of the previous book in the series. Zac Kebron struggles to prove that a friend could not have committed the murder, even as all the evidence is stacked against his goal.

Also in the book is an interleaved account of Mac and Eppy's Academy days, along with the very surprising story of how Mac performed on the Kobyashi Maru test. A link from an incident in the Academy years to the current event provides a satisfying double surprise for the ending.

As is Peter David's style, there is plenty of humor in the book, some of which caused me to laugh or chuckle out loud. His style is always entertaining, never boring, and often humorous. As much as I've enjoyed books following up on the various TV series, the New Frontier books have over the years outshone them to become my very favorite Star Trek books. Kudos, Peter!!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
There were flaws, to be sure. I never have cared for the character of Shelby, and I still don't (although there was a scene in which she was absolutely marvellous, an indication that David's actually allowing the character to grow) and the ending was more of a downer than I expect out of Peter David. But in general, the "main" plot was interesting enough, though by itself might not have quite made it to four stars. But the flashback scenes to Calhoun's days at Starfleet Academy were marvellous, even if I still don't understand what he's EVER seen in Shelby, or what she sees in him, given how little she respects everything that he's about. That relationship has always struck me as just too artificial, something OBVIOUSLY forced by the author for cheap plot conflict, rather than something that grew out of the characters naturally.

I think this may actually be the first book in this series that can actually stand on its own; granted, we had a bit of a teaser for the beginning at the end of the last book, but that's rehashed at the beginning of this one, and it actually has a full story (TWO full stories, from one way of looking at it) complete with ending. David should do this more often.
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