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The Children of Kings

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A distress call goes out from a Federation outpost near the Klingon border. The U.S.S. Enterprise, under the command of Captain Christopher Pike, responds. Starbase 18 lies in ruin. There are no survivors. And there is no clue as to who is responsible for the attack, until Captain Pike’s brilliant science officer discovers a means of retrieving parts of the station’s log. A distress call goes out from a Federation outpost near the Klingon border. The U.S.S. Enterprise, under the command of Captain Christopher Pike, responds. Starbase 18 lies in ruin. There are no survivors. And there is no clue as to who is responsible for the attack, until Captain Pike’s brilliant science officer discovers a means of retrieving parts of the station’s log. Lieutenant Spock has detected signs of a unique energy signature, one that he believes is Klingon. There are unsubstantiated reports that the Klingon Empire has made a technological leap forward and created a cloaking device—code-named Black Snow Seven—that can shield their ships from even the most advanced sensors. The destruction of the base and the unique energy signature that remains prove that the Empire has succeeded. For generations the Orions have been known as pirates,operating at the margins, outside of legal conventions. A proud and powerful race, the Orions were once a major force in the sector, and they have been using the tension between the Klingon Empire and the Federation to rebuild their power. Captain Pike is charged with trying to foster cooperation between the Orions and the Federation. A distress call from an Orion vessel offers him the perfect opportunity. But the Orion ship lies in disputed space long claimed by the Klingon Empire, and crossing it could be the spark that sets off an interstellar war.


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A distress call goes out from a Federation outpost near the Klingon border. The U.S.S. Enterprise, under the command of Captain Christopher Pike, responds. Starbase 18 lies in ruin. There are no survivors. And there is no clue as to who is responsible for the attack, until Captain Pike’s brilliant science officer discovers a means of retrieving parts of the station’s log. A distress call goes out from a Federation outpost near the Klingon border. The U.S.S. Enterprise, under the command of Captain Christopher Pike, responds. Starbase 18 lies in ruin. There are no survivors. And there is no clue as to who is responsible for the attack, until Captain Pike’s brilliant science officer discovers a means of retrieving parts of the station’s log. Lieutenant Spock has detected signs of a unique energy signature, one that he believes is Klingon. There are unsubstantiated reports that the Klingon Empire has made a technological leap forward and created a cloaking device—code-named Black Snow Seven—that can shield their ships from even the most advanced sensors. The destruction of the base and the unique energy signature that remains prove that the Empire has succeeded. For generations the Orions have been known as pirates,operating at the margins, outside of legal conventions. A proud and powerful race, the Orions were once a major force in the sector, and they have been using the tension between the Klingon Empire and the Federation to rebuild their power. Captain Pike is charged with trying to foster cooperation between the Orions and the Federation. A distress call from an Orion vessel offers him the perfect opportunity. But the Orion ship lies in disputed space long claimed by the Klingon Empire, and crossing it could be the spark that sets off an interstellar war.

30 review for The Children of Kings

  1. 4 out of 5

    Dan

    Confusing plot and setting elements, as well as a plot that leaves a number of threads dangling (What will become of the Orion government? What will the fall-out with the Klingons and Starfleet Intelligence be?) made this a less-than-enjoyable reading experience. This book had a lot of potential, and I feel it would have been much better had Mr. Stern stuck with one particular continuity rather than muddying the issue. Full review: http://treklit.blogspot.com/2011/11/c... Confusing plot and setting elements, as well as a plot that leaves a number of threads dangling (What will become of the Orion government? What will the fall-out with the Klingons and Starfleet Intelligence be?) made this a less-than-enjoyable reading experience. This book had a lot of potential, and I feel it would have been much better had Mr. Stern stuck with one particular continuity rather than muddying the issue. Full review: http://treklit.blogspot.com/2011/11/c...

  2. 4 out of 5

    Bernard Doddema Jr

    The first real alternate timeline novel from the JJ Trekverse. I guess in this book they've already had first contact with the Ferengi. Heck, they're talking about the Trade Commission so they've known them for some time. It's slow going. Good but definitely has a different flavor. The first real alternate timeline novel from the JJ Trekverse. I guess in this book they've already had first contact with the Ferengi. Heck, they're talking about the Trade Commission so they've known them for some time. It's slow going. Good but definitely has a different flavor.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Kukwa

    Well now...this was unexpected. Not only is this a novel set in the earliest days of Pike's captaincy of the Enterprise (new people around him, strained opinions and relationships), but the entire story is styled as a Tom Clancy thriller, making this mid-23rd century setting feel far more dangerous and uncomfortable than it feels in Kirk's time. There is also some superb wit and humour in this novel, including a sequence with Pike, a bath tub, and a host of people walking in and out of his quart Well now...this was unexpected. Not only is this a novel set in the earliest days of Pike's captaincy of the Enterprise (new people around him, strained opinions and relationships), but the entire story is styled as a Tom Clancy thriller, making this mid-23rd century setting feel far more dangerous and uncomfortable than it feels in Kirk's time. There is also some superb wit and humour in this novel, including a sequence with Pike, a bath tub, and a host of people walking in and out of his quarters that can stand tall with any screwball comedy. Dave Stern should have written far more Trek novels than he has to date.

  4. 4 out of 5

    David King

    “The Children of Kings” by Dave Stern is the latest book in my challenge to try and read all the Star Trek novels in chronological order. To be honest, I am not that sure if I read this novel in exactly the correct place as it more or less lives in its own continuity. Either way though, the story does offer the reader a rare insight into Pike’s era as Captain of the Enterprise. The story follows Captain Pike and his crew as they investigate a remote Federation base that appears to have been attac “The Children of Kings” by Dave Stern is the latest book in my challenge to try and read all the Star Trek novels in chronological order. To be honest, I am not that sure if I read this novel in exactly the correct place as it more or less lives in its own continuity. Either way though, the story does offer the reader a rare insight into Pike’s era as Captain of the Enterprise. The story follows Captain Pike and his crew as they investigate a remote Federation base that appears to have been attacked and destroyed by Klingons. Whilst most of the crew are quick to condemn the Klingons, a few of them suspect there is something else afoot and begin to question some of the findings. Things get even worse however when they pick up a distress call from an Orion ship and their attempt to assist results in several of the crew being captured and the apparent death of Pike himself. Before long, tensions begin to escalate and the risk of war between the Federation and the Klingon Empire is a real possibility. I found the whole thing to be an enjoyable adventure that really did capture the cowboy diplomacy style of Star Trek’s original series. Yes this did mean at times the story was a little formulaic, but it was still fun to follow and I really appreciated the chance to learn a little more about the Orion’s culture and some characters that we know little about. One weak point in the story though was the lack of real tension. The reader always knows that Pike can’t really be dead and any potential surprises are lost by the fact you get to follow both the crew on board the Enterprise and those that have been captured. As I mentioned earlier in the review, the book does appear to be in its own continuity which did at times cause a little bit of confusion as I read it. There are various inconsistencies with canon and for some reason the author’s note stating that the story is set as prequel to the 2009 JJ Abrams movie doesn’t appear until the end of the novel. Even with this clarification, I was still a little perplexed when I put the book down as during the move it is stated that we were witnessing the maiden voyage of the Enterprise so couldn’t understand how I was seeing earlier voyages. However, since finishing this book I have started to read the graphic novel series that serves as a prequel to the 2nd JJ Abrams movie and those stories contain information that there was a previous ship called the Enterprise previously captained by Robert April so I have just assumed that this story was set on that ship. It is just unfortunate that the author’s note about which universe the book is set appears at the beginning of the story as it could have stopped some of the confusion about things that didn’t fit right with standard canon. Also, it would have been nice to see a form of clarification that this wasn’t the same Enterprise as seen in the movie assuming that I am right in my belief that it didn’t. In addition, the cover itself appears to show the prime universe Pike & Spock which really doesn’t help with a reader trying to understand the overall setting. Overall, this was a fun and enjoyable Star Trek adventure although I can imagine that some of the canon inconsistencies could irritate some readers even with the caveat that the story is set in the JJ Abrams universe.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Randy

    Starbase 18 has been destroyed, apparently by the Klingons. Pike and the Enterprise are sent to check it out and make overtures to the Orions about an alliance to deal with Klingons. They get an emergency call from an Orion ship asking for medical help, specifically requesting Dr. Philip Boyce, the Enterprise's Chief Medical Officer. Boyce is torn about going. His daughter, a scientist, was among the 87 people killed in the destruction of the base. Things are not as they seem. Both the Federation a Starbase 18 has been destroyed, apparently by the Klingons. Pike and the Enterprise are sent to check it out and make overtures to the Orions about an alliance to deal with Klingons. They get an emergency call from an Orion ship asking for medical help, specifically requesting Dr. Philip Boyce, the Enterprise's Chief Medical Officer. Boyce is torn about going. His daughter, a scientist, was among the 87 people killed in the destruction of the base. Things are not as they seem. Both the Federation and the Klingons are girding for a fight. Once Pike and Boyce are aboard the Orion ship, things start to fall apart. Boyce is taken prisoner, most of the security is killed, and Pike dies trying to escape in the shuttle craft. The Enterprise gets a new captain and both Lieutenant Spock, the science officer, and Number One, the First Officer, discover a tap on the ship's computers, as well as inklings that a faction in the Federation wants a war with the Klingons. I only gave it four stars because we KNOW Pike isn't really dead, but he's kept off stage for a major porion of the book, only to reappear to save the day, albeit with a little trouble.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Emma

    Overall, this novel was fairly entertaining. I was never bored while reading it. However, the plot seemed a little disorganized and difficult to follow with lots of open ends. The "flashbacks" were unnecessary and disorienting as well. This novel also had very little to do with Spock (or even Pike) and a lot of the plot centered around Dr. Boyce. The cover and summary imply Spock to be a bigger character in the story than he is. There should have been more mention of Boyce's extensive involvement Overall, this novel was fairly entertaining. I was never bored while reading it. However, the plot seemed a little disorganized and difficult to follow with lots of open ends. The "flashbacks" were unnecessary and disorienting as well. This novel also had very little to do with Spock (or even Pike) and a lot of the plot centered around Dr. Boyce. The cover and summary imply Spock to be a bigger character in the story than he is. There should have been more mention of Boyce's extensive involvement with the plot. Reading the author's note, I was surprised by the author mentioning this was supposed to be a Kelvin-verse novel. It is not shown to be and, additionally, is not canon compliant with the events of the Kelvin universe on multiple accounts.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Brayden Raymond

    This was a good one. Of course for me a Captain Pike fan it was delightful (needs more Pike though he has great moments.) I really liked the conflict between the Klingons, Federation and Orion's it set the tone very well for what era this is set in and honestly despite the fact the author wrote this with the mindset of it being a prequel to 2009s Star Trek film I think it fits fairly well as a prequel to the upcoming Strange New World's show. Aside from what I might call a slightly off character This was a good one. Of course for me a Captain Pike fan it was delightful (needs more Pike though he has great moments.) I really liked the conflict between the Klingons, Federation and Orion's it set the tone very well for what era this is set in and honestly despite the fact the author wrote this with the mindset of it being a prequel to 2009s Star Trek film I think it fits fairly well as a prequel to the upcoming Strange New World's show. Aside from what I might call a slightly off characterization of Pike compared to how Anson Mount plays him. All said and done this was delightful.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Greg

    WELL, WHAT A SURPRISE THIS BOOK TURNED OUT TO BE. A TOS era novel, sans Kirk, McCoy, Uhura, Scotty and Bones, THE CHILDREN OF KINGS leaves the reader with “just” Spock, and the legendary but little known Chris Pike. And the Enterprise herself, of course. Not to mention those nasty, treacherous Klingons, who cant be trusted any further than they can be thrown. And not to mention, also, the ruins of Starbase 18. And since we’re not mentioning anything, we certainly wont mention the rumoured cloaki WELL, WHAT A SURPRISE THIS BOOK TURNED OUT TO BE. A TOS era novel, sans Kirk, McCoy, Uhura, Scotty and Bones, THE CHILDREN OF KINGS leaves the reader with “just” Spock, and the legendary but little known Chris Pike. And the Enterprise herself, of course. Not to mention those nasty, treacherous Klingons, who cant be trusted any further than they can be thrown. And not to mention, also, the ruins of Starbase 18. And since we’re not mentioning anything, we certainly wont mention the rumoured cloaking device just developed by (SPOILERS) or those equally nasty Orion Syndicate fellows that have turned up out of the blue just to add some spice into the mix. TCOK also happens to leave the reader in a state of breathless excitement at just about the end to every chapter. And if not every chapter, then certainly breathless at the cliff hanger endings that can be found at the end of the book’s three parts. And so it looks like the Klingons are hell bent on starting yet another interstellar war. The Enterprise has proof this time (or do they?) but just when everything is about to all come together, it all falls apart. SPOILERS once more prevent me from elaborating but what i can say is that the genius of Spock is that he will fit right into any Trek novel, as long as its written by a hugely talented writer with an exceptional idea and a complete grasp of the Trek Universe the book is set in. But of course thats a no brainer, given that TCOK was written by the legendary DAVID STERN. Anyway, reading this book is a surreal experience. You tend to fly through it at lightspeed, looking up from the pages only to discover that you have read fifty pages in a session when you normally only manage to read twenty. There’s little to no humour in the tale (when has war, or even the threat of it ever been funny?) but there's certainly plenty of emotion with just about every character in the book, both major and minor. The atmospehre is perfect, the action (including hand to hand fight scenes) are brilliant, and your classic sense of sci fi wonder prevails at just about every opportunity. Nothing is what it seems in TCOK, and the reader will discover in yet another surprise that Mr Stern wrote it as a prequel to the 2009 JJ Abrams reboot film. Plot twist follows plot twist follows major character death follows plot twist, so dont believe what you read unless its in print, in which case, you’d better believe it. The book’s ultimate resolution is a beauty, too, and it borders on the brilliant side of things. Perfectly appropriate for that to be the case, too, since the story starts out and hinges on events occurring in the borderlands (aka nautral zone in old school speak) and that is why i dont hesitate to award this book five stars. Only the classics and all time great Trek novels are worthy of this ranking, so I guess this book qualifies. Oh, it qualifies easily. The quintessential Trek experience.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Tommy Verhaegen

    Starfleet Intelligence at its worst in a story with captain Pike and mister Spock in major roles. Klingons, Orions, Vulcans and Terrans: always an explosive mix, even more when each of the species have to handle internal treason as well as a near-war situation. Al the elements are there to have a great book but somehow something in the mix does not come through, it is just a good book. Too many vague spots and way too fast at the end, as if part 2 had to be squeezed in a last chapter in stead of Starfleet Intelligence at its worst in a story with captain Pike and mister Spock in major roles. Klingons, Orions, Vulcans and Terrans: always an explosive mix, even more when each of the species have to handle internal treason as well as a near-war situation. Al the elements are there to have a great book but somehow something in the mix does not come through, it is just a good book. Too many vague spots and way too fast at the end, as if part 2 had to be squeezed in a last chapter in stead of its own volume.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Honolulu Polkadot

    Overall dry and boring Very dry, no action, very boring. Too much money for the little star trek you actually get. I would not recommend this book.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Rob

    Loved reading about Captain Pike, Number one and Spock. The Cage remains one of my favourite TOS episodes. I always liked Captain Pike and thought he would have been great in TOS. We'll always love Captain Kirk though. This book moves the pace along quite well, and I enjoyed the development of the Orion society in the microcosm of the Orion Talith's ship. The plotlines hold together quite well except for a few things. It's surprising that the Orions pretty well gave the federation prisoners such Loved reading about Captain Pike, Number one and Spock. The Cage remains one of my favourite TOS episodes. I always liked Captain Pike and thought he would have been great in TOS. We'll always love Captain Kirk though. This book moves the pace along quite well, and I enjoyed the development of the Orion society in the microcosm of the Orion Talith's ship. The plotlines hold together quite well except for a few things. It's surprising that the Orions pretty well gave the federation prisoners such unfettered access to their computer system they were able to spend several days analyzing the ships systems and set in motion a cascade of failures that would result in the ships destruction. Also, the internal coup seemed to go on for a long time - which I wouldn't think possible in such a confined space. Overall a good read.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Betsy

    I enjoyed this more than I expected, since a Star Trek book without Kirk is usually not my thing. But I had no trouble picturing Captain Pike or Doctor Boyce, which is impressive since they had so little screentime to work with. Spock was spot-on, though I never did manage to match Number One in this book to her onscreen counterpart. The story was well done and shed some light on the pre-Kirk years. My one little quibble was that everyone kept referring to Klingon ships as Warbirds, which are Ro I enjoyed this more than I expected, since a Star Trek book without Kirk is usually not my thing. But I had no trouble picturing Captain Pike or Doctor Boyce, which is impressive since they had so little screentime to work with. Spock was spot-on, though I never did manage to match Number One in this book to her onscreen counterpart. The story was well done and shed some light on the pre-Kirk years. My one little quibble was that everyone kept referring to Klingon ships as Warbirds, which are Romulan ships. Klingon ships are Birds of Prey. But that's a small nitpick for an otherwise strong Trek novel.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Rob Cook

    I originally bought this back in 2010(!) as I wanted to read a Captain Pike era novel. Just over 8 years later I finally got round to reading it and sadly it was not worth the wait. The characterisation doesn't always run true and the writing isn't always an easy read. With lots of short sentences. To describe events. Although the cover art depicts Jeffrey Hunter and Leonard Nimoy, the author admits at the end of the book that it is set in the Kelvin universe (which could explain the characterisat I originally bought this back in 2010(!) as I wanted to read a Captain Pike era novel. Just over 8 years later I finally got round to reading it and sadly it was not worth the wait. The characterisation doesn't always run true and the writing isn't always an easy read. With lots of short sentences. To describe events. Although the cover art depicts Jeffrey Hunter and Leonard Nimoy, the author admits at the end of the book that it is set in the Kelvin universe (which could explain the characterisation being off) but doesn't explain the classic cast on the cover? Overall I found this disappointing.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Phillip Ojeda

    Love the story about a previous Captain of the Enterprise. Found this book interesting but did not like that fact that there were so many females in high positions. Can not see that happening. If you are familiar with the episode "The Cage" from Star Trek the original series, I expected Number 1 to be the first female Captain and Admiral in Star Fleet. I was not disappointed but this book had a lot of ear marks of todays wokeness even though it is from 2010. I would recommend it to any and all S Love the story about a previous Captain of the Enterprise. Found this book interesting but did not like that fact that there were so many females in high positions. Can not see that happening. If you are familiar with the episode "The Cage" from Star Trek the original series, I expected Number 1 to be the first female Captain and Admiral in Star Fleet. I was not disappointed but this book had a lot of ear marks of todays wokeness even though it is from 2010. I would recommend it to any and all Star Trek fans, good reading and Live Long and Prosper.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Du

    This churns like butter. Really it has the same qualities of a Star Trek episode, some charm, some intelligence, some intruqie, but not the most complexly written scifi you've had the benefit of enjoying. This churns like butter. Really it has the same qualities of a Star Trek episode, some charm, some intelligence, some intruqie, but not the most complexly written scifi you've had the benefit of enjoying.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Everett

    Meh. It was ok but nothing to write home about.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Oz Trekkie

    Fantastic novel. Kept you guessing all the way through the novel as to what would happen next. A great look at the Pike era on Enterprise.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Mark Oppenlander

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This book was OK, but I really wanted to like it more. David Stern was the editor for the Pocket Books Star Trek series for a number of years and he certainly knows his way around the characters and the Trek universe. He draws from TOS episodes "The Cage" and "The Enterprise Incident," as well as including elements from some of the previous Trek novelizations. His writing style is competent, if not eceptional. So why didn't this book thrill me the way I expected? First, you should know that this This book was OK, but I really wanted to like it more. David Stern was the editor for the Pocket Books Star Trek series for a number of years and he certainly knows his way around the characters and the Trek universe. He draws from TOS episodes "The Cage" and "The Enterprise Incident," as well as including elements from some of the previous Trek novelizations. His writing style is competent, if not eceptional. So why didn't this book thrill me the way I expected? First, you should know that this tale is set in the Christopher Pike captained era of the USS Enterprise. Although Pike, Spock and Number One are all present and are central to the plot, the story focuses mostly on the character of Doctor Philip Boyce. Boyce is captured by Orion pirates and asked to help them develop a serum they need to keep their leader alive and in command. However, if that sounds straightforward, it is not. This is not a simple story. The book has more plot elements than you can shake a Denebian slime devil at. There are of course the aforementioned Orion pirates who are involved in an inter-clan sruggle. There is also potential war with the Klingons on the table, possible alliances for the Federation with both the Klingons and the Orions, several types of new or ancient alien technology (including an image projecttor, a cloaking device and possible "Fountain of Youth" serum), medical problems to solve, insurrection, mutiny, possible traitors in the midst, a fair amount of cloak and dagger and much, much more. Folded into this already overdeveloped fruit cake mix of a plot are flashbacks into Boyce's past, explaining his ambivalence toward his current research and his anger at the Orions and Klingons. The book is nearly 400 pages, but it's just not long enough to sustain all of these pieces. Stern does an admirable job resolving everything in the end, but the payoffs come too quickly and neatly. One hardly has time to fully understand the joke, before the punch-line has been delivered. So ultimately the book's problem is a simple storytelling one: an author must deliver on what they promise. But more than that, when an author delivers on what they promised, they must take the time to do it right. Don't promise me the world and hand me a globe. It may look the same, but it's not.

  19. 4 out of 5

    MaryEllen

    For my full review, visit my blog at http://maryellenherrera.com/2012/06/1... The Children of Kings brings to life one of the commanding adventures of Christopher Pike, the second captain of the starship Enterprise, and this galactic adventure involves the Klingon and the Orion races. Starbase 18 lies in ruins, believed to have been attacked by the Klingons. As Captain Pike investigates the destruction of the starbase, he responds to a distress call sent out by the Orions; who in turn capture Cap For my full review, visit my blog at http://maryellenherrera.com/2012/06/1... The Children of Kings brings to life one of the commanding adventures of Christopher Pike, the second captain of the starship Enterprise, and this galactic adventure involves the Klingon and the Orion races. Starbase 18 lies in ruins, believed to have been attacked by the Klingons. As Captain Pike investigates the destruction of the starbase, he responds to a distress call sent out by the Orions; who in turn capture Captain Pike and those in the rescue party. Now it’s up to Spock and first officer Number One to discover who actually destroyed Starbase 18 while finding a way to safely return Captain Pike to the Enterprise. Any missteps could ultimately result in an interstellar war! This book has 400 pages of adventure! From the beginning of the book I was escorted to the Enterprise and immediately engrossed in the mystery of the story – who destroyed Starbase 18? Since I am a fan of the original Star Trek series, it was fun getting to know more about Captain Pike and his crew. And yes, I did find myself thinking WWKD (what would Kirk do)? But this didn’t subtract from the wonderful story the author, David Stern, created. The story had great twists which kept me reading. The more I read, the more I began to identify with this new crew and I began to like the characters and what they brought to this adventure in space. Plus there was Spock; he helped bridge the gap between the Enterprise I knew and this Enterprise crew, characters I began to grow fond of.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Dindy

    I mostly enjoyed The Children of Kings by David Stern. This novel is based, not on Classic Trek, but on the reboot of Classic Trek, hence some of the points that may seem like continuity errors such as the mention of the Ferengi Alliance as an intelligence source. Overall, it was fun to read a novel about Captain Christopher Pike's Enterprise, and about Doctor Boyce, Number One and an early rendition of Spock. One of the fun things about the Star Trek novels is the ability to learn more about ch I mostly enjoyed The Children of Kings by David Stern. This novel is based, not on Classic Trek, but on the reboot of Classic Trek, hence some of the points that may seem like continuity errors such as the mention of the Ferengi Alliance as an intelligence source. Overall, it was fun to read a novel about Captain Christopher Pike's Enterprise, and about Doctor Boyce, Number One and an early rendition of Spock. One of the fun things about the Star Trek novels is the ability to learn more about characters that don't necessarily get as much play in the TV shows and movies. This book has a fairly complex storyline about the Orions and the Klingons. When the Enterprise responds to a distress call from Starbase 18, they find the starbase in ruins, and since it is near the Klingon border, the assumption is that the Klingons destroyed it. While investigating the destruction of the starbase, they receive a distress call from an Orion ship. In order to respond, they will have to cross through Klingon space and risk setting off an interstellar war. My main quibble with the book is that the ending happens much too quickly. After almost dragging the story through a couple of hundred pages, suddenly the book is over, leaving me with several unanswered questions about the resolution. However, up until about page 300, I was thoroughly enjoying the novel. Casual fans of the series will enjoy this book much more than hardcore fans who don't approve of the reboot. I'm a pretty hardcore fan, but I do like the reboot, so I enjoyed this novel.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Jimyanni

    An enjoyable and well-crafted read; there are some possible discrepancies between background details in this book and the established Trek universe, which there is some attempt to gloss over by claiming that the book is set in the timeline of the new movies, rather than the original series. In any case, those potential discrepancies have little to no effect on the story, and the characters and plot are handled well. I dock it a star only because we see no indication of there being any fallout fr An enjoyable and well-crafted read; there are some possible discrepancies between background details in this book and the established Trek universe, which there is some attempt to gloss over by claiming that the book is set in the timeline of the new movies, rather than the original series. In any case, those potential discrepancies have little to no effect on the story, and the characters and plot are handled well. I dock it a star only because we see no indication of there being any fallout from Pike firing on and destroying his own shuttle to prevent Starfleet Intelligence from gaining access to material that he had given his word they would not be allowed access to. More exlanation that that would be an unforgivable spoiler; I feel I'm pushing the envelope to have said that much. But surely, either that little detail had to be left out of everyone's reports, or he would have gotten a talking-to by some higher-up, at the very least, even if they ultimately accepted his decision. The fact that nothing of the sort is even mentioned in the epilogue is just impossible.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jordan Allemann

    Overall, it was good. Sure, it seems to take place in a reality somewhere between the 2009 movie and the original timeline, but that's not a deal breaker. It's a shame that the author didn't just stick to the original timeline since canonistas are put off by the Ferengi, among other nits to pick. This will go down with the rest of the 2010 Trek books that everyone seemed to hate, unfortunately. I will say that the ending was abrupt, given the book's length, and provided no real closure to the sto Overall, it was good. Sure, it seems to take place in a reality somewhere between the 2009 movie and the original timeline, but that's not a deal breaker. It's a shame that the author didn't just stick to the original timeline since canonistas are put off by the Ferengi, among other nits to pick. This will go down with the rest of the 2010 Trek books that everyone seemed to hate, unfortunately. I will say that the ending was abrupt, given the book's length, and provided no real closure to the story. That's why in lobbing off a couple stars.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Michael Norris

    Interesting look at a little seen era of Trek "history". The focus is on Captain Pike and Doctor Boyce as they interact with the Orions following the destruction of Starbase. The Orion culture is give the spotlight here as Stern brings together elements from The Animated Series, Enterprise, Star Trek and the 24th Century series. That informtion was often contradictory but Stern makes it work. A warning to fans of "canon". Turn off your sensors or wind up with an overload. Stern plays it a little Interesting look at a little seen era of Trek "history". The focus is on Captain Pike and Doctor Boyce as they interact with the Orions following the destruction of Starbase. The Orion culture is give the spotlight here as Stern brings together elements from The Animated Series, Enterprise, Star Trek and the 24th Century series. That informtion was often contradictory but Stern makes it work. A warning to fans of "canon". Turn off your sensors or wind up with an overload. Stern plays it a little fast and lose with continuity, but dont let it get in the way of enjoying the story.

  24. 5 out of 5

    John

    This is a very well-written and interesting "Classic Trek" book which explores the crew of the Enterprise before James T. Kick. Sheds light on the mysterious "Number One" (Captain Christopher Pike's female first officer, played by a young Majel Roddenberry in the original pre-Kirk pilot), as well as the green-skinned "Orions". Of course Mr. Spock is there to add familiarity. This novel is part "Space Opera" (the whole thing takes place on ships!) and part "Mystery/Espionage" (the CIA-like "Starf This is a very well-written and interesting "Classic Trek" book which explores the crew of the Enterprise before James T. Kick. Sheds light on the mysterious "Number One" (Captain Christopher Pike's female first officer, played by a young Majel Roddenberry in the original pre-Kirk pilot), as well as the green-skinned "Orions". Of course Mr. Spock is there to add familiarity. This novel is part "Space Opera" (the whole thing takes place on ships!) and part "Mystery/Espionage" (the CIA-like "Starfleet Intelligence" is central to the plot).

  25. 5 out of 5

    Nicolas

    I was hoping for a little insight into Pike and a young Spock, instead they just played supporting roles in an ensemble story. Still, not a bad Trek novel. I like Dr. Boyce, so it was fun to see him in the spotlight. The author states this was set in the 2009 reboot universe. If that's so, I think more could have done to highlight that. And why put Hunter and Nimoy on the cover instead of Greenwood & Quinto? I probably wouldn't have picked it up if that were the case, so I suppose I've answered I was hoping for a little insight into Pike and a young Spock, instead they just played supporting roles in an ensemble story. Still, not a bad Trek novel. I like Dr. Boyce, so it was fun to see him in the spotlight. The author states this was set in the 2009 reboot universe. If that's so, I think more could have done to highlight that. And why put Hunter and Nimoy on the cover instead of Greenwood & Quinto? I probably wouldn't have picked it up if that were the case, so I suppose I've answered my own question.

  26. 4 out of 5

    David Rhodes

    As a former chemist, I spotted the chirality twist a mile a way but still it was a good read. This book is meant to be set in the new timeline however I did not get that sense at all esp as we never saw Spock or Number One on the Enterprise serving under Pike in the that timeframe. I'm happy to think that this is just one of the many, many, many adventures of Captain Christopher Pike before his accident. As a former chemist, I spotted the chirality twist a mile a way but still it was a good read. This book is meant to be set in the new timeline however I did not get that sense at all esp as we never saw Spock or Number One on the Enterprise serving under Pike in the that timeframe. I'm happy to think that this is just one of the many, many, many adventures of Captain Christopher Pike before his accident.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Barnstormer3000

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I liked this, but it was misleading. I was in the mood for 'retro-Trek,' and like the idea of going back to explore the 'Captain Pike' era - and the book is really much more about the ship's doctor than it is about Pike. I was in the mood for the old days of Star Trek when Klingons were bad, and they're not in the book as much as the description would suggest. I liked this, but it was misleading. I was in the mood for 'retro-Trek,' and like the idea of going back to explore the 'Captain Pike' era - and the book is really much more about the ship's doctor than it is about Pike. I was in the mood for the old days of Star Trek when Klingons were bad, and they're not in the book as much as the description would suggest.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Murray Moore

    I enjoyed The Children of Kings it takes place when christopher pike is captain of the Enterprise. Spock is the only character from the original series, the rest are from the first pilot which was used the the two part episode the cage. I enjoyed this look at star trek before Kirk became captain of the Enterprise.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Rachael Lind

    I thought it was very well written. It also stuck to what I thought about Spock and kept him as a logical, awesome charecter. There is also captain Pike, but other than that, they are all new charecters. All very good, with a very good plot. It fits together very well, and it is a recommeded read for any Star Trek Fans, escpecially if they are fans of Spock.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Kevin Hughlett

    This book was difficult for an old Trekker to get through, mainly because of the changes in the Star Trek universe. I remember seeing the original pilot "The Cage" when I was a teenager in the 80s, and it was hard to picture Pike and Boyce as depicted in this novel. I also struggled with the changes such as a cloaking device for the Kljngons, stuff like that. This book was difficult for an old Trekker to get through, mainly because of the changes in the Star Trek universe. I remember seeing the original pilot "The Cage" when I was a teenager in the 80s, and it was hard to picture Pike and Boyce as depicted in this novel. I also struggled with the changes such as a cloaking device for the Kljngons, stuff like that.

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