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Star Trek, The Animated Series: Logs Nine and Ten
Alan Dean Foster
Del Rey, 359 pages

Alan Dean Foster
Alan Dean Foster was born in New York City in 1946 and was raised in Los Angeles. He received a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science and a Master of Fine Arts in Cinema from UCLA in 1968-69 and then spent two years as a copywriter for an advertising and public relations firm in Studio City, CA.

His first sale as a writer was a long Lovecraftian letter, purchased by August Derleth for the bi-annual magazine The Arkham Collector. His first novel, The Tar-Aiym Krang, was published by Ballantine Books in 1972. Many, many novels followed. Alan Dean Foster's correspondence and manuscripts are in the Special Collection of the Hayden Library of Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona. Foster and his wife live in Prescott, Arizona.

Alan Dean Foster Website
ISFDB Bibliography
SF Site Review: Star Trek, The Animated Series: Logs Seven and Eight
SF Site Review: Star Trek, The Animated Series: Logs Five and Six
SF Site Review: Star Trek, The Animated Series: Logs Three and Four
SF Site Review: Star Trek, The Animated Series: Logs One and Two
SF Site Review: The Light-Years Beneath My Feet
SF Site Review: Sliding Scales
SF Site Review: Flinx's Folly
SF Site Review: The Mocking Program
SF Site Review: Dinotopia Lost
SF Site Review: Star Wars: The Approaching Storm
SF Site Review: Interlopers
SF Site Review: Phylogenesis
SF Site Review: Into the Thinking Kingdoms
SF Site Review: Carnivores of Light and Darkness

Past Feature Reviews
A review by Steve Lazarowitz

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Star Trek, The Animated Series: Logs Nine and Ten For the first six volumes, the Star Trek Logs were adaptations of the animated Star Trek series. Starting with volume seven, a single animated episode was not only extended, but added to, creating a novel that was part adaptation and part new episode. This went on for four volumes, after which there were no more animated episodes left to plumb, and the so the series was completed.

More recently, the original ten logs were released in five volumes at the rate of two logs per volume. If you've followed this so far, that means each of the first three volumes contained six stories, while the last two contained two stories each, all with new material added to them. This could have be disastrous, but Alan Dean Foster did a fantastic job of not only adding material, but tying it to the original episode to give it continuity.

This, the last volume of the series, contains two stories. Overall, these were my least favorite stories of the pack. That said, it's still a good read for a Star Trek fan.

The first offering, "BEM," deals with an not very nice BEM (bug-eyed monster for those of you who didn't attend SF school or were born in the 90s). This particular BEM is a Pandronian, a condescending, arrogant, annoying creature, who will remind you of someone you don't like, or perhaps several people. I found this character so annoying, I wanted to shoot the book. Thus, it makes the plight of the Enterprise officers who have to deal diplomatically with the creature far more interesting.

The problem with annoying ambassadors is that they can't be taken out and beaten, even if they deserve it. So it was with "BEM." The plot is fairly simplistic, but decent in an action-adventure sort of way. I don't believe that the storyline justifies an entire novel, however.

The second story in the volume, "The Slaver Weapon," would have been a lot better with some build up, something that didn't occur previously in the series. In the story, a slaver box is located, the remnant of an ancient, technologically advanced civilization. My issue with the story is that it just came out of nowhere. I'd never heard a hint about them before, and suddenly it's like the most important find in the world. And yes, I'm aware that there are a gazillion things that aren't shown about the universe in previous episodes, but the sheer drama required to make it important to me never emerged. I understood that the characters wanted this box desperately, but I wasn't all that interested in it. Curious, certainly, but the vital tension I should have felt was missing, making this story feel weak.

All in all, a disappointing ending to an otherwise enjoyable series. I find myself wondering if it hadn't been read as part of a series, and I'd picked it up as a standalone novel, if I'd still feel the same way.

Copyright © 2007 Steve Lazarowitz

Steve Lazarowitz is a speculative fiction writer, an editor, a father, a husband, an animal lover and a heck of a nice guy (not necessarily in that order). Steve lives in Moonah, Tasmania with his family and four giant spiny leaf insects. You can check out his work at http://www.dream-sequence.net.


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