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Star Trek TNG: Lost Souls: Destiny Book 3
David Mack
Pocket Books, 448 pages

Star Trek TNG: Lost Souls: Destiny Book 3
David Mack
David Mack has been to shows in every Rush concert tour since 1982, and he finally met two-thirds of the band in 2007. He currently resides in New York City with his wife, Kara.

David Mack Website
ISFDB Bibliography
SF Site Review: Star Trek TNG: Mere Mortals
SF Site Review: Star Trek TNG: Gods of Night

Past Feature Reviews
A review by Michael M Jones

After decades of buildup and innumerable skirmishes, the Borg have declared all-out war upon the Federation and her allies. As thousands of Borg cubes launch a relentless, genocidal assault upon civilized space, leaving nothing but destruction in their wake, only a few Federation starships are left free to seek out a solution. But what, if anything, can stop the Borg once and for all? With billions of people already dead and numerous worlds devastated, it's up to Captain Picard of the U.S.S. Enterprise, Captain Riker of the U.S.S. Titan, and Captain Ezri Daz of the U.S.S. Avantine to join forces, muster their courage, and gamble like never before on one last hope. If they fail, the galaxy will become to the Borg.

As the captains and their stalwart crews take one last desperate stab at saving the day, they also wrestle with more personal matters. Picard, soon to be a father, worries about the universe his child will inherit. Riker wonders if his own wife, Deanna Troi, will forgive him for abandoning her and other crew members on a distant planet during a crucial moment. And Dax, new to her ship, wonders if she's making the right choices. Meanwhile, the horrifying last moments of a band of survivors from the fabled Columbia, one of Earth's earliest starships, are revealed, and in the process, a long-held secret about the Borg is revealed. Past, present, and future are woven together, action breeds reaction, and the fate of the Borg will be decided in one of Star Trek's most epic stories yet.

David Mack was handed a rather large task when he was tapped to write the Star Trek Destiny trilogy: write an epic, sweeping saga with dozens of characters, trillions of background characters, numerous starships, and one of Star Trek's most iconic, unstoppable opponents. He had to juggle a dozen different storylines set over multiple time periods, and change the franchise's landscape in some major ways. Sounds daunting, right? Well, he pulls it off. Lost Souls ties together everything set into play in the first two books, from the fate of the Columbia to the true nature of the Borg to the all-out desperate battle for survival of the Federation. He also injects a rather prominent "human" element into the storyline, as characters worry about their private and personal lives even as they tackle this impossibly-huge task. Picard, Crusher, Riker and Troi all deal with their family/child/relationship issues. Geordi LaForge wonders if he'll ever get a date, even as he (entirely unconnected to that) commiserates with Worf about their lost comrade, Data. Over on the Titan, other characters deal with their own issues. And of course, there's the intense, tragic struggle to survive played out by the last survivors of the Columbia, lost in space and time.

Lost Souls, like the rest of the Destiny trilogy, is one hell of a story. It doesn't just wrap up the trilogy, or even the past few years' worth of books. It delivers as resounding and lasting an end to the Borg as we can reasonably expect; I can only hope and pray that as far as the literary corner of the Star Trek franchise is concerned, this final solution sticks. There's a lot of wreckage to clean up in the aftermath (as we'll see in books to come), and I think the Borg are due for a long rest, if not the big dirt nap. What's most important is that as a Star Trek story, as an epic story, it works for me. It's rekindled my off-and-on interest in the setting, and made me excited about future offerings once again. I'm pretty sure Star Trek fans won't be disappointed. Yes, there's a pretty big deus ex machina at the end, but given the way this story was going, and the way the threat escalated, and the history of such things in the setting to begin with, how can anyone be surprised? It's clearly all part of the grand plan, and ultimately, it works. The usual caveats apply with this review, of course. Not a stand-alone book, not a good jumping-on point, you should read the books that precede it first, may be somewhat inaccessible to new or long-lapsed fans, beware of in-jokes. That all said, I was quite pleased by this book, and I'll be looking forward to the next books in the line, if just to see how they pick up the pieces.

Copyright © 2009 Michael M Jones

Michael M Jones enjoys an addiction to books, for which he's glad there is no cure. He lives with his very patient wife (who doesn't complain about books taking over the house... much), eight cats, and a large plaster penguin that once tasted blood and enjoyed it. A prophecy states that when Michael finishes reading everything on his list, he'll finally die. He aims to be immortal.

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