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Review of The Romulan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing
Reviewer Rating: Star Wars RatingStar Wars RatingStar Wars RatingStar Wars RatingStar Wars Rating (3)
Avg User Rating: Star Wars RatingStar Wars RatingStar Wars RatingStar Wars RatingStar Wars Rating (3)
Published Date: October 20, 2009
ISBN: 143910798X
March 25, 2017
After two books slowly setting the stage for a major set piece in the Star Trek Universe, the Romulan War that helped herald in the Federation, I was excited to get to Beneath the Raptorís Wing. The setup had been so well done and carried out by the same writer as the last two books, I was certain this would continue the trend.

While I wasnít totally let down, sadly this book also didnít live up to my expectations. Maybe I was expecting too much or had built it up in my head, but for whatever reason my feeling after reading this book was ďThat was ok I guessĒ.

There are still plenty of things this book gets right. The book really builds a sense of foreboding and Earth is definitely made into the underdog. And who doesnít like a good underdog? The pacing is pretty good throughout, the action scenes are handled as masterfully as they have been in the previous two books, and the politics are well done, which isnít always an easy feat. Also, I like the bad guy. He is a definite foe to our heroes, but doesnít come off as the pure evil, black hat that stories often go with. Also, since itís a character from one of the episodes, I can picture him clearly in my head, which I always appreciate.

If that was the whole book, it would have been five stars for me. Sadly, it wasnít.

We continue with the Trip story line that I remain not crazy about. I can see what Martin is doing, trying to add another dimension to the war and using him as a window into the Romulans, but it still feels disjointed. I could just never bring myself to care about what was happening to him. And the worst part is, it is certain this plot line will continue in books going forward.

Then you have Mayweather. I hate what Martin did with the character. His attitude towards Archer is wildly out of character from what we saw on the show, and itís not needed. Again, I realize this is a window into the rest of Starfleet, but Martin could have found a better way of doing that without selling out the character. I cringed every time Mayweather showed up.

Also, the whole ďtele-controlĒ device is a bit to push button for me. I mean, I know Star Trek has never been about science, but you have all these advance cultures and this is the first time anyone has tried to do this? On top of that, even after its happened dozens of times still characters are still fooled by it even when they have knowledge of previous incidents. It makes a lot of otherwise smart characters seem kinda dumb.

Again, this isnít a bad book. On pacing and overall plot (leaving aside the Trip stuff) itís good. But this book sells out just one too many characters for me to love it.
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