The third book in the Star Trek: TNG Double Helix series.
Publication year: 1999
Page count: 293 + an excerpt of the next book, Quarantine.
Publisher: Pocket Books
This time the TNG crew only appears in a couple of chapters and the main character is new character: Eric Stiles. Both Spock and McCoy appear.
The story starts several years before TNG series. Ensign Eric Stiles is the leader of a Starfleet security services special squad. They’re going in planet PojjanPiraKot where the population wants all aliens out. Federation embassy is the last one to be evacuated and Stiles’ group has to get them out. Unfortunately, the who group is full of ensigns on their first mission and things go wrong. Stiles is captured and imprisoned for years. His only companion is another alien prisoner: Romulan scientist Zevon. They keep each other alive and develop a deep friendship.
Years later, the Romulan Star Empire is in an uproar. They’re attacking Federation ships and the Romulans claim they’re just renegade captains. However, the engineered virus has struck again. This time the victims are the Romulan empress and all her blood relatives. And the Romulans are accusing the Federation.
Eric Stiles is a well-drawn character. At the start, he’s a nervous ensign, determined to look good in front of his hero, Spock, who is at the embassy. Then he grows up fast and becomes even a heroic figure but without realizing himself. He carries a lot of guilt around, too.
This is a good look at the less explored side of Star Trek, the less glorified work. Unfortunately, I really wanted to read a book with the familiar TNG cast and this wasn’t it.
Both Spock and McCoy are very distinctive.