Date: 24 Jun 2020 11:16 Title: Part Seven: The Rabbit Hole - 3
Lots of very nice turns of phrase. A hint of Douglas Adams vivid use of metaphor - especially the bit about the woodchipper.
Since I know where this story is heading, the meaning of the various states of transition and waves of possibility make sense - definitely a touch of Sliders here.
And what better cliffhanger to end a novel on than encountering your own ship piloted by a ghost?
Author's Response: I never quite expected someone to read these books out of order but it's really interesting to get that perspective and I'm glad that you were still interested enough in the whole "how did we get here" to come back to this novel and make your way through it as well. Really appreciate these reviews!
Date: 23 Jun 2020 05:57 Title: Part Seven: The Rabbit Hole - 2
I have no doubt both Michael and Star are enjoying Bensu taking the helm - for different reasons.
Jarik is proving to be quite annoying. I'm sure he'll turn out to be useful later.
Nice, very Star Trekish moment passing out of normal space and the reveal with Admiral Owen.
Definitely a page turner.
Author's Response: Thanks. Page turner is one of my favorite compliments. It means the reader is highly engaged with the story and/or the characters. That's what most writers aim for, of course. I always loved the absurdity of the barkeeper taking the helm of a starship while all those professional and highly trained Starfleet officers watch on.
Date: 22 Jun 2020 18:55 Title: Part Seven: The Rabbit Hole - 1
I love a clever turn of phrase and "previously deceased father" ranks pretty close to the top.
Very thick chapter - nicely sums up most of the previous action and pulls together the plot points.
I get along great with my dad - but I wouldn't want him on my starship... This is going to be loads of fun...
Author's Response: Working with your father used to be a common thing, I'm sure, but I think these days, most people would rather avoid it. Makes it so much more difficult if you harbor deep-seated resentments. Michael has some serious daddy issues which are an ongoing theme within the series.
Date: 21 Jun 2020 23:02 Title: Part Six: Breakdown - 7
Nice move on Culsten's part - good bluff. Makes it much more interesting that Garla eventually joins the group.
Author's Response: Which hopefully is not something that seems like a likely development at this stage.
Date: 21 Jun 2020 22:38 Title: Part Six: Breakdown - 6
Owens is a little impulsive tipping his hand that he knows about the Omega molecule. He might be better served by keepign that under his hat.
But family is family and betrayal is hard to get over.
Author's Response: The man is seeing red, what can I say? Your absolutely right, he should have just kept his mouth shut, at least until the crisis is over. Oh well, he's only human.
Date: 21 Jun 2020 22:32 Title: Part Six: Breakdown - 6
There's a passage that's pretty much unreadable because of the black questionmarks. I don't know why this software does that, but the only way to get rid of them is to delete the word they're in and retype it. It's the paragraph that begins "And who could say about Jarik..." The passage looks to me like: "...youthful na?vet? had..." Except the question marks have black diamonds around them.
Author's Response: Yeah, this is pretty annoying. I've only recently realized that this is happening again. I've already gone through reposting all my stories here once before when this was happening, so not super keen to go through that again. It's not quite as bad as before so maybe I'll do it for some of the chapters that are affected.
Date: 21 Jun 2020 01:41 Title: Part Six: Breakdown - 5
And a desparate attempt at escape with no bodies on the deck... yet...
I like Tazla's (frustrated) desire to be last boots on Piquis.
And quite enjoying the unconventional tactics of the SMT team.
Author's Response: Yeah, the SMTs are hopefully providing a good dose of fun action to this. And you gotta commend Star for the non-lethal approach which I'm sure is much harder to pull off than the alternative.
Date: 21 Jun 2020 00:43 Title: Part Six: Breakdown - 4
It appears we are both on the trail of a massive environmental disaster - mine entirely natural, yours manmade. Oh that nasty Omega molecule... clicky aliens... yeah, this is starting to get fun..
Author's Response: Juggling a lot of balls here. Good thing this story is spread out over three books. Very curious to find out more about what disaster we've got developing in your story.
Date: 21 Jun 2020 00:31 Title: Part Six: Breakdown - 3
Several good Star Trek tropes in this chapter - "those with best intentions," "Segregation is a step back," and the Trek classic "humans have a saying for everything."
Fun! Thanks!! rbs
Author's Response: Gots to have tropes, it's what puts the Trek into Star Trek. I suppose you don't want to overdue it. As for the social commentary, that's certainly part of the theme for this story and QD.
Date: 20 Jun 2020 23:27 Title: Part Six: Breakdown - 2
Before reading a long story, I like to sample a chapter between the middle and the end - which gives me a pretty good read on whether I will enjoy the series. Somtimes they start slow.
I really liked this chapter - lucked into it - it has all sorts of things I like. Dad back fromthe dead, big moral quagmire, fast action, a vulcan and a half-vulcan behaving very differently. And someone named Daystrom..
Author's Response: That's an interesting approach to reading a story but I can certainly respect that. And I'm glad you enjoyed what you've read here.
Date: 18 Jun 2020 03:08 Title: Part Five: Lazarus - 8
Good call on Owen's part. We learned long ago that torture doesn't get the truth. But it seems to be a lesson we have to learn again and again.
It's starting to sound like our clicky friend is part of a collective intelligence and as an individual may barely have enough intelligence to operate. And I thoroughly agree with your sentiment about too many aliens wiser or smarter than humans.
I also appreciate that you addressed the warp 5 speed limit - though our solutions vary...
Author's Response: I don't know if the Warp 5 speed limit issue was ever resolved in canon and I'm pretty sure was mostly ignored by DS9 and certainly Voyager where the ship would have presumably traveled at high warp most of the time to get back to Federation space. The assumption for Star Eagle is that newer warp drive systems eventually addressed this issue.
Date: 18 Jun 2020 02:48 Title: Part Five: Lazarus - 7
I agree with Nora. When people behave that far out of norm in a science fiction story there's often something literally chewing on them... like a worm or a baby alien...
Nice cliffhanger! Thanks! rbs
Author's Response: I don't think I'll spoil the story by admitting that there is most definitely no baby alien involved here. I think Culsten is just dealing with a lot, especially after having just killed a man in self-defense. Not an excuse to go off on Hopkins and Nora like that, but no doubt a contributing factor.
Date: 16 Jun 2020 22:13 Title: Part Five: Lazarus - 6
I'm enjoying the tension between the captains. Clearly Donnars would prefer to just give orders in this situation - but does not have authority to.
Author's Response: Tension abound, right? I'm not usually a huge fan of antagonistic starship captains (although I've written my share of them) because it is such a common cliche in Trek and other places when you have your hero captain/character meet an external comparable character. I like it here because of the added dimension of their history and relationship and, of course, a few other things inherent to this story that we'll discover later on.
Date: 16 Jun 2020 18:02 Title: Part Five: Lazarus - 5
Good discussion of consideration about raising people's hopes. This is a good sample of the medical drama a-la House. Right down to the grumpy, cantankerous doctor..
Author's Response: House is tight. Well, I can't claim to be a big fan or anything, but of the few episodes I've seen, I did like the character quite a bit, not to mention the outstanding actor portraying him. And who doesn't like a bit of medical drama? Certainly something I was trying to do in this story. Glad it worked.
Date: 16 Jun 2020 10:13 Title: Part Five: Lazarus - 4
Good action segment. It illustrates Garla's fighting and command abilities.
Culsten will end up a badass if he keeps training with her.
Author's Response: Yes, I really wanted Garla to be a badass, which is a theme that we'll see repeated. Culsten could certainly learn a few things from her. But then again, so could she from him.
Date: 16 Jun 2020 09:55 Title: Part Three: A House Divided - 10
I really like tight, focused segments like this one. This one manages to convey a lot of story information very succinctly.
I also like the chapter/part layout of this story. It makes it easy for me to select a group of segments to read and orient into that part of the story - also easy to remember where things are when I feel a need to go back and catch up on clues I might have missed.
Author's Response: Thanks. I tend to try and section my stories into relevant parts, unfortunately it doesn't always quite work the way I'd like it to. One of my (many) frustrations with the QD trilogy is that I was only able to use this format in the first book while the other two have mostly straight-forward chapters. If nothing else it damages the consistency I like to strive for.
Date: 16 Jun 2020 09:09 Title: Part Five: Lazarus - 3
Hide was the correct option for Star... nice description of the ships inolved and their activities.
Also quite enjoying the mysterious Bensu and his odd relationship with Xylion. Always fun to have characters show up from other galaxies..
Author's Response: Bensu certainly is an odd fellow, isn't he? I do like writing him since he is so very different to anyone else in this story and has this big mystery surrounding him.
Date: 15 Jun 2020 18:52 Title: Part Four: Charybdis - 8
Nice explanation about the source of the virus. Good character development with Lif, Star and Katanga. The asteroid sequence was described in clear detail which made it very easy to picture - very cinematic.
Author's Response: Thanks for the comment, glad you enjoy the story and the characters.
Date: 11 Jun 2020 18:52 Title: Part Four: Charybdis - 5
Unapologetically analagous... The writing has very much of an original series feel to it - clear moral lines. Not as much of the gray areas as STNG used, much less the deliberate blurring of morality used in ST Enterprise.
Author's Response: That's an interesting comment since I do like gray areas and ambiguous morality. I think some of that will become more noticeable in later stories. Much of the morality in my stories is of course based on the characters as they perceive it. People like Michael Owens, DeMara Deen and Elijah Katanga have very high ethical and moral standards while others like Tazla Star or Nora Laas may see the universe a little differently.
Date: 11 Jun 2020 18:28 Title: Part Four: Charybdis - 3
Looks like a spellchecker chew: the paragraph that starts "Also present where four..." third word should be "were".
Great line "Reality bending nightmares are just another Tuesday..."
Very vivid description of the subspace realm - cinematic. I was able to easily picture it in my mind - especially the wake people were leaving.
Author's Response: That's great to hear. I always strife for simplicity in my writing and attempt to evoke clear images in the reader's mind or at least not to confuse matters too much. I also like fast-paced action using as few words as possible without losing impact. A cinematic feel is certainly something I try to go for.