A Time to Love
A century ago the long-running conflict between two alien civilizations ended when both of them colonised the same distant planet, becoming instead a shining example of inter-species cooperation and coexistence. Now an investigation headed by Kyle Riker -- estranged father of Commander William Riker -- has revealed how fragile their hard-won paradise is.
Reviewed on 31st January 2010
Book five in this series is an odd fish. I'm not quite sure how to characterize it. The set up seems to be a bit of a murder mystery story on an alien planet known for being the one place where two enemy species are able to live in peace.
The problem arises when the mystery fails to generate any clues. The story merely follows the characters travelling around doing very little while the situation worsens. A true mystery story would have been littered with hints as to what Kyle Riker was up to, but there are absolutely none. It just leaves me feeling uninspired as a reader.
The alien creations themselves are far from novel - two races who hate each other living on one planet is an idea that I feel Trek has done to death and it's a bit cheap not to come up with something more. The main characters seem awkward too and slightly unreal - only Crusher seems to have any real depth to her in this one, where to my mind this should be a Riker book. Maybe this will improve in book two though.
I'm torn between whether the use of Riker's father is a cute tying up of an old story or whether it's simply another coincidence too far, but I suppose I will have to wait until the second part before deciding once I actually know what the plot is.