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29 of 31 found the following review helpful:
VOY Relaunch Keeps Getting BetterJun 03, 2011
By Matthias Russell
I was greatly anticipating this book and was not let down. Children of the Storm was probably my favorite release from the past year. Beyer had a hard job to do and executed it well.
The story has an antagonist that is extremely powerful and had little foundation laid for it. Often times, ultra-powerful antagonists are poorly done as they end up being silly or defeated using techno-magic. But the Children were well developed into a very original and intriguing species and the situation was handled in a very Trek way. The resolution was the type that I expect from trek and involved a perfect balance of ingenuity and technology without the techno-babble.
Another area where Beyer could have failed in this book was relying on original, off screen characters for ½ - 2/3 of the book. Despite much of the story centering on new characters I was able to get into the plot and personalities and enjoy the experience. The returning VOY characters were also well done and showed Beyer well understands the characters and appears to know the directions we want the tv characters to take. At no point in the book did I think, "He wouldn't do that!"
The uniqueness of Full Circle Voyager to me is that it is a fleet with many, many characters. With 9 ships and 9 command staffs, it is easy to get overwhelmed, forget what is happening to each crew, and not get emotionally attached to anyone. This didn't happen to me. I stayed hooked throughout the read and never once got lost. I totally didn't expect what happened to the Demeter or Guirinal; they were jaw-dropping moments.
I expected to be ready for another author to take a crack at this but Beyer has kept the momentum going and each of her books keep getting better. I am more hooked on VOY than ever and look forward to the next installment.
31 of 35 found the following review helpful:
Better Than Some Would Have You Believe...Apr 01, 2009
By J. Wright
Voyager fans have had a rocky few years. The first 4 Relaunch books were less than fantastic IMO, but at least we had something. Then 5 years without any major post-series action. Of course we had Tuvok in the extremely well written Titan series. There were cameos by multiple crew members in other titles. And we had the death of a beloved character in the shocking if moving 'Before Dishonor' by Peter David; a Next Generation title that starred Janeway & Seven. Seven also saw quite a bit of development in the exciting Destiny trilogy by David Mack.
But now we have 'Full Circle' and Voyager hasn't been this good in ages. The author, Kirsten Beyer previously wrote the excellent middle volume in the Voyager "String Theory" trilogy. She got the characters right then, and she's perfected them beyond my hopes in this new integral installment. Those who feel that the loss of 1 character from the ensemble is too much to bear may understandably want to skip this one, but if they choose to do so they are missing out on quite a ride - and easily the best post-series Voyager story yet. Those that felt that the first 4 Relaunch titles by Christie Golden were missing something need to give this one a shot! The characters have rarely been this well written. The story has never been this moving. The series feels reinvigorated. And I for one am very happy with what is happening in the post-Voyager landscape.
20 of 23 found the following review helpful:
Two books in one: A novel and a prologueApr 07, 2009
Warning: You probably want to forgo FULL CIRCLE until you've read BEFORE DISHONOR and all of the STAR TREK: DESTINY trilogy. If you plan to do those things, don't read past the next paragraph. (FWIW, you can get by without having read any earlier Voyager novels, but you must have watched the show.)
The first 291 pages of FULL CIRCLE comprise a novel detailing the kidnapping of B'Elanna Torres and Tom Paris' daughter Miral from a Klingon monastery, the unlikely but heroic attempt to locate and rescue Miral (with the involvement of Admiral Janeway, Captain Chakotay, and Voyager), and an ending that is not as happy as it could be. This is a typical Trek novel, with its share of thrills, humor, defiance of orders and good sense, and revelations about the history of and threats to the future of the Klingon people.
As for the second half of the book ... To come "full circle" is to return to where you started, and you can guess what that means for Voyager and its crew. But don't expect anything so dramatic to happen in FULL CIRCLE; the second half of the book only prepares the way for the next Voyager novel, UNWORTHY. Most of this section consists of the history of Voyager during the year or so between Janeway's death and the beginning of Voyager's new journey. This is the "catch up" section of the book, relating what happened to the ship and its crew to the events in the larger Trek universe. I found this section confusing and much less satisfying than the initial novel. This was partly because I hadn't read the other novels, but more because it was poorly narrated, with little context or motivation for each of the historical snippets that were presented. It was freely interspersed with title pages bearing dates like "May 2381", but the date has no meaning unless you happen to be good at constructing chronologies in your head. I would have been helped much more by something like "Then, on our next mission, around the same time that the Enterprise was being attacked by a massive space wedgie in the Whosit system, ..."
In sum, FULL CIRCLE exists mainly to prepare readers for Voyager's new mission, which begins in UNWORTHY. I suspect that the entertaining novel that occupies the first half of the book is there mainly to make the second half of the book palatable to readers like me, who don't keep up with all the latest Trek happenings. In any event, I recommend reading BEFORE DISHONOR and the DESTINY series before turning to FULL CIRCLE.
1. I've never seen "imperiously" used so many times in a single book.
2. Why does Starfleet have to reserve spots in the admiralty for the biggest jerks in the galaxy?
3. There is no way to know from brief inspection of FULL CIRCLE that readers should have read other novels first. I would really have liked a notice saying that reading X, Y, and Z first would be a good idea. In the Star Wars universe each book has a little timeline in the front that gives you some idea where this book fits in relative to others. Surely, the Trek gods can do at least that much, right?
31 of 38 found the following review helpful:
This is gonna be a controversial oneMar 29, 2009
Backstory for anyone missing it: in 2007's Before Dishonor, Kathryn Janeway was killed. Well, actually, she's off having fun with the Q, but editorially, it's been made clear that she won't be coming back as a mortal for at least the foreseeable future (next couple years). Before that, Tuvok was moved as a regular character to the Titan series, begun in Taking Wing in 2005. And then last year, the Destiny trilogy did a huge Borg invasion that changed everything for the Federation, and Voyager was involved in that too.
So, in the 5 years of real time and 3 years of in-universe time since the last Voyager novel, some serious things have changed. These things are clearly not everyone's cup of tea (especially Janeway's death), and so I'm sure this book is going to get a ton of 1-star reviews based on that alone.
But that's unworthy of this magnificent, graceful epic. It gives us one last adventure of everyone from the show together again in the first half, then shows us what happens over the next three years as they drift apart, react to Janeway's death, change as people in startling but truly human ways, and then all end up at the end......well, that would spoil it. But suffice it to say "Full Circle" is an excellent title.
And suffice it also to say that anyone complaining about "only a few" characters being left apparently failed to read the novel. Going forward, aside from Janeway and Tuvok, every major Voyager character that made it back to the Alpha Quadrant has a huge role and a fascinating ongoing character arc. This book has one of the most surprising and layered endings of any Trek book you'll read, and it does everyone justice (including Janeway and Tuvok, though they are departed). I can't imagine there'd be a Voyager fan that didn't find something to like here.
If Janeway's death is a dealbreaker, well then this probably isn't for you. If a 560 page emotional journey that hits some seriously dark places before coming back to the light seems too intense for a Star Trek book, then maybe this isn't for you. But if you're on the fence at all, I would seriously recommend giving this a try. This is a book about people, flawed but powerful people, in a winding tale that shows more of what that really means than the show ever did.
What I mean is, for my money, it's one of the best Trek novels ever published, and easily the best Voyager novel ever published, even with Janeway dying. And while I see many totally valid reasons you could have for disagreeing, I hope that you don't just think "WELL THAT SOUNDS LAME" and give this a pass. There's much more to Full Circle than you expect.
23 of 28 found the following review helpful:
An exhilarating, delicious, fan awaited treatMar 28, 2009
By Sean Flaherty
First of all I must say how shameful it has been 5 years since Pocket Books has released any Voyager re-launch novels from "Enemy of my Enemy" but have continuously focused on Titan, TNG, DS9, New Frontier which aren't even nearly as good as Voyager. I must say though Beyer does a great job at finishing up Golden's ideas and she greatly improves upon it. This is the re-launch novel that Voyager fans have REALLY been waiting for. I must say though how disappointed I was with the death of Janeway (why not kill off Picard, Sisko or Dr. McCoy?) Those characters are much older, and should be let go before Janeway. I didn't like the idea of Peter David killing her off in a TNG relaunch novel of "Before Dishonor". But Beyer certainly does not skip a beat on the thrills and going into details with her death (with some surprising romances- that fans have craved for years). Beyer did a great job at restoring Voyager back to it's roots and setting if off again in their home turf at the end of the novel. But I do not like the fact that Captain Eden is in command, when hardly any VOY crew members are left onboard except for Kim and Paris. Also B'lanna cheating death? That is so unlike her- I am sure her closets friends would help her out instead she runs around the quadrant in secrecy. Beyer does a great job at showing Voyager's role in the Desinty series (with tragic consequences- to some of the new characters in the relaunch). I hope Chakotay comes back in command- that is really his ship and Janeways. I believe the height of the show was with her and him in Command. I don't believe Eden will live up to that height. I also believe that the show isn't really much of a relaunch if they kill off the main characters and do little about the old ones. Overall Beyer made a masterpiece. I hope that Unworthy is certainly just as good- this has to be one of Voyager's best novels, if not the best.
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