Carry On Star Trek
Release Date: OUT NOW!
348 pages | Hardback/ ebook Author: Steven Erikson Publisher: Tor
Some books are worth checking out for curiosity value alone. Chew on this one: Steven Erikson, he of doorstop- sized, multi- volume fantasy sagas fame, has written a Star Trek spoof. Don’t pretend that you’re not intrigued.
The conceit is simple. When Earth makes the leap into deep space exploration far too early ( thanks to aliens crash- landing on Earth) young Hadrian Sawback – who’s been brought up on Star Trek – becomes a captain, modelling himself on Captain Kirk. He takes command of the starship Willful Child and has a series of episodic and oddly familiar adventures involving fake rocks on planets that all look like Northern California.
While there are some fun concepts ( especially the way the book’s version of the Borg are defeated), amusing secondary characters and snappy one- liners here, Erikson is no Douglas Adams. Think more Spaceballs, with such blunt satire as a sword- wielding officer called Zulu, Hadrian solving the Mishmashi test at the academy and wink- at- the- camera dialogue like, “I can feel an episode coming on.”
Erikson also strangles the life out of running gags until you’re begging, “Please! Don’t mention the ripped shirt again!” And yes, okay, Hadrian’s libido may be Kirk- inspired lampoonery, but after a while he’s just a tediously sexist buffoon.
If Willful Child was self- published fanfic you’d be reasonably amused. But from a major author it feels a little embarrassing. Dave Golder
In the early days of The Next Generation, Erikson submitted a script featuring the “doomsday machine” from TOS.