LEONARD

He lived long and pros­pered

SFX: The Sci-Fi and Fantasy Magazine - - Reviews -

re­leased OUT NOW! 275 pages | Hard­back/ ebook

Au­thors Wil­liam Shat­ner, David Fisher

Pub­lisher Sidg­wick & Jack­son

Leonard Ni­moy’s pass­ing last Fe­bru­ary rocked count­less thou­sands who’d never met him. How much more af­fect­ing must it have been for some­one who knew him for decades? This trib­ute by his Star Trek co- star ( sub­ti­tle: My Fifty- Year Friend­ship With A Re­mark­able Man) pro­vides us with a lit­tle in­sight.

That sub­ti­tle isn’t en­tirely ac­cu­rate, mind. Though the two men worked side by side for three sea­sons, they didn’t ini­tially be­come close – partly be­cause the Method- trained Ni­moy tended to stay in char­ac­ter rather than fool around be­tween takes; partly be­cause of a cou­ple of in­ci­dents where the two locked horns. It wasn’t un­til 1975, when Shat­ner started at­tend­ing con­ven­tions, that a mean­ing­ful friend­ship be­gan to grow – one ce­mented in the ’ 90s when Shat­ner lost his then wife to al­co­holism, and was able to lean on Ni­moy ( him­self an al­co­holic for decades) for emo­tional sup­port.

It’s dif­fi­cult to know quite who is the ideal au­di­ence for Leonard. The peo­ple most likely to be in­ter­ested – Trekkers – will find many of the anec­dotes re­counted here fa­mil­iar from pre­vi­ous books. They may also be frus­trated by some sloppy er­rors – Shat­ner thinks his Trek pi­lot was shot in black and white, that Chekov fea­tured in the first sea­son, and that Ni­moy only fea­tured in Fringe as a voice – which re­ally should have been caught by his co- writer.

Oc­ca­sional flashes of Shat­ner’s lightly sar­donic wit keep you read­ing, though. And the deep re­spect with which he dis­cusses his for­mer crew­mate is touch­ing – as is his be­wil­der­ment and sad­ness that the two fell out be­fore Ni­moy’s death. There’s no doubt this is a sin­cere at­tempt to hon­our his mem­ory. For fans, how­ever, one won­ders if a more fit­ting way to do so might be to do­nate the cover price to a heart dis­ease char­ity. Ian Ber­ri­man

Flashes of Shat­ner’s wit keep you read­ing

At con­ven­tions, Ni­moy had one per­sis­tent rider de­mand: a pint of coffee- flavoured Häa­gen- Dazs ice cream.

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