THE STAR TREK BOOK Data dump

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

the lat­est in a se­ries which be­gan with primers on sub­jects like re­li­gion, eco­nomics and psy­chol­ogy be­fore branch­ing out into fic­tional worlds, The Star Trek Book aims to pro­vide, “an easy but com­pre­hen­sive way of en­ter­ing this dense and fas­ci­nat­ing uni­verse”.

Cleanly de­signed, it’s easy to dip into, split into sections themed around top­ics such as Starfleet, al­lies and en­e­mies, and tech­nol­ogy. Th­ese are fur­ther di­vided into over­views of gen­er­ally one to four pages, bro­ken up with in­fo­graph­ics, time­lines and quo­ta­tions.

Un­like 2015’s The Sher­lock Holmes Book, it takes an “in-uni­verse” per­spec­tive, ap­proach­ing events as if they re­ally took place. The 2009 re­boot presents an ob­vi­ous chal­lenge, but one eas­ily dealt with: af­ter de­scrib­ing, say, the orig­i­nal Khan, an es­say will sim­ply move on to dis­cuss the al­ter­nate-time­line coun­ter­part.

It’s prob­a­bly best suited to fact-hun­gry teens in­tro­duced to Kirk by JJ, rather than sea­soned Trekkers. That in-uni­verse ap­proach rules out crit­i­cal anal­y­sis or be­hind-the-scenes sto­ries, and doesn’t leave much room for, well, fun. If that’s what you’re af­ter, best look else­where.

Due in Oc­to­ber: a two-vol­ume re­vised edi­tion of The Star Trek En­cy­clo­pe­dia, with 300 pages of new en­tries.

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