The Cry of the Onlies by Judy Klass
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
The Cry of the Onlies incorporates elements from the original series episodes "Miri" and "Requiem for Methuselah" and considering how I have said in the past I like novels which expand upon the series I wonder why this one didn't quite shine as bright in my eyes.
The core story is a rather bleak look at a failing of the Federation in their support of a corrupt and despotic regime on the planet Broaco VI driven by the galaxies need for a medicinal raw material harvested from this world's forests. The Romulans and Klingons are sniffing around as well after the regime was toppled during a coup and the new ruling council have little interest in dealing with the "corrupt" Federation. The Enterprise is sent to open negotiations with the council and try to prevent the influence of a Klingon/Romulan pact as well as avert an intersystem war with Broaco VIII a world still supported by the Federation. To complicate matters a Starfleet craft equipped with a new cloaking device designed by Flint was stolen by some of the "youngsters" from Miri's world and has gone on a rampage destroying ships whenever it comes across them. Kirk is forced to contend with the scepticism of the Broaco VI council, the renegade ship, placating the ruling body of Broaco VIII and the notion that there is something about Flint he does not like but can understand why...
In many ways the story reflects circumstances of our world where maybe well meaning or indifferent organisations have supported governments with aid without looking too closely what they do with it as long as resources continue to flow back to the "enlightened" world. This part of the story is pure Star Trek and works well but unfortunately gets tied up a little too quickly and is diluted by the "Flint" and "Onlies" plot lines. It's by no means a weak Star Trek novel but I wonder if Judy had concentrated totally on Broaco VI and the darker side of vested interests I would have enjoyed the novel more but than again the market for Trek novels was different back then compared to now.
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