The Final Nexus by Gene DeWeese
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
The Final Nexus is the sequel to the novel Chain Of Attack and the mysterious "gate" system the Enterprise investigated in the original novel has revealed itself once again. The USS Cochise has run into one and unlike before members of the crew are gripped with an almost uncontrollable paranoia and terror. A call to Starfleet results in the Enterprise warping to the Cochise only to find it's Captain ready to fight anything and anyone, when the immediate situation is resolved further gates begin to appear across the galaxy and in many cases anyone who comes close is gripped by paranoia and soon death and destruction begins to spread.
In this novel Gene expands upon the gate system adding a lot more detail which was missing from the original novel which concentrated on the effects of the gates on the immediate area. The Final Nexus has the gate system at the heart of the story, it's creation and manipulation be a race so long ago and the consequences of such a universe spanning construct when control waived. Ultimately this is a story about individual integrity and commitment framed by a threat which the crew could wipe out life everywhere. Commander Ansfield was a good character having joined Starfleet when she was much older than the "average" cadet although it did bother me she rarely address Captain Kirk as Captain and Kremastor showed us an alien who shared the core beliefs of what makes the core characters of Trek so appealing.
The Final Nexus is a good accompaniment to Chain of Attack and wraps the central theme of the two stories up with a satisfying bow, maybe too neat a bow but the tv series was also guilty of that:)
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