Defiance by Jason Krumbine
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
A century ago the UPA (United Planetary Alliance) were attacked by an unknown alien force which were labelled Species 4876, worlds and fleets fell to their power until the combined might of the UPA destroyed them. This is in the history books but is it what actually happened?
A century later the memory of the billions lost is just that as the UPA political structure see no threat despite knowing little of the intentions and overall goals of Species 4876 but within the fleet itself eyes are wide open and continue to search the darkness for signs of the return or their influence.
Captain Gavin Mitchell of the USS Defiance is in hot water after taking a short cut through the Veneer neutral zone during an emergency resupply mission and events at the mining colony on the world of Carlock indicate external forces are in play. Further investigations point towards the Veneer (who withdrew from the UPA a century before) and the Oxean interstellar crime syndicate but more is waiting for the crew of the Defiance to discover.
Defiance is as the author says a novel that will appeal to fans of Star Trek, the framework and characters of the story are very familiar to this long time fan of Trek but the novel is one step removed and stands by itself as a science fiction tale with some humorous elements.
I also liked the narrative structure as the events on the mission are told through the interrogation of the Captain, it would work very well in a live action television presentation. Ultimately this is a homage to Trek and that can be a good or bad thing, for me I enjoyed every reference (however slight) and that took nothing away from the story being told, look forward to the next book (Hand of God) in the series.
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