Dwellers in the Crucible by Margaret Wander Bonanno
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I am so glad I read this novel again and truth be told I now wonder if first time around all those years ago I never finished it. I say that because apart from one particular event I really couldn't remember any significant details of the story. I think at the time Dwellers in the Crucible was a novel I was not prepared for since you came to expect a certain type of story from a Star Trek paperback and this pushed the boundaries way back. Thankfully a good portion of the novel which is flashback counters much of the brutality of the main plot adding depth and understanding to the principal characters and in today's market the story wouldn't be as shocking but that was then and this is now and all the better for it.
The basic story is of a Romulan/Klingon endeavour to destabilise the Federation through the kidnapping of the "warranters of peace" from Vulcan, these individuals tend to be close blood kin to leaders of Federation worlds. Of course that doesn't seem to fit into what we consider the Federation to be although again modern stories are happy to push the conflict which will always exist even between members of a close knit organisation with so many different peoples with different needs and desires. I don't really want to go into any more detail, the novel is worth reading and maybe I was just being too sensitive as a younger Trek fan but again I was still disturbed reading the story but as mentioned the balance to that callous and calculating cruelty revealed two very interesting young characters one from Earth and one from Vulcan and a friendship could have the potential to equal that of another more familiar pairing within Trek.
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