September 7th, 2010 by Weber
Today’s the 7th, so I can officially unleash my review. Read on. Contest details at the bottom.
Night of the Living Trekkies is a fluffy book, like popcorn or cotton candy, or a tribble, I suppose. There are no real surprises here. It is good, old-fashioned comfort reading.
The story has the rhythm of any modern zombie film, keeps all the necessary beats. But instead of a rag-tag group of strangers desperate to save their individual skins, this is a rag-tag group of sci-fi geeks applying the Star Trek philosophy of “a better world though friendly cooperation” to their survival. And it works, for the most part. There are also a handful of the usual narrative standards: Reluctant Hero Rises to his Destiny, Saves His Friends, Defeats the Enemy and Gets The Girl. We know they’re going to get out of this; it’s just a matter of how.
The guys who wrote Night of the Living Trekkies certainly did their homework. Trek references and inside jokes abound, especially in the first seventy-or-so pages of set-up. And keeping with Star Trek’s overall target audience, NotLT seems to have been penned for a PG-13 crowd. The zombie action is light and, keeping with the property’s sci-fi trappings, the weapons of choice tend toward Tasers and blades. Guns are used, though sparingly.
While the story skates to the beat and rhythm of a zombie movie, the overall story traces a parabola consistent with any of the Star Trek shows and/or films and nearly all the right people are alive by the end. The chapters are short, the action is fast, the writing is serviceable — all work to keep the pages flipping. (I finished it in about five hours and I’m a slow reader.) The characters are generally likable, even the Jerk who eventually devolves into The Bad Guy. But even so, he is not despicable. There is a wide line between being an ass and being evil, and in this book, that line never gets crossed.
Night of the Living Trekkies has plenty of enemies in it, but no real Villain, which may be this tale’s missing ingredient. The zombies have no motive other than to consume and infect. They are simply the Enemy. The Jerk who turns into the Bad Guy does so mainly because he is infected and taken over by the thing creating the zombies. The one guy who might serve as a Villain is explained too late for him to have been effective and a lot of air is let out of his balloon when it’s realized he’s not in control of his own actions, anyway.
The story wraps up nice & tidy, all loose ends cut or cauterized, with the Hero and his pals facing a Bright Though Uncertain Future. They are us and we are them. The same could be said for the zombies. But this is, after all, a Star Trek story.
So — time to apply my patented evaluation device, ““The Three Best Things Anybody Can Ever Say About Any Book”:
Was it worthy of the time I spent reading it? — Oddly, yes. Like I said, the pages turned quickly and I was entertained for pretty much the entire story.
Would I pay full cover price, including applicable sales taxes? — For myself, no. If I was buying it as a gift, sure.
Would I give this book as a gift? — Yes.
CONTEST! WIN A FREE BOOK AND POSTER! TWO LUCKY WINNERS!
Books are books and should be given freely. Share a book and share yourself.
Or something like that.
So, rather than make my faithful readers do anything untoward, I figure to just give the book/poster combos to the first two who comment on this post.
Don’t put your address in the comments! I’ll get back to you via email and work out how to get you the goods.
Good luck and thanks for reading.