Well, dear reader, I had intended to have finished The Mathematics of Love by today so that we could have a Valentines themed post, but it became quite apparent that that I wasn’t nearly far enough through it. So, to make sure that you got at least one blogly Valentine present, I whipped through another Star Trek book for you last night. Happy V day.
I have read a number of these books now, so I feel qualified to say that this is not a great one. Maybe it suffers from coming hot on the heels of the previous story which was all about a psychopathic killer on the loose and weird things happening with the wormhole, but somehow this story about a psychopathic killer on the loose and weird things happening near the wormhole fell a bit flat.
The premise of the book is that Quark, the dodgy Ferengi, has invited all of the villains in space to take part in a giant poker tournament. One of them turns out to be a psychopathic killer who has to be hunted down. In parallel to this, DS9 (as we call it) is being hit by subspace waves that are threatening to shake it apart, so Sisko and his crew have to work out what is causing it before they explode and before the Cardassians and Bajorans, who have decided the subspace waves are a weapon, declare war. Yet, somehow, the book didn’t have the tension of the last book. Maybe there were supposed to me humourous moments in the poker game, but there weren’t really. It just didn’t work for me.
This book does meet all the conventions that I’ve noted so far though:
- a death or series of deaths early on
- ending with the Cardassians about to blow everyone up before being saved in the nick of time
- somebody having to travel in time or space or into another dimension to solve it
- O’Brien swearing at the dodgy engineering a lot
- Major Kira being generally angry
- Sisko’s son making bad choices
- Sisko being a bit macho and in control while trying to reason with the Cardassians
- Everyone learning some moral lesson
So, in that respect you get what you expect, but somehow, for me, it just felt a bit paint by numbers. And there was very little love story that I could weave in to a V day post either. Foiled.