Saturday, June 16, 2012

Star Trek FAQ

There are a few unauthorized books on the history of Star Trek out this year. The one I'm looking forward to most is Robert Greenberger's, and not just because I contributed a little to it. But it's only fair to look at the competition as well.

Mark Clark's Star Trek FAQ: Everything Left to Know About the First Voyages of the Starship Enterprise is one of the FAQ series from the music publisher Hal Leonard. It's not, strictly speaking a FAQ (frequently asked questions list), more an encyclopedia of material related to the original Star Trek. Its 400+ pages include 46 chapters on everything from Gene Roddenberry's pre-Star Trek career to a section on famous fans. There are a lot of photos, an index, and a lengthy bibliography. Like many unauthorized nonfiction books, it's a compendium of already-known material from a variety of sources, and it doesn't work well if you're reading cover to cover. It's laying out the facts, not telling the story, so it's more for dipping into or referring to (the latter assumes you don't have Internet access, I suppose). Another volume on modern Trek has been scheduled for publication.

If you're a longtime fan there won't be much new here, but if you're a new fan and like books better than websites (Samuel Cogley would approve) you may find this useful. Just don't forget to buy Bob's Star Trek: The Complete Unauthorized History in October.


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