The Murdered Sun
The Murdered Sun by Christie Golden
Having recently read John Jackson Miller’s Star Trek: The Next Generation novel Takedown, I decided to further my plunge into Trek with another book. It worked well with John, so I picked another Star Wars author that I liked. In this case it was Christie Golden with her Star Trek: Voyager novel The Murdered Sun.
Now I’ve never watched Star Trek: Voyager, so I’m unfamiliar with the characters. On the other hand, this is only the second Star Trek novel I’ve ever ready, so I’m not sure which is more significant. However, as a long time Star Wars reader, Christie did a great job writing the story in a way that new readers like myself could still enjoy it. The characters are well developed and slowly introduced so it’s easy enough to get grasp on the cast. There’s also some background on what the crew of the Voyager is up to and what’s going on with them. As an old school Trek fan, this story had the right amount of trappings to tap into my nostalgia and interest in the Trek universe. It’s also just a fun sci-fi story mixing together alien species, cultures, technologies into an intriguing plot.
That said, The Murdered Sun is a lot like an elaborate multi-part television episode. The crew of the Voyager discovers an anomaly that they decide to investigate. It leads them to two alien factions who are at war, and Voyager gets caught in the middle. The aliens are interesting and the story does a great job of developing them. It takes the time to explore what they’re like, how their history has affected them, and the ties they develop with the crew of the Voyager. They get intertwined into the plot and the action very craftily without any info dumps. Furthermore, I really liked how the crew of the Voyager played out in the story.
They’re led by Captain Janeway who is very much her own character. She doesn’t fall into the same molds as Kirk and Picard. In turn, she’s backed by a colorful crew, yet only two of them really stand out in this novel. Both Chakotay and Tom Paris get some excellent character building. Each of them form ties with the first alien species they encounter. Chakotay finds common ground with the way their beliefs are similar to his. Tom Paris alternatively finds discord with how snakelike they appear, but in training them to fly, forms a bond with them that transcends physical barriers. Each character story was very enjoyable.
While it might not be a sci-fi epic, The Murdered Sun is a fun sci-fi adventure. Whether you’re a Voyager fan or a Star Wars fan looking to diversify your fandom, this book is worth checking out. I give it a four out of five metal bikinis.