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Shell Game [Mass Market Paperback]

Melissa Crandall
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Feb. 1 1993 Star Trek (Numbered Paperback) (Book 63)
While the crew of the U.S.S. Enterprise explores a Romulan space station adrift within Federation borders, a Romulan warship arrives, and the Romulan commander accuses Kirk of treachery.

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From the Publisher

While on a routine mission to retrieve a research drone for recycling, the U.S.S. EnterpriseTM encounters a Romulan space station adrift within Federation borders. Exploring the lifeless station, the crew finds ghostly apparitions flitting at the edges of sight.

Soon the U.S.S. Enterprise is also inexplicably without power. Captain Kirk and his crew must now solve the mystery of the strange apparitions before the Starship suffers the station's fate.

The situation becomes desperate when a Romulan warship arrives looking for the station, and the Romulan Commander accuses the Federation of treachery. Before Captain Kirk can save the Starship Enterprise from complete destruction, he must avoid becoming drawn into a deadly shell game, a game that will leave no winners and no survivors.


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THE CREW OF THE St. Brendan cautiously followed Captain Loughran over the railing and onto the derelict vessel they had discovered. Read the first page
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Most helpful customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Tolerably good plot. July 13 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Somewhat poor execution.
Set in the period, as near as I can tell, between "Star Trek I: The Motion Picture" and "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan" (based on the fact that the apparently original Enterprise is intact, and Chekov is security chief rather than navigator), the plot of this story is something of a cross between the original series episode "The Immunity Syndrome", in which the Enterprise encounters a giant, energy-eating space amoeba, and the pilot episode of "Star Trek: The Next Generation", in which Picard and crew meet and witness the birth of alien creatures at Farpoint Station. As such, it is pretty standard "Trek" fare, and the characterizations are handled pretty well, but the actual writing itself (and its concommitant editing) gets a bit sloppy at times; never mind the use of "suppose" instead of "supposed" (as in "what's that suppose to mean"); that's such a common error I suppose I should stop bothering to point it out any more. But there are the several points at which the author demonstrates that she is unaware that the verb form of "mold" is "molder", rather than "mold", and so we're told that food is "molding" on tables; unless the food is sentient and sculpting something, she meant "moldering". There's the point at which we are told that the doors "closed quietly as his back" when Kirk walked through them; unless for some reason, Kirk's back is supposed (suppose?) to be the epitome of silence, I must assume this to be a typo meant to say "AT his back".
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4.0 out of 5 stars Star Trek- TOS: Shell Game Nov. 18 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Star Trek The Original Series: Shell Game written by Melissa Crandall is a story filled with mystry and intrigue as Kirk and crew try to solve the enigma as to why a Romulan space station is a drift in Federation space.
The Enterprise and crew are again on a routine mission like most of the Trek books start, but this time Kirk has to stay behind on the away mission. For Kirk to stay behind chewing at the bit is a hard swallow, but this time it is Spock and McCoy that go on the away mission and find the station and its personell in decay.
Of course, if you have a Romulan spacecraft in your backyard, so to speak, you want to visit it and determine if it can be of use. With a space station, along come the Romulans wanting to know what happened to their station and accuse the Federation of debauchery. Spock and McCoy are wonderfully portrayed in this book and their dilog is spot-on and you feel like they are arguing right in front of you. Kirk is not up to his ininate arrogrance, but is close and you feel the tension build.
Romulans intrigue, mystery, and strange apparitions, the Enterprise falling under the same situation as the space station with no power... whoa Nellie! Romulan accusations, treachery, and suspense, will the Enterprise be destroyed by the Romulans?
This book has ghostly apparitions along with everything else mentioned, but remember this there never is a routine mission for the Flagship of the fleet and her crew... not with James T. Kirk in the Captain's seat.
This is one of the better TREK novels and is worth the money if you can find it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Shell Game? Spooky Head Game Aug. 7 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This original Star Trek novel could very easily pass as a horror story, with its dark mysteries and spooky ghost inferences. The plot is strong and solid, and the story is intelligent and witty, even if it is very similar to Star Trek-TNG's "The Romulan Prize", which was released only two months after this one. Though I don't think there was any conspiring on behalf of either author, it's a strange coincedence. Anyway, the book is great as far as story goes, but the characters are a little bland.
McCoy's curmudgeon personality is perfectly captured in this story, but Kirk seems a little tired and out of character. One part of the novel that made me absolutely cringe was a spot where Spock and McCoy teamed up unconvincingly against Kirk to persuade him to stay on the Enterprise instead of joining the transport team to the mysterious Romulan space station. Kirk then proceeds to whine and explain himself, then bows to the pressure and stays behind. Right, and the Doomsday Machine simply wanted to engage in a friendly tea and crumpets.
Aside from a few character flaws, Crandall serves up a fine Star Trek novel, and I recommend it to anyone who enjoys a good read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A good Trek ghost story Jan. 9 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
In this, an Enterprise landing party explores a lifeless space station and experiences eerie, seemingly ghostly phenomena, while the Enterprise itself slowly loses power. The author does an excellent job of maintaining the spooky, tense atmosphere throughout the story. The writing is generally quite good. The descriptions are excellent and the action scenes as various people get into trouble very well done. The characterisation and dialogue is great, McCoy in particular having some classic commentary and wit. The writing in general does have some oddities. In particular, the author uses the occasional tautology, and at least one description (Kirk in a falling turbolift) is not as clear as it should be. Every so often the author gets a little long-winded with the descriptions. Those little quirks aside, this is a generally well written and entertaining story.
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