Diane Carey is a multiply-published author of Star Trek novels, and is frequently the one called upon to write novelizations of popular episodes. This is unfortunate, because her strengths as a writer lie in her ability to create interesting plots and characters, abilities which do not come into play when novelizing someone else's story. Granted, she is also good at pacing and the building of tension, which DO come into play here, as does her ability to make characters come to life, if not as much as it would were she writing her own story.
Her weakness, unfortunately, is in her nuts-and-bolts use of the language. She tries desperately to make creative and original use of the language; generally, all she manages is to distract the reader by misusing words clumsily. This isn't ALWAYS the case; there were very few examples of misused words in "Ship of the Line" and "Day of Honor, Part 1". On the other hand, "The Search" and "Descent" were practically unreadable due to the frequency with which she butchered the language.
This book falls about midway between her two extremes; nowhere near as bad as "The Search" and "Descent", but nowhere near as good as the previously mentioned books. Better than "Way of the Warrior", but not as good as "Battlestations" or "Dreadnought", it is probably closest in quality to "Flashback", although the writing is not quite as good as the writing there.
Which is a real shame, because this is perhaps THE best story in the Star Trek franchise, certainly in the top ten. It deserved better than the mediocre handling it received here; it seems to me that, even ignoring Diane Carey's weird use of language, the story was much better fitted to Peter David's style, and would have worked much better if he'd been the one writing the novelization.