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4.0 out of 5 stars Sci Fi authors might SEEM to live in the future...
...but they really live in the present, and tend to imprint present-day issues on the time period they're writing about. This "New Earth" series is no exception--from the git-go, anti-government "individualists" have posed as much a problem to this new colony as "alien space invaders" or forces of nature. It's bad enough that in previous...
Published on Aug. 6 2000 by R. L. MILLER

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3.0 out of 5 stars Rough Trials, Rough Reading!
Rough Trials was... OKAY. Lets not give it too much credit though. One thing thats great about this particular book is that it finally gives the minor characters the spotlight and puts the dynamic trio, Kirk, Spock, McCoy, a back seat in this book. First Uhura finally gets to do more than sit in the back of the Bridge and repeat the computer. She has a large role...
Published on July 10 2000 by decaptain


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4.0 out of 5 stars Sci Fi authors might SEEM to live in the future..., Aug. 6 2000
By 
R. L. MILLER (FT LAUDERDALE FL USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Rough Trails (Star Trek: New Earth, Book 3) (Mass Market Paperback)
...but they really live in the present, and tend to imprint present-day issues on the time period they're writing about. This "New Earth" series is no exception--from the git-go, anti-government "individualists" have posed as much a problem to this new colony as "alien space invaders" or forces of nature. It's bad enough that in previous volumes they had to cross a battleground between two warring cultures on the way to the Promised Land, not to mention showing up just in time for a cataclysm right out of Niven's "Lucifer's Hammer"--now there are two groups from their own population who make war on the mainstream and each other--a survivalist group called the "Carsons" and a vigilante outfit called the "Peacemakers". One thing the three factions have in common--they can't ANY of 'em stand Starfleet! Remind you of anything you encounter on the Nightly News? One remark by a character is probably a bit of social commentary on the part of authors Graf and Carey--certain colonists who are resentful of the way the Federation "stifles" their freedom tend to forget that it also provides a safety net. If only we of the 21st Century could see beyond the ends of our own noses and realize that!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Well-written "minor" character story, July 21 2000
By 
Chuck Martin (San Francisco, CA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Rough Trails (Star Trek: New Earth, Book 3) (Mass Market Paperback)
Rough Trails rebounds the New Earth series back into the running of quality Star Trek stories. Working through the trials of Uhura, Sulu, and especially Chekov--who *almost* gets a love interest--is especially rewarding as the characters work with their strengths and falter with their weaknesses in a plot with some well-thought-out twists and turns. In a way, it's just another story of human greed, where the perceptions of people are not always what they seem. But though the story itself is old (what story isn't?), this is a tale that will keep you turning pages (it did to me last night, as I read the last page, satisfied, at 2:30am). Who needs alien villians when humanity, even in the 23rd century, still has enough? Will human greed ever become sated? I have to say that I did not like the character Sedlak, who seemed totally out of place, merely a prop for the needs of the rest of the plot. Once out of the way, the story took interesting twists and turns, and right up until the end, you couldn't necesarily be sure who were the Good Guys and who were the Bad Guys. The last few pages took the book off on a totally unrelated tangent, seeming to set up potential plots for further down the series. Not only was this part out of place after what happened in this book, but characters explained potential causes, thereby ruining any future suspense. All in all, though, a well done story.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Rough Trails and rough reading, July 11 2000
By 
C. Daniel Lucas (Cary, NC USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Rough Trails (Star Trek: New Earth, Book 3) (Mass Market Paperback)
I'm not a big reader of Star Trek books and am not familiar with L.A. Graf, but Rough Trails was disappointing, at best. 1.) I'm just not really interested in Sulu, Chekov or Uhura. To me they are accessory players and character development of the three these long 360 pages was minimal. 2.) L.A. Graf seemed more interested in words and not the story. How many times did he/she describe olivium dust and olivium dust storms? How many times must we be reminded that the Star Trek crew is intrigued by a bullet-shooting rifle? I got it the first time...okay? 3.) The western theme was fun but compomised by the fact that it's been done before and the fact that L.A. Graf didn't use it to the extreme. If you're doing the stereotypical western, where were the big shoot-outs? stampedes? bar maids? gruff but honest sheriff? 4.) Gwen Thee was a pretty good character, and the fact that Chekov didn't bed down with her was fun. But, L.A. Graf should've had her die at the end. It could've added some dimension to Chekov and the actual ending (a cook-out? jeez...) would not have been so sappy. This book would've been great at 200 pages. I feel I read 160 pages of needless writing.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Rough Trials, Rough Reading!, July 10 2000
This review is from: Rough Trails (Star Trek: New Earth, Book 3) (Mass Market Paperback)
Rough Trials was... OKAY. Lets not give it too much credit though. One thing thats great about this particular book is that it finally gives the minor characters the spotlight and puts the dynamic trio, Kirk, Spock, McCoy, a back seat in this book. First Uhura finally gets to do more than sit in the back of the Bridge and repeat the computer. She has a large role in this book. Janice Rand is also out and about, tracking down the lost Enterprise Away Team. Checkov and Sulu are there too. Now what went wrong you may say? I didn't really get into the book until page 200. Its slow. Its grueling at the beginning and you say 'darn, you finally have a book where the meek inherit Belle Terre and its boring and slow at the beginning'. If the author put Janice Rand in this book, he should have also put Christine Chapel in it SOMEWHERE... Im sure if the Enterprise was going on some desperate misson 6 months away from the Federation that Doctor Chapel would come along too. The entire first half of the book is your classic Trek story: Shuttle crash and Checkov is lost, Sulu, Uhura, Rand, Scotty all search for him. Then Sulu AND Checkov are lost. Then the colonist take Scotty and Rand hostage when the flood of a centurey is about to happen. COME ON! Anyways, its okay as I said. I don't think you'll miss too much if you accidently skip this book and read the others which are more... interesting in my own opinion.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A different focus: Chekov & Co. take the spotlight, July 7 2000
By 
John DiBello (Brooklyn, NY) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Rough Trails (Star Trek: New Earth, Book 3) (Mass Market Paperback)
I've been following Pocket Books' "Star Trek" publishing program closely since "The Entropy Effect," and it's interesting to consider the editorial changes in the series since then. For the longest time Pocket seemed to publish books that focused strictly on the main characters of Kirk, Spock, and McCoy (or Picard, Worf, and Data). Adventures which explored the Trek universe from other points of view and introduced new characters or featured the supporting casts were few and far between (a couple excellent exceptions being John Ford's "The Final Reflection" and Diane Duane's "My Enemy, My Ally"). Disgruntled Trek authors have even complained that their books were rewritten in order to place the focus more squarely on Kirk and Spock. I'm happy to say that all of that has changed dramatically over the past couple years. Sure, every other month there's a standard Kirk or Picard book, but now there's also such unconventional adventures as Peter David's excellent Excalibur/Calhoun series and *this* new entry in the "Star Trek: New Earth" series. The focus this time is on Chekov, Sulu, Uhura, Scotty, and Janice Rand, and I enjoyed the exploration of their personalities and quirks in a tale where they weren't overshadowed by Kirk and Spock. The entire "New Earth" saga so far has proven to be unconventional and compelling in its approach, and although there are some minor problems here (background characters on the radiation-blasted Belle Terre come and go without much effect, and L.A. Graf's action scenes tend to happen very suddenly, followed by chapter after chapter of making you wait for the *next* action sequence), this is another strong entry that I have to recommend for those fans who enjoy our "second bananas" and think they warrant an adventure of their own. The whole "New Earth" concept has so much promise that I'm glad each contributing author has taken a different approach; I'm looking forward to the last three books in the series--actually there's enough material and story potential in the concept for even a few more books beyond that!
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2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, July 5 2000
This review is from: Rough Trails (Star Trek: New Earth, Book 3) (Mass Market Paperback)
Not only is Rough Trails the title of the latest entry in the New Earth series, but it pretty accurately sums up the entire book. I'd honestly been looking forward to the book--the first two moved by at a brisk, entertaining pace. However, Rough Trails hits the skids quickly and early on and is tedious at best.
L.A. Graf has never been my favorite Trek author, but the writers who use this psuedonym have surprised me in the past, and I'd hoped they'd do it again here. Alas, it was not to be.
Part of the problem is that it's hard to really care about any of these characters beyond the Enterprise crew. Also, part of it is that none of them are given enough depth so that you feel compelled to keep reading the story to see how it turns out.
Another factor is that it's a bad Western plotline. A local government has set up an elite group of Peacemakers who are running things and damn anyone who stands in their way. I don't have a problem with the theme of exploring the wild frontier in a Trek book, but I wish the authors had taken a few more chances with it rather than giving us this rather trite and predictable storyline.
The only reason to recommend this book is that there are certain events that take place that should affect later novels. I won't reveal the big secret here so as not to ruin it for anyone. But it is an interesting development and you can see how it might affect future books.
So, if you're a completist, give this one a read. If not, you can probably skip it and move on to the next book.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Great story bad writing, Dec 29 2003
This review is from: Rough Trails (Star Trek: New Earth, Book 3) (Mass Market Paperback)
I gotta admit the first chapter or so bored me to death. But the story gets really good. I love the actual story format, but I don't like the way the writer wrote the story. What really threw me off is you have to really pay attention to the book when reading it, not distractions, because you'll miss key parts. ITs alomst like the writer put in detail in a sentence that tells you why something happend, and it seems to be put in out of the blue. Also like Dian Carey, they start another scene/chapter expecting you to have followed along, just giving a little back story of what happend since the previous chapter, and that just sucks. Like one page they're in the air in a shuttle, and the beginning of the next chapter they're walking the ground and getting shot at, and not untill a page or so later does the author exaplin what happend. Other then that though the storyline was awesome really entertaining.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Not the best of Star Trek, July 4 2000
This review is from: Rough Trails (Star Trek: New Earth, Book 3) (Mass Market Paperback)
I enjoyed the book, but then again I have been a fan since 1966. This book is 3 of 6, it can stand alone but it helps to read all in sequence. The main Star Trek character in the book is Chekov who with some help from Uhura, Sulu and a little from Scotty try to help out the disgruntled settlers on a new world that kind of blame the Federation and Kirk (who is off world keeping space pirates away) for making things there worse. It seems when you have trilogies, foursome and now a six book sets the Star Trekness is waterdowned, but if you are a true fan you always enjoys meeting your Trek freinds again. However, if you are not a Trek fan, I would advise starting with the old shows, movies and books rather then starting with this book.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Good Concept, needs better writers, July 19 2000
This review is from: Rough Trails (Star Trek: New Earth, Book 3) (Mass Market Paperback)
The New Earth Series was an awesome concept, but the implementation left something to be desired. I have dutifully slogged through the first 4 books of the series hoping they would improve...The characterization was good, but the plots were lame and the writing was horribly slow and pathetic. How many times do I need to be reminded what causes Gamma Night and how long the blackout lasts? Where in the series was it explained how the Kauld suddenly stopped being on the verge of death? AND...Oh my GOD, the world's in danger and we need to evacuate everybody...No, we can save the world, but we need every ship, so we won't have any ships to evacuate the planet. Tired. Get this one from the library, so you can return it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable..Nice to see the secondary crew out, July 10 2000
This review is from: Rough Trails (Star Trek: New Earth, Book 3) (Mass Market Paperback)
This book focuses on the secondary crew..Scotty, Uhura, Sulu, Chekov, and gives all of them a nice chance to shine. The plot does seem recycled, but it's a nice diversion from the "got to save the planet" theme of the other two books. Now we just have to save a part...lol
I have to say...I'm really enjoying this new take from Pocket, instead of just a bunch of monthly books, an arch from each. Very nice. Keeps me coming back for more now rather than..nice..another Star Trek book. Good book start the series at Book 1 though!
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Rough Trails (Star Trek: New Earth, Book 3)
Rough Trails (Star Trek: New Earth, Book 3) by L.A. Graf (Mass Market Paperback - 2000)
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