Book Review: ‘Before Dishonor’ by Peter David

July 27, 2022 at 6:55 am | Posted in Books, Reviews, Sci-Fi, Star Trek | Leave a comment
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Star Trek: Before Dishonor is a novel in The Next Generation line of Star Trek novels featuring The Borg. It was written by Peter David and was released in November of 2007. 

Wow! I am shocked at how good this book is. After reading the Destiny trilogy and Greater Than the Sum (both published after this book) I was worried I would feel Borg fatigue. This book is by far the biggest, most epic, and most well written of the bunch. This might go down as one of my favorite Star Trek books ever made!!!

This is an action packed book that feels so cinematic. This would have been a superb movie script. This feels like an epic showdown with the Borg that fans have wanted. Destiny turned into being more about the Caeliar (which was a good story) and Greater Than the Sum was smaller and not as action packed. First Contact was so small in scale and different that it doesn’t feel like the epic Borg showdown it was promised as. This book, however, sets up all the promises, and delivers on all of them!

The strongest part of this book is the writing style. In this book, Peter David is able to effectively capture the tone of all the characters involved, capture the classic Star Trek feeling, and also just make the story entertaining. This is one of the most purely entertaining stories I’ve read in Star Trek. Everything is properly balanced, no aspect of the story has too much time, too much humor, or too much heaviness to it. It is simply perfectly executed. 

The humor in this book is on point. I can confidently say I have never laughed so much in a single Star Trek novel, and there have been several quite funny ones written. Spock and Seven of Nine delivered the best deadpan humor moments, with several others coming from Worf, Janeway, Nechayev, and Kadhota. Seriously, the humor here was great.

I do have one criticism that I didn’t love everything revolving around the climax of Janeway’s arc. Had this truly been the end, I would have been massively disappointed, which is why I think Kirsten Beyer was wise to bring her back later on in some capacity. 

Despite being a Next Generation title, this really is Seven Of Nine’s book. As such, she really shines and not only is interesting, but has several great discussions in this book about her character development in the Star Trek series. This book really is the culmination of her character arc since she came on board in Voyager season four. 

The Borg action was massive and delightful. I kept thinking “no they can’t go bigger”, and yet they would. If Destiny had utilized this scope, it could have been my favorite Star Trek story. As such, this takes the Borg story away and shows how its truly done. 

I also thought that Peter David handled Lady Q well, although that is probably considered to be his strongest aspect, as he has written so many Q stories. I really didn’t like his book with John De Lancie “I, Q”, but I thought he knocked Lady Q out of the park here. 

Overall, this is a superb story and is one of the most entertaining books of media tie-in fiction I’ve ever read. This goes up there in my all time favorites list. It does not come close to the Prey trilogy for me, but it is up there with Takedown, The Fall, and The Antares Maelstrom. Well done Peter David! Five out of five!

Reviewed By: Jonathan Koan for Roqoo Depot.

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