Star Trek: The Official Guide to the Animated Series Hardcover
By Aaron Harvey, Rich Schepis
Afterword by Dayton Ward
Publisher: Weldon Owen
Release date: September 3, 2019
This week marks the 53rd anniversary of the premiere of the original Star Trek television series, and though it aired only for three seasons, it ended up being the start of one of the greatest science fiction franchises. After the TV show’s cancellation in 1969, the series increased in popularity during syndication and thanks to great fan interest, a new series was created — this time, for Saturday morning television. On September 8, 1973, seven years after the premiere of the original series, NBC aired the first episode of Star Trek: The Animated Series, an animated sequel series featuring voice acting from most of the original cast. Here we are now at exactly 46 years later, and Weldon Owen publishers has just released Star Trek: The Official Guide to the Animated Series.
Star Trek: Vulcan Hidden Universe Travel Guide Book 1 Paperback
By Dayton Ward
Art by Livio Ramondelli and Peter Markowski
Publisher: Insight Editions
Release date: July 19, 2016
Of all the planets in the Star Trek universe, Vulcan is perhaps the most intriguing to fans of the franchise, thanks to its distinction as being the home world of Mr. Spock. Therefore, it makes sense that for the launch of their Hidden Universe travel guide book series, Insight Editions selected Vulcan as its first destination with Hidden Universe: Star Trek: A Travel Guide to Vulcan!
Modeled after color travel guides books by the likes of Fodor’s and National Geographic, in A Travel Guide to Vulcan!, Dayton Ward provides readers with all the pertinent information needed to properly traverse the planet and interact with locals, as well as where to eat, sleep, shop, sightsee, and much more.
Dayton Ward, writer of books we love like Star Trek: That Which Divides and Star Trek: From History’s Shadow, pointed out on his website that it was 49 years ago today that the original filming model of the U.S.S. Enterprise was delivered and used for the pilot episode of Star Trek and other subsequent episodes of the original series.
On December 29, 1964, the 11-foot “miniature” of the now-famous starship, which was created from a 3-foot prototype by model-maker Richard C. Datin, was delivered by the Howard Anderson Company to Paramount Studios, which then donated the model in 1974 to the National Collection at the Smithsonian‘s National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC, where it’s still on display.
Star Trek: Vanguard: Storming Heaven is the first Vanguard book I’ve read, though it’s the eighth – and final — installment in the series. As I began reading Storming Heaven, I couldn’t help but wonder, where has this series been all my life?
The Star Trek books I’ve read before mostly centered on the crew of the original series, and for some reason, I was under the impression that the Star Trek: Vanguard series contained all new characters with no one from any previous Trek movies or television shows. Man, was I wrong. While Vanguard does introduce a lot — and I mean a lot — of new characters, there’s plenty of familiar faces as well, including Captain James T. Kirk, as the events take place in what would be the second half of the original television show’s third season.
But Kirk and crew are not the center of the Vanguard story, though if you’re a Star Trek fan, you’ll recognize several other people in Storming Heaven, including Dr. Carol Marcus, the Klingon Chancellor Gorkon (when he was Councillor), and the Klingon General Chang (when he was a Captain), all in their pre-Star Trek movie incarnations. This is something about the book that I absolutely loved, because we got to learn about significant events in their lives that lead up to the events of the movies.
Star Trek: That Which Divides is an example of a great Star Trek story. It takes us to the era of The Original Series with Kirk, Spock, Scotty, and McCoy all in the officer’s lounge playing a poker game in which Spock is cleaning them out. Kirk aboard the Enterprise is en route to the Kondaii system to investigate a spatial rift that is surrounding a planetoid that is a key mining colony and to investigate a Federation vessel that crashed there and look for survivors. The rift opens up every three years allowing trade between the small planetoid and the other inhabited planet in the system. The species in the system are called the Dolysians and they are humanoid. They have low level warp technology which allows them to send ships through the rift.