Star Trek: Strangers from the Sky (Adapted) Audible Audiobook – Original recording
In the late 21st century, humanity has united after countless years of warfare, and turns toward the stars. But when an alien spacecraft crashlands in the South Pacific bearing visitors from another world, the Vulcans, Earth must decide whether to extend the hand of friendship or the fist of war.
In the distant future, horrible dreams torment Admiral James T. Kirk, dreams prompted by his reading of Strangers from the Sky, a book about that historic first contact. He dreams of an alternate reality where he somehow changed the course of history, and destroyed the Federation before it began.
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|Listening Length||1 hour and 31 minutes|
|Author||Margaret Wander Bonanno|
|Narrator||George Takei, Leonard Nimoy|
|Audible.com Release Date||April 06, 2010|
|Publisher||Simon & Schuster Audio|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #180,720 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#2,856 in Space Opera Science Fiction (Audible Books & Originals)
#11,104 in Space Operas
Top reviews from the United States
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This is part of why I, and so many others, have enjoyed the book, Strangers from the Sky, by Margaret Wander Bonano. First published in the mid-1980's, it has become a classic Star Trek novel, and almost the standard of what a good Trek novel is. The book is essentially a story within a story.
The fictional "history" in the novel (which would later be retconned by the 1996 movie Star Trek: First Contact) is that the Vulcans had finally revealed themselves to Humankind when the crew of an Earth space vessel stumbled upon a damaged Vulcan science research ship. This happens in the Trek universe in the year 2065. Every Federation citizen from the youngest on up to the oldest, knows this to be true. The truth is that every Federation citizen is wrong according to a new book that Admiral James T. Kirk's fellows officers and enlisted personnel (and most other Federation citizens) are reading and raving about. The book, Strangers from the Sky, alleges that two Vulcans visited Earth and were evacuated by rescuers nearly two decades before the official "first contact", AND that this was all covered up by both the Vulcan and Earth governments.
At first, Kirk resists the pressure to read the galactic best-seller that Bones McCoy attempts to recommend to him, but after enough times of having the new "history book" foisted on him from every direction by every person he knows and works with, Kirk finally says no mas and decides to read it after all. That's when the trouble begins.
Kirk begins having dreams and nightmares of the events of the novel, and firmly believes that he lived through them. Captain Spock, sensing his friend's distress, begins having his own nightmares as well, similar to Kirk's, but with his own scenarios. This is despite the fact that Spock is out in space training cadets on board the Enterprise and hasn't spoken to Kirk (who is in San Francisco at Starfleet HQ) for some weeks, and thus has no clue what ails him.
Of course, this gets them both in serious trouble, as their mental stability is called into question. Others rightfully ask how they could possibly "remember" events that took place long before they were even born. To prove their sanity, the two must delve into their memories via Vulcan Mind Meld, and record what really happened on a scouting trip long ago at the beginning of their acquaintance as they originally began a certain five-year mission....
So begins a Star Trek story with so many elements (including magic, fantasy, science-fiction, time travel, speculative fiction) that only an author of Bonano's caliber actually could pull it off. Despite it's quirkiness, the story is beloved by fans, and for good reason. It is not the same typical Trek story that everyone is used to reading or watching (not that such stories are not great themselves, understand), because the "action" is extremely limited to one incident in the last couple of chapters. This story relies for it's success on the strong narrative, characterization, and the sense of wonder that epitomizes the franchise.
Not that everything was perfect in the tale. Bonano seems to have a bit too much fun making comedy at McCoy's expense in the book, and that annoyed me, as McCoy is one of my favorite characters. The author seems to include a few potshots at political and cultural ideas that are not necessary to the story. Whether this her trying to stay somewhat faithful to Roddenberry's concept, or her own political bias is unclear, but it does get annoying after a while, especially since, again, it did not need to be there. It gets old quickly to have the internationalist "political" angle gotten into specifically, instead of generally, as usually happens, in Trek stories. That said, the author joins other Trek authors and creators in being somewhat more friendly towards religion than were Roddenberry's more hard-line atheist views. That was much appreciated. All in all, a great read.
Top reviews from other countries
Ironically, I thought that Spock's storyline in the book was the most impactful and emotional.
Yes this opportunity was wasted and then abused with the use of the lines from show that showed the death of Gary Michell and Lee Kiso.
Sorry it didn't work for me.