BEA'S BOOK NOOK "I can't imagine a man really enjoying a book and reading it only once." C. S. Lewis “If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.” ― Oscar Wilde

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Bea Reviews Hidden Universe Travel Guide: Star Trek: Vulcan by Dayton Ward

Bea's Book Nook, Review, Hidden Universe Travel Guide: Star Trek: Vulcan, Dayton Ward
Series: Hidden Universe Book 1
Publisher: Insight Editions
Source: the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Release Date: July 19, 2016
Challenges: NetGalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge
Buying Links: Amazon* | Book Depository* | Barnes & Noble
* affiliate links; the blog receives a small commission from purchases made through these links.

Blurb from goodreads:

Set in the Star Trek universe, this Hidden Universe travel guide explores all that Vulcan—Spock’s home planet—has to offer in an interactive guidebook.

Plan your next trip to the planet Vulcan! Find restaurants that serve the best fried sandworms and Vulcan port. Take a trip to the Fire Plains or experience spring break at the Voroth Sea. Learn all about the native Vulcan people and their unusual customs. Discover how to correctly perform the traditional Vulcan salutation (you really don’t want to get this wrong). Learn key Vulcan phrases such as Nam-tor puyan-tvi-shal wilat: “Where is your restroom?” Find out what to do if you suddenly find yourself host to a katra—a Vulcan’s living spirit—at an inconvenient moment. All this and more can be found within the pages of this essential travel guide to one of the most popular—and logical—destinations in the known universe.

This Hidden Universe travel guide draws on 50 years of Star Trek TV shows, films, and novels to present a comprehensive guide to Spock’s iconic home world. Modeled after real-world travel guides, the book will explore every significant region on Vulcan with fascinating historical, geographical, and cultural insights that bring the planet to life like never before. Also featuring a dynamic mixture of classic Star Trek imagery and original illustrations created exclusively for the book, Hidden Universe Travel Guide: Star Trek: Vulcan is the perfect way to celebrate 50 years of Star Trek and will thrill pop culture fans and hardcore Star Trek fans alike.

My Thoughts:

I enjoyed Dayton's voice and humor, though it was a bit inconsistent, veering from dry Vulcan-type humor to slightly snarky human-type humor and back again. Still, the book was well-researched and Dayton seemed to get the Vulcan way of thinking. There were references to people, places, and events from the movies and authorized books, including one of my favorites, [book:Uhura's Song|216847]. They were a good touch and nice little Easter eggs. Several of the chapters had short intros that were 'written' by characters, mostly Vulcans, from the different TV shows in the Trek universe. He did a good job of writing in their voices, especially the piece from Dr. McCoy of the original series.

Like any real guidebook, this one gives a brief history of locales with the major points of interest, places to stay, etc. I did think some of the night life and events seemed unlikely for Vulcans; they stretched credibility. Most were right on point though and I found myself wishing I could visit a few of the places listed!

I mentioned the humor earlier; I want to share a few of my favorite quotes:

There's a distinct possibility that the planet might not exist in all realities, universes, and timelines. Check with your travel agent for details.

Don't get eaten. Great care is taken to preserve the planet's expansive undeveloped areas and limit the introduction of anything that might damage these fragile ecosystems. Le-matyas and other indigenous wildlife subsist on smaller, slower life forms that are native to the region, and the introduction of exotic foodstuffs (e.g. you) may disrupt their diets and have unforeseen effects on the food chain.

A fun book, not at all dry, and well researched even though it does take a few liberties.

ETA: I forgot to mention that the blurb lies when it calls the book interactive. It's no more interactive than any other ebook. Which was unfortunate because there were some excellent opportunities: say a link to a re-enactment of a speech by Surak or the first contact with humans, a video of a live music performance at a festival, a video tour of one of the monasteries, etc. But nope, just ye basic digital ebook. :(


  1. An interactive guide to Vulcan? Wow. How cool. I think we've only had a few glimpses of Vulcan (I'm thinking amok time and a few scenes in the older movies?) but I could be wrong since I'm a TOS guy and not up on the latest stuff. I do like those quotes- the crack about not being in all timelines made me smile, as blowing up Vulcan was one of the cardinal sins of the first reboot movie for me. :)

    The second one is good too- I imagine Vulcan would be quite unforgiving. Sounds like a solid book!

    And I like that cover.

    1. I like the cover too. The blurb however lies, I need to add that to my review: the book is no more interactive than any other ebook. :( An interactive guide book would have been cool.

      The destruction of Vulcan in the reboot was shocking and I have mixed feelings about it. But yes, that quote about timelines did make me laugh. Overall, I enjoyed the book.

  2. This sounds great! I love the cover!


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