Trek to Madworld

The Enterprise, on a rescue mission to evacuate a colony, in intercepted by a spatial anomaly. Passing through, they find themselves in a strange bubble of space, and are greeted by a very eccentric, gnome-like man called Enowil, who turns out to be Organian.

Enowil has brought the Enterprise, as well as a Klingon and a Romulan ship, into his bubble in order for them to help him solve a problem: his life lacks something he needs to be happy, but he does not know what. Whoever can tell him what it is will receive in return a reward--anything he desires.

Enowil shows them many wonders, demonstrating that he lacks none of the things his guests suggest, but in the end, Kirk concludes: Enowil lacks an audience; people who, like they, exist and act independently of Enowil. For his reward, Kirk asks that Enowil create a planet and relocate the colonists there, and in return the colonists can be the audience Enowil needs.

The story is passable, but nothing special. Goldin's writing is good, though, and he handles the characters well. It's a decent book, and compares favorably to the other Trek books available at the time.

Notes

I may have read this before. The introduction, about Goldin being a were-koala, seems somehow familiar.

Furthermore, I suppose my reading Gerrold's columns in Starlog and his books has paid off, somehow. As I was reading the introduction, I thought "this is an odd way for an author to introduce his book" and then "this style feels a bit familiar" and so I checked the end of the introduction--indeed, it's David Gerrold, as I thought.

My copy of this book has probably a missing line on p. 51, and certainly two lines swapped on p. 147.

I didn't exactly predict the ending, but I had an approximation of all the main points by the time the book was halfway through.

Enowil's behavior is very reminiscent of Q--or of Trelane, who is mentioned in the story. I would not be surprised if whoever invented Q had read this book.

Character Type
Enowil Main
James T. Kirk Main
Metika Spyroukis Main
Name Role
Bantam Spectra Publisher
David Gerrold Foreword
Enric Torres-Prat Cover Artist
Stephen Goldin Author