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Vanguard - Harbinger
August 2005 Cover Image


  • 388 Pages
  • August 2005
  • Pocket Books
  • Paperback
  • $7.99 U.S.
  • $11.99 Canada
ISBN: 1-4165-0774-1

By: David Mack

Book #1

Returning from its historic first voyage to the edge of the galaxy, the damaged U.S.S. Enterprise journeys through the Taurus Reach, a vast and little-known region of space in which a new starbase has been unexpectedly established.  Puzzled by the Federation's interest in an area so far from its borders and so near the xenophobic Tholian Assembly, Captain James T. Kirk orders the Enterprise to put in for repairs at the new space station: Starbase 47, also known as Vanguard.

As Kirk ponders the mystery of the enormous base, he begins to suspect that there is much more to Vanguard than meets the eye.  It's a suspicion shared by the Tholians, the Orions, and the Klingon Empire, each of whom believes that there are less than benign motives behind the Federation's sudden and unexplained desire to explore and colonize the Taurus Reach.

But when a calamity deep within the Reach threatens to compromise Starfleet's continued presence in the region, Kirk, Spock and several key specialists from the Enterprise must assist
Vanguard's crew in investigating the cause of the disaster and containing the damage.  In the process, they learn the true purpose behind the creation of Vanguard, and what the outcome of its mission may mean for life throughout that part of the galaxy.


This novel is actually book #1 in a new series called "Vanguard." If you're a regular reader of these reviews then you know I'm not a huge fan of multiple novel stories, but these days that seems to be all there is so I guess I'd better get used to them.

One of the first things I realized was that this wasn't a Kirk / Spock / McCoy novel but rather a novel where the Enterprise crew makes an appearance now and then in support of the main characters, of which there are many.

There's a bit of 'housekeeping' to do at the start of the story; setting everything up and introducing you to all the characters and at times I found it difficult to remember some of the character's details but Mr. Mack provides us with a very handy character guide at the back of the book. Very clever idea... I used it several times.

Once the story gets going there's plenty to keep you entertained.  Lots of well developed characters, each with their own story arc but with no doubt as to where each fit into the main story.  Lots of action and plenty of intrigue as well; enough to satisfy everyone.

If I had to pick a favorite character I'd pick Tim Pennington. He seemed to be the character I most identified with and to me he was the most likable.  And, without giving anything away, I'll add this... you just gotta feel sorry for the guy for what happens to him at the end of the story!


Errand of Fury - Seeds of RageVanguard: Summon the Thunder


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