Plot or Premise
Janeway and her crew are in desperate need of shore leave…and they receive an invitation from an uncharted planet to visit and enjoy the paradise nature of the lands. All is not necessarily as it seems, including the citizens’ treatment of their pets, the Neffaler, which seem surprisingly intelligent, almost sentient.
What I Liked
Good descriptive prose, with lots of little sub-stories — Kes’ pre-occupation and disturbing telepathic forces, Paris’ involvement with the daughter of the leader, and Torres’ desire to find the source of some dilithium signatures.
What I Didn’t Like
The sub-stories don’t come together as well as they could, so the overall story is long and rather confusing at times. Many of the characters seem “off” from their TV version, perhaps reflecting the author’s preoccupation with the characters’ lives early in the series’ history. Lots of descriptions are heavy on the visual, which would be impressive if it was a TV episode rather than a book, but it doesn’t work as well here. The ending is rather fragmented, focusing on three different groups’ actions at the same time.
The Bottom Line
Would have worked better as an episode than a book.