Jim Pike works in a dead end job with a minimum of responsibilities at a hotel. Although he has the capability and intelligence to do something significant with his life, he avoids responsibility like the plague. When he spent two tours of duty in Afghanistan, his confidence in himself and with people as whole was completely shattered. Now he has to deal with GenCon, the Star Trek convention that has started in the hotel. Things couldn’t be more disastrous. The attendance at the convention is well below what was expected. Employees are calling in sick and if they bother to show up, they disappear. Many people report being bitten by random strangers and develop flu-like symptoms shortly afterwards. Jim’s gut feeling tells him something is really wrong here, but Jim’s brain convinces him that it’s just paranoia. There’s no such thing as zombies, right?
I thought this was going to be the mash-up book that was too cheesy to be good, but I ended up reading the entire thing in one day. It was so engaging, I couldn’t put it down. It mashes together two things I really enjoy: zombies and Star Trek. I grew up watching Star Trek: The Next Generation, so I have pretty much always been a moderate Trekkie. I really enjoyed all the attention to detail in the book. Every chapter heading was named after a Star Trek episode. There were huge amounts of references to all the Star Trek series throughout the book. The author must be nerds as well or they did massive amounts of research in order to appear so.
The characters are all multidimensional, realistic people. Many of the people I got attached to ended up dying, which surprised me. I figured time wouldn’t be spent on a lot of character development if they’re just going to die. I really like Jim and his hero journey, from an outcast of the lowest order to a leader. The zombies are also pretty cool. These aren’t your run of the mill zombies, but ones induced by alien parasites, kind of like in Scott Sigler’s Infected. They cause people to sprout an extra eye and have the ability to mesmerize people. Eating flesh isn’t needed for their survival, but as means of transmitting more parasites to more people. Their biology is interested and provides a new spin on the zombie.
Night of the Living Trekkies is a fast, light read that grabs you doesn’t let go. The Star Trek information is presented in such a way that fans would recognize some more subtle Star Trek allusions, but there are plenty that are explained so no readers would feel left out if they don’t know Star Trek canon very well. I think everyone could find something that they like in it.
My rating: 4/5 fishmuffins
The nice people at Quirk books sent me a copy of the book and 2 posters to give away. There will be 2 winners: first place wins the book and a poster and second place wins a poster. Just one entry for everyone by answering this question: Do you like Star Trek? Why or why not? Remember to leave an email address. Open internationally. Ends 10/8, winner announced shortly after.