Star Trek: New Frontier

From Academic Kids

Star Trek: New Frontier is a Star Trek novel series created by John J. Ordover and Peter David and published by Pocket Books. The idea behind it was to create a Star Trek book series with its own continuity and not one that is purely reactionary to the television shows. Nearly every story of the series is written by series co-creator Peter David.

First published in 1997 as a serial consisting of four short novels, New Frontier is set in the Star Trek: The Next Generation universe, but in the wholly unexplored Sector 221-G, home of the recently fallen Thallonian Empire. The books generally follow the adventures of Captain Mackenzie Calhoun and his crew aboard the U.S.S. Excalibur.

Starting the series with a combination of new characters and former Next Generation guest stars, this gave David the opportunity to create his own corner of the Star Trek Universe. Over the years the series has become very popular and critically well-respected to the point that other authors have begun to reference characters and events from the New Frontier continuity, and New Frontier has even been involved in several major crossover events with the novels based on existing television series. The series even inspired its own action figure (one of Mackenzie Calhoun), something no Star Trek novel has done before.

Since the series is written almost exclusively by Peter David, the series shares a sense of humor and irony that is common to many of his writings. The books often take a slightly different tone than many of the other Star Trek novels, often being more violent and sexual than most of the other books. The series is also very willing to affectionately poke fun at its parent series. Another unusual quality is the series almost unique (among Star Trek books) ability and willingness to allow the characters to grow, change, and even die (or otherwise leave the series).

New Frontier may be considered a turning point in the printing of Star Trek novels. Encouraged by the freedom that this allowed and the popularity of New Frontier, the Star Trek editors started several new series over the years (with varying degrees of succeess), including Diane Carey's short lived Star Trek: Challenger, Michael Jan Friedman's Star Trek: Stargazer, Keith R. A. DeCandido's Star Trek: I.K.S. Gorkon, Star Trek: Vanguard, the e-Book series Star Trek: S.C.E. (Starfleet Corps of Engineers), and a handful of other individual novels not directly based on any series. Similarly, authors have taken advantage of this new freedom for the post-series Star Trek: Deep Space Nine relaunch and Star Trek: Voyager relaunch along with the post-film novels based on Star Trek: The Next Generation, including the spinoff Star Trek: Titan.

Although Peter David has authored nearly all stories in the New Frontier continuity, since he does not own the rights to the series, Pocket Books could theoretically give the series to another author, or even to a rotating series of authors. However, they have shown no indication of doing so, and at last announcement David is scheduled to be the author of any upcoming New Frontier novels.

Contents

Novels

Unless otherwise noted, all of the following novels were written by Peter David.

  • #1 - House of Cards
  • #2 - Into the Void
  • #3 - The Two Front War
  • #4 - End Game
  • #5 - Marytr
  • #6 - Fire on High
  • The Captain's Table Book 5: Once Burned
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation #55: Double Helix Book 5: Double or Nothing
  • Double Time (graphic novel) (with artists Mike Collins and David Roach)
  • #7 - The Quiet Place
  • #8 - Dark Allies
  • #9 - Excalibur Book 1: Requiem
  • #10 - Excalibur Book 2: Renaissance
  • #11 - Excalibur Book 3: Restoration
  • Gateways Book 6: Cold Wars
  • Gateways Book 7: What Lay Beyond (anthology): Death After Life
  • #12 - Being Human
  • #13 - Gods Above
  • #14 - Stone and Anvil
  • No Limits (anthology written by various authors, including Peter David)
  • After The Fall
  • Tales of the Dominion War (anthology): Stone Cold Truths
  • Tales from the Captain's Table (anthology): Pain Management

Several of these stories have also been reprinted elsewhere. Other novels have included or even focused on characters that star in the New Frontier universe. Because some of the characters originated in Star Trek: The Next Generation, some of these novels were actually released months or years before the first New Frontier book. Some of these books include:

  • Star Trek: The Next Generation books:
  • Vendetta by Peter David (featuring Shelby under her previous assignment with Captain Korsmo on the U.S.S. Chekov)
  • Triangle: Imzadi II by Peter David (featuring Shelby and Korsmo on the Excalibur)
  • #56: Double Helix Book 6: The First Virtue by Michael Jan Friedman and Christie Golden (happens in Thallonian space)
  • #6: Diplomatic Implausibility by Keith R. A. DeCandido (featuring a New Frontier cameo)
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation: Starfleet Academy books (for young readers):
  • #1: Worf's First Adventure by Peter David (featuring Soleta, Zak Kebron, and Mark McHenry)
  • #2: Line of Fire by Peter David (featuring Soleta, Zak Kebron, and Mark McHenry)
  • #3: Survival by Peter David (featuring Soleta, Zak Kebron, and Mark McHenry)
  • Other Star Trek books:
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation Gateways Book #3: Doors Into Chaos by Robert Greenberger (features Calhoun and Shelby in another perspective on a sequence shown in Cold Wars)
  • Star Trek: Deep Space Nine Gateways Book #4: Demons of Air and Darkness by Keith R. A. DeCandido (features Calhoun and Shelby in another perspective on a sequence shown in Cold Wars)
  • Star Trek The Lost Era: Catalyst of Sorrows by Margaret Wander Bonnano (featuring Dr. Selar)

Characters

Mackenzie Calhoun

Mackenzie Calhoun (born M'k'n'zy of Calhoun) is a member of the Xenexian species, a species that for years was under the rule of the Danteri species. Calhoun led the Xenexian revolution that freed them from the Danteri, a revolution that ended before Calhoun turned 20. After a visit from Stargazer captain Jean-Luc Picard, whom he had seen in a hallucinogenic vision prior to the meeting, Calhoun left his homeworld and joined Starfleet. After a falling out after the events surrounding the death of his captain on the U.S.S. Grissom, Calhoun left Starfleet, but was lured back by Picard and took command of the Excalibur. His cowboy-like command style sometimes irks his co-workers (particularly Shelby and Jellico), but he has always been able to get the job done.

Elizabeth Paula Shelby

Shelby first appeared in the Star Trek: The New Generation episodes "The Best of Both Worlds Parts 1 and 2", where she was played by Elizabeth Dennehy. Shelby was assigned to the U.S.S. Excalibur some years before New Frontier under the command of Captain Korsmo. She was romantically involved with Captain Calhoun during her time at Starfleet Academy. When the series began, she served as the first officer of the Excalibur under Captain Calhoun, and their relationship was decidedly platonic, but she has since married Captain Calhoun, been promoted to her own command as captain of the U.S.S. Trident, and been promoted again as an Admiral serving over the sector.

Burgoyne 172

A member of the Hermat species, Burgoyne is neither exactly male nor exactly female, but is instead a combination of the two. Originally Burgoyne served the Chief Engineer of the Excalibur under Captains Korsmo and Calhoun, but s/he has since received a promotion, and hir position is now that of First Officer of the current ship bearing that name. Became romantically involved with Dr. Selar, with whom s/he has had one child.

Dr. Selar

Originally appeared in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode "The Schizoid Man", where she was played by Suzie Plakson. See the linked article for more information.

Robin Lefler

Lefler served for a time on the U.S.S. Enterprise (where she appeared in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episodes "Darmok" and "The Game" as played by Ashley Judd), Lefler was later assigned as a navigator for the Excalibur. During this time she finally rediscovered her missing mother, Morgan. She also became romantically involved with (and later married) Si Cwan. She now lives with Cwan on a planet in the Thallonian Empire, where she serves as a Starfleet Ambassador.

Zak Kebron

Zak Kebron is a Brikar. He first appeared in the young adult Starfleet Academy novels, where he was shown as attending the Academy with Worf, McHenry, and Soleta. Kebron's species has a thick hide, are incredibly massive, and have a very long lifespan. They do not undergo their version of puberty for many years (by human standards), and Kebron underwent this phase while serving on the Excalibur. Originally the security officer, the metamorphosed Kebron (whose personality has become far more open and caring since his transformation) now serves double-duty as counselor on the current Excalibur.

Mark McHenry

Like Kebron, McHenry first appeared in the Starfleet Academy novels, where he was depicted as having many odd behaviors. He also has since demonstrated an uncanny ability to find his position in space without the aid of navigational instruments, which aided him as the Conn officer on the Excalibur. It was since discovered that these abilities were due to his parentage: His great-grandfather was the Greek god Apollo. Since discovering the source of his abilities (which have expanded significantly from what they first appeared), he has left his post on the Excalibur.

Soleta

Soleta was the third of the characters that originated in the Starfleet Academy novels. Soleta is half-Vulcan and half-Romulan. She served as the science officer of the Excalibur for many years until her true heritage was revealed. Soleta has since allied herself with the Romulan Empire.

Si Cwan

Si Cwan was once the ruler of the Thallonian Empire, until that Empire fell. He served for a time as a ambassador on the Excalibur before the creation of the New Thallonian Empire, which he currently is presiding over. He is currently married to Robin Lefler, who serves as an ambassador to his empire.

Admiral Edward Jellico

Admiral Jellico originall appeared in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episodes "Chain of Command Parts 1 and 2" (as played by Ronny Cox), at which time he held the rank of captain. As the series began, Jellico was the admiral serving over Sector 221-G. He had a rather hostile relationship with Calhoun, although this relationship has softened over the years.

Janos

Janos was originally described as a Mugato, but (at the request of Pocket Books) his species was later described as a mutation of an animal species. Although he served for a time as a security officer on the Excalibur, Janos currently resides on the world where he was originially created and is no longer an active member of Starfleet.

Kat Mueller

Commander Mueller originally served as the XO of the Excalibur (used here to mean the equivalent of the first officer for the night watch), but later became the first officer (and eventually captain) of the Trident.

Arex

Arex originally served on the U.S.S. Enterprise under Captain Kirk (as portrayed in the animated Star Trek, where he was voiced by James Doohan) as a security officer. The three-armed, three-legged officer was stuck in time until he was later recovered by Starfleet. He currently serves as the chief of security on the U.S.S. Trident.

M'Ress

M'Ress (also portrayed in the animated Star Trek, where she was voiced by Nichelle Nichols) served with Arex on the U.S.S. Enterprise as a communications officer. Like Arex, she was stuck in time for nearly a century and eventually joined the crew of the Trident as a science officer. She had some difficulty adapting to the new time period, which was not helped when she was mind-raped by another member of the crew. She has since adapted well, and now serves as chief science officer on the Trident. M'Ress is a Caitian and has many cat-like features, including pointed ears, a mane, and a tail.

Other characters

  • Kallinda: The younger sister of Si Cwan.
  • Moke: The adopted son of Mackenzie Calhoun. Like McHenry, his parentage includes a godlike being, from which he inherited some control over the weather.
  • Xyon: The first Xyon was the son that Mackenzie Calhoun didn't realize that he had. Xyon briefly traveled with the Excalibur (where he became romantically involved with Kallinda) before faking his own death. He later resurfaced when Kallinda became engaged to another individual. After the original Xyon faked his death, the offspring of Buroyne 172 and Dr. Selar was named after Xyon.
  • Takahashi: Takahashi (or "Hash") serves as the conn officer aboard the Trident.
  • Morgan Primus: Robin Lefler's mother. She bears a resemblance to Nurse Christine Chapel and Lwaxana Troi (both played by Majel Barrett). Her seemingly immortal body was destroyed during an attack by the Greek gods, but her mind was integrated into the Excalibur computer, where it remains.

Ships

The New Frontier series has followed the course of several different ships.

U.S.S. Excalibur

The original Excalibur is the ship featured in the silhouette on the New Frontier logo. It was an Ambassador-class starship. The Excalibur's commanders have included Captain Korsmo and Captain Calhoun. Captain Calhoun was believed dead for a time when the Excalibur was destroyed, but upon his return he was granted command of another ship of the same name, this one Galaxy-class.

U.S.S. Trident

The Trident was the first command of Elizabeth Shelby. Like the second Excalibur, it is a Galaxy-class starship. Shelby served as commanding officer of the ship for only a few years before she was promoted again to become Admiral of Sector 221-G (where the Trident was serving alongside the Excalibur), at which time her second-in-command, Katherine Mueller, became captain of the ship.

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