Lancaster And York: The Wars Of The Roses by Alison Weir
This 1995 work is sadly dull like ‘Henry VIII: King and Court’ and ‘Isabella: She-Wolf Of France, Queen Of England’. It covers the overthrow of Richard II, the usurper Henry IV, the glorious Henry V, the enigmatic Henry VI and the usurper/rightful King (depending on how you view it) Edward IV.
It also covers various warring rebels (all of whom have the same name, get killed off and replaced by their similarly named sons), overlooked women, battles, explicit promises broken, ineffectual peace and the grasping Queens Margaret Of Anjou (wife of Henry VI) and Elizabeth Wydville (wife of Edward IV). But is all so dull: this happened, that happened, the institution of kingship was irreparably damaged, the constructed romantic ideals never happened and the future Richard III has evil intentions. Henry VI has a profound lack of common sense and there is an enormous indifference to the suffering of the common folk who are just getting on with life.
People are acquisitive, make their enemies and have ignominious ends. There is ill feeling, raging mania, bungling ineptitude, fateful friendships and the future Henry VII lurks unnoticed. One is comprehensively exhausted but not entertained after finishing this.
“Whose reputation was such that people would easily believe the worst of her.”
“York hammered at the door of the King’s privy chamber and insisted on being admitted, whereupon a petrified Henry agreed to let him in.”
“Would have a political voice at last, but no one would necessarily heed it.”
“Could have as much roast as he might carry upon a large dagger.”
“Brought to desolation.”
“Regarding each other with ill-concealed animosity.”
“Hated him deadly.”
“Her frowning was their undoing and her indignation their death.”
Star Trek The Original Series: Prime Directive by Judith & Garfield Reeves-Stevens
This 1991 novel comes from the authors of the superior ‘Memory Prime’ and ‘Federation’. The senior officers of the Enterprise have been disgraced and forced out of Starfleet. They are accused of violating the Prime Directive and causing the destruction of the pre First Contact world of Talin in a nuclear holocaust. The crew are resilient and have notions and in criminally dull fashion return to Talin to set right what once went wrong. This is not a chilling relevant tale of the madness that attends efforts to extend the frontier. This was not magnificently austere.
There are absurd levels of obstructive bureaucrats and continuing mayhem. The ending is a comparatively gutless asspull as worthwhile lessons are learned with no zest. There is snittiness and a Final Climatic Hearing. This was without charm. Thorny issues are raised and ignored in unsatisfactory fashion.
The obvious negative side effects of Kirk’s recklessness are brushed aside and the spectacular fiasco of Talin is dealt with in limited and inconclusive fashion. This was an intolerable and spectacular fiasco that did not satisfy. Spock and McCoy come across as dicks and Kirk is a sainted martyr.
“Not with the starboard warp-propulsion nacelle completely gone - the one that Spock had managed to jettison in time. Unlike the port nacelle.”
“He had even punched Vice Admiral Hammersmith in front of witnesses at Starbase 29.”
“Banished from the service without incident, without trial, and without record.”
“We came in peace for all mankind.”
“Because they called us word killers,”
“Within five days Talin IV was a graveyard for an entire civilization.”