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Typhon Pact

j3067

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POSTS: 192

Report this Mar. 19 2011, 1:50 pm

David has certainly been a trooper with us nay-sayers and he certainly deserves kudos for that.


What I got from my correspondence here is that he did it for Kassidy and Rebecca's happiness, not his own.  Also that even if the house fire, his father dying, and the other bummers have nothing to do with him, he is still interpreting it that way.  Because of this he thinks he has to tuck tail or Kassidy and Rebecca are next.


It does not work for me, but from what I have gathered that is the way we were supposed to have read it.  It suffices for a seeming majority as convincing motivation that Ben would bail.


And I did not mean equivocate to ascribe a motive. I used it, incorrectly perhaps, to describe what seemed to me to be a logical fallacy but not necessarily an intentional one.  If I questioned the author's motives I personally would have used the word sophistry.  

eric.teall

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Report this Mar. 19 2011, 2:05 pm

Oh, I completely understood that he interpreted the fires, the deaths, etc. as having something to do with him.  I just don't see how a rational person could believe that for an instant.  It would have made so much more sense to me if Kassidy had been injured by a throng of people trying to see the returned Emissary or something like that.  At least then Sisko could reasonably think, "if I hadn't been here, she wouldn't have been hurt!"


Ultimately, though, I really feel that the status quos that have been set up for many of the characters are actually less interesting than they were in the past.  And killing Vaughn essentially off-camera bugs me, too.  Why couldn't we have gotten a genuine "transition" novel to go from the DS9 reboot to the post-Destiny world? 

CO_Fowler

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Report this Mar. 19 2011, 2:22 pm

^^  See, that's my take on it.  Sisko isn't thinking like a rational person.  At least not right now.  Even though he thinks he is being rational and trying to rationalize that he has to leave Kas, Rebecca and Jake to keep them safe and alive.


Will Sisko 'wake up and smell the coffee' soon?  I don't know.  Will he do it eventually?  Again, I don't know.  But somehow in Sisko's mind, he is being quite rational.  That's how I see it and read it.  I may be wrong, but that was my take.


As soon as I get the other ones read, then I'll be able to speak on them, but so far RBofE is the only Typhon Pact book I've read.


R.I.P. My sweet Casey Bug. Mommy will see you again one day :`o( 18DEC01-24SEP11 / "Don't try to win over the haters. You're not the jackass whisperer."~Scott Stratten /It's a lot like nuts and bolts-if the rider's nuts, the horse bolts! ~Nicholas Evans /IDIC-Infinite Diversity Infinite Combination/Sgt Esterhaus: Hey, let's be careful out there!/4000/ To succeed in life, you need three things: a wishbone, a backbone and a funnybone

Dendodge

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Report this Mar. 19 2011, 5:29 pm

Uh, David, that post looks a little . . . broken


eric.teall

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Report this Mar. 19 2011, 6:01 pm

If Sisko's lack of rational thinking is a plot point that will be reversed/resolved within six months real time (as opposed to in-book time), then I'll get over it.  However, I get the very strong feeling that this isn't considered a "mistake" on Sisko's part by the ST-Novels establishment.  Boy, I hope I'm wrong.

j3067

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POSTS: 192

Report this Mar. 19 2011, 9:27 pm

Quote: eric.teall @ Mar. 19 2011, 6:01 pm

>

>If Sisko's lack of rational thinking is a plot point that will be reversed/resolved within six months real time (as opposed to in-book time), then I'll get over it.  However, I get the very strong feeling that this isn't considered a "mistake" on Sisko's part by the ST-Novels establishment.  Boy, I hope I'm wrong.

>


 


Agree a Billion percent.

eric.teall

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POSTS: 7

Report this Mar. 19 2011, 9:38 pm

Oh, well.  I enjoyed the DS9 relaunch and Destiny very much.  I guess all good things..., right?

j3067

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POSTS: 192

Report this Mar. 19 2011, 10:40 pm

I figure staying vocal and posting a review at your point of sale cant hurt.

DavidRGeorgeIII

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Report this Mar. 20 2011, 12:55 am

-- I'd like to second (third? fourth?) the sincere thanks to you for stopping by and discussing your work. --

I enjoy interacting with readers, so I'm happy to do it. And I'm a Star Trek fan too, of course.


-- I am one who has been (and will continue to be) very critical of RBofE, but I hope my review and comments on Amazon and ST.com have not seemed personal to you. --

I don't know what you wrote on Amazon, so I have no idea if it was personal. But I have no problem with you being critical of Rough Beasts of Empire.


-- FWIW, while I can completely see your point on "equivocating" and "cop-out," I didn't originally see those as "personal" attacks.  While I can't speak for other posters, I am not sure that someone who isn't a professional wordsmith chooses his words as carefully as one who is. --

Well, I can only go by what people post. Somebody who says that I am equivocating in what I post here, or that I am copping out, is falsely ascribing motivations to me. It's certainly possible that such a person uses those words imprecisely, but I can't know that. But short of personal affronts such as that, I'm fine with discussing my work.

-- Finally, I'd like to comment on Sisko's interpretation of the Prophets' "prophecy."  I completely understand what you mean when you explain that the Prophets are not "predicting," they are actually "reporting."  They're non-linear.  That makes sense.  What bothers me is that the "sorrow" that Sisko and his family were experiencing didn't seem to have anything to do with SISKO. --

Though it might not seem to have anything to do with Sisko, that it did not appear as cause and effect, does not mean it does not have anything to do with Sisko, or that there is no cause and effect. Off the top of my head, consider the episode "Tears of the Prophets." In it, the Prophets essentially warn Sisko not to leave the Bajoran system to attack the Dominion forces at Chin'toka, that it's too dangerous for him to do so. Sisko goes anyway, and Jadzia Dax is killed back on DS9. Sisko later suggests that he should have heeded the Prophets, that perhaps Jadzia would not have been killed otherwise. This also seems a stretch. Jadzia was in the Bajoran temple, the possessed Dukat transported in and killed her, then beamed out. If Sisko had stayed behind, would he have been in the temple at that moment? Maybe, but it still seems a stretch to me.

Also, you can make all sorts of suppositions about how events are tied to Sisko. His married friends, Eivos Calan and Eivos Audj, died in a house fire. Perhaps if Sisko hadn't chosen to spend his life with Kasidy, Sisko wouldn't have befriended a married couple so readily. Or perhaps he would have decided not to stay on Bajor. Or perhaps he wouldn't have stayed home with Kasidy that night, and instead would have visited his friends and ended up preventing the fire. It's possible to come up with countless scenarios of cause and effect.

At the same time, I would suggest that it doesn't matter. In the course of the television series, the Prophets told Sisko many things, and they continued to pan out. Therefore, when they tell him something, he believes it. Sometimes, he did what the Prophets instructed, and other times he didn't. When he did, things worked out; when he didn't, he paid a price. So in Rough Beasts,  he has long ago concluded that the Prophets told him the truth. And what they told him was that if he spent his life with Kasidy, he would know nothing but sorrow. When the people closest to him begin to die in a short period, it hardly seems a leap to think that might well be the sorrow of which the Prophets spoke.

-- It's not as though any of the events had an ounce of anything to do with him, personally.  Because of this, there doesn't seem a compelling reason for him to suddenly decide that leaving his family will protect them.  While his running away might help HIM avoid the sorrow, it doesn't seem to provide any rational basis for believing that his running away will help Kas and the baby to avoid the sorrow.  It also doesn't create a reason to believe that the sorrowful events will cease because he is gone. --

Yes, by abandoning Kasidy, Sisko is attempting to avoid knowing "nothing but sorrow." But Sisko is not interested in avoiding his own sorrow; he is interested specifically in avoiding something bad happening to Kasidy and Rebecca. Because his greatest sorrow would be for them to die, he believes that if he stays with Kasidy, that will eventually happen. Since the Prophets told him that if he spends his life with Kasidy, he will no nothing but sorrow, the logical equivalent is that he will not know nothing but sorrow if he does not spend his life with Kasidy. By leaving her, he is thus not spending his life with her, and he therefore hopes that will break the cycle of sorrow
.

-- Instead, Sisko's decision smacks of running away when the going gets tough.  This isn't a strategic retreat.  It's not the removal of a cause of suffering.  It just seems to be cowardice, and while Sisko was never perfect, I don't ever recall him being a coward, and that's my problem with what happened in the book. --

Well, I don't agree that Sisko is running away when the going gets tough. He thinks if he stays, Kasidy and Rebecca will die. But here's an interesting observation: Sisko ran away during the course of the television series. After Starfleet retook the Chin'toka system, after Jadzia died, he not only left the station with no clear intention of returning, he did so without even saying good-bye to Kasidy. That's canon; that's what happened in the show. I really don't believe that Sisko is acting out of cowardice in Rough Beasts, but what the heck was he doing in "Tears of the Prophets
?"

-- I say all of the above only for the sake of clarification of why I have been so down on the book. --

I get it. Believe me, I understood—as a fan myself of Deep Space Nine and Benjamin Sisko—that this path for the character would be a challenge to write for me, and a challenge for some to read. But I like challeng
es.

-- Overall, I have to say also that, after all four books, I am less interested in the Typhon Pact storyline than I was six months ago.  While I will probably buy the next in-continuity book, I will not "rush" to do so and will probably wait until the summer (as I'm a teacher). --

Well, if I write another entry in the series, I hope I can win you back.


Regards, David

DavidRGeorgeIII

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Report this Mar. 20 2011, 1:06 am

Please forgive the multiple posts, but when I attempted a longer, inclusive post, the system got squirrelly on me.

-- David has certainly been a trooper with us nay-sayers and he certainly deserves kudos for that. --

Thanks, but it's really no big deal.


-- What I got from my correspondence here is that he did it for Kassidy and Rebecca's happiness, not his own.  Also that even if the house fire, his father dying, and the other bummers have nothing to do with him, he is still interpreting that way.  Because of this he thinks he has to tuck tail or Kassidy and Rebecca are next. --

I would quibble slightly with this. I would say that Sisko took the actions he did not for Kasidy and Rebecca's happiness, but for their very lives. And yes, even if he doesn't see a direct cause-and-effect connection between his marriage to Kasidy and the tragic events, the Prophets essentially told him that those connections existed, and so he believes them.

-- It does not work for me, but from what I have gathered that is the way we were supposed to have read it.  It suffices for a seeming majority as convincing motivation that Ben would bail. --

It's possible that I failed in my job as a writer to convince you, or perhaps that you didn't read or interpret things as you might have, but it's just also possible that I wrote a good book that you didn't like. And perhaps one reason some people accept the notion of Sisko bailing is because he actually did so in the series itself. Although, again, I don't feel Sisko is bailing, but is taking direct action to save his family.

-- And I did not mean equivocate to ascribe a motive. I used it, incorrectly perhaps, to describe what seemed to me to be a logical fallacy but not necessarily an intentional one.  If I questioned the author's motives I personally would have used the word sophistry. --

I accept that you did not mean to ascribe a motive to me, so we're cool.


Regards, David

DavidRGeorgeIII

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POSTS: 31

Report this Mar. 20 2011, 1:07 am

Again, please forgive the multiple posts, but when I attempted a longer, inclusive post, the system got squirrelly on me.

-- Oh, I completely understood that he interpreted the fires, the deaths, etc. as having something to do with him.  I just don't see how a rational person could believe that for an instant.

My guess here is that you are not taking into consideration Sisko's experiences. In his life, the Prophets told him many things, and they all more or less proved to be true. They led him to a buried city lost for millennia. They inserted him into a story that took place in the 1950's. They showed him a cloud of locusts to ensure that he would prevent Bajor from entering the Federation. They obliterated 2,800 Dominion starships in an instant at his request. They saved him from dying when he fell from a cliff into a burning abyss. They brought him to live in the Celestial Temple for eight months, then returned him to Bajor. Why wouldn't he believe them now?

-- It would have made so much more sense to me if Kassidy had been injured by a throng of people trying to see the returned Emissary or something like that.  At least then Sisko could reasonably think, "if I hadn't been here, she wouldn't have been hurt!"

Too obvious, and not at all in keeping with the cryptic Prophets.

-- Ultimately, though, I really feel that the status quos that have been set up for many of the characters are actually less interesting than they were in the past.  And killing Vaughn essentially off-camera bugs me, too.  Why couldn't we have gotten a genuine "transition" novel to go from the DS9 reboot to the post-Destiny world? --

Vaughn's not quite dead, and he suffers his injury "on-camera."

As for the choice of a "transition" novel, I was invited to pen a Typhon Pact novel, in the time period of 2381-2383. I was not given a choice of writing a novel such as the one you mention.
 


Regards, David

DavidRGeorgeIII

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POSTS: 31

Report this Mar. 20 2011, 1:09 am

Final multiple post here.

-- See, that's my take on it.  Sisko isn't thinking like a rational person.  At least not right now.  Even though he thinks he is being rational and trying to rationalize that he has to leave Kas, Rebecca and Jake to keep them safe and alive. --

Yes, this!

-- Will Sisko 'wake up and smell the coffee' soon?  I don't know.  Will he do it eventually?  Again, I don't know.  But somehow in Sisko's mind, he is being quite rational.  That's how I see it and read it.  I may be wrong, but that was my take. --

Stay tuned.


Regards, David

eric.teall

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Report this Mar. 20 2011, 6:17 am

Thanks again for all the responses.  I really appreciate it.  At the same time, you might want to consider getting some sleep!  :-)

DavidRGeorgeIII

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Report this Mar. 20 2011, 11:54 am

^ What is this "sleep" of which you speak?


Regards, David

j3067

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Report this Mar. 20 2011, 4:20 pm

Another thing that keeps this from coming together for me is that the worm-hole aliens/prophets have shown that they can be successfully petitioned for intercession and have the means to alter the course of linear events.  What I am recalling is the same episode you mentioned in which Wormhole Aliens make the Jem'Hedar fleet go 'poof'.  To do this they require a penance (no peace on Bajor/no promised land for Moses). Part of Sisko's reasoning in the book, as I read it, is founded on the assumption that the prophets are only observers.


 


I am not adverse to challenges either.  I wrote a paper in college where I proposed that Cordelia and Kent were the more tragic figures in King Lear and that Lear was a knucklehead from act 1 scene 1.  I later found out I was not the first person to make this observation once interweb access became more common.  Still, the professor acted like I shot her dog and I think she may have preferred that I did.

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