The Left Hand of Destiny Book One by J.G. Hertzler and Jeffery Lang was a fantastic book if you love Klingons. The book is well balanced between action, plot, and character depth.
I’m unapologetic lover of Klingons. When I went to the Vancouver Star Trek Convention, the thing I was looking forward to the Breakfast with the Klingons the most. While on the outside I was all calm, on the inside the little girl in me would have thrown my autograph book on my head with glee just as my sister did when she met Mickey at a Breakfast with the Disney Characters on her first trip to Walt Disney World. It was my chance to meet J.G. Hertzler (General Martok) and Robert O’Reilly (Chancellor Gowron). They were so much fun. They were in character and out of character. My photo with them is one of my favorite photos to look at on a bad day (the other ones include when my friend and I went to a Flyers game together and one with my dad when we went to NYC). So I was excited to see that J.G. Hertzler had a couple books on my eReader when I was recently going through the library. I knew right then and there I would have to read them quickly. Admittedly, I had somewhat low expectations on J.G.’s ability to write a book. I just didn’t know what to expect since he’s an actor but I was so pleased by what I read. It really showed me how much he really knew his character on the show. Plus what added was magnificent.
In a nutshell, the book is about how General Martok had to deal with the biggest struggle of ruling the Klingon Empire. Sorry it’s the title I have for him, I know it’s Chancellor Martok since Worf killed Gowron and passed the power on to Martok prior to the book starting (since this book starts right after the last episode of DS9). Old habits die hard and besides the general is still struggling with the transition from general to Chancellor. On the day of the big ceremony really giving power to the General as Chancellor of the Klingon Empire, Morjod attacked the Great Hall and usurped the position. Plus to make matters worse, Morjod takes Sirella hostage and threatens public execution of her. So Martok is lead by not only a desire to save his own honor, he wants to save his wife.
Great themes and action in the book. I didn’t want to put it down at times. Like the Hunger Games, it’s plot driven. Plus this had a hint of a Arthurian legend to it. I love the grandeur of Klingon honor, the presence of a madwoman who has vast amounts of power (possibly mystical power), and saga itself.
But the thing that really stood out, was how well JG really knows the Klingon characters he put into the book. I got to hear the voices perfectly and even could envision every act. I loved how he expounded on Sirella’s character. You can see why Martok gets that little gleam in his eye when talking about Sirella in passing on DS9. Plus he even got Alexander right. That’s a difficult Klingon to work with when you compare the small boy from TNG to the awkward Klingon soldier that showed up on DS9. He nailed Martok. But when you portray that character in 27 episodes and then decide to write a book about the same character, that should be a given. I relished how the reader got to see the relationship between Martok and Worf where you got to see the little things that would annoy the General and yet he admired his brother.
The one thing that drove me nuts was the ending. It was so good and I was so enthralled and then it ended with a cliff hanger. I hate cliff hangers. So much so, if I know a show like DS9, Eureka or Doctor Who has one, I will just wait for the second episode to air and just watch the two episodes together. Thankfully, I have book two on my eReader. So unlike with The Hunger Games books, I don’t have to wait a night to get my next fix.
I really enjoyed The Left Hand of Destiny Book One. It grew my esteem of my one of my favorite Klingons and of JG. Hertzler. I’m so glad I got to read this book. Now off to read a little bit of book two and then get some rest before the next day of work.