Let’s be honest. If you are thinking of buying this book, it’s because you are already a big Star Trek fan (or at least a Picard/Next Gen fan). You are probably interested in buying it because you are a Trek/Picard fan, or you’re thinking of it as a gift for a Trek fan. In any case, a review is not likely to sway you one way or the other.
This book is filled with quotes, spoken by Captain Jean-Luc Picard in any of his television or film appearances. Well … not filled with quotes exactly. More like – there is a smattering of quotes within. Sometimes there may be two quotes on a page. But that almost makes up for the pages of photos rather than quotes.
At best this is a coffee-table type of book. It’s something you leave out so that guests know you’re a Star Trek fan and that they can thumb through while you’re getting drinks or chips.
At less than best, it’s a bathroom reader. Something that you won’t get too involved in and that you can put away easily. The only problem with this as a bathroom reader is that it won’t tide you over very long because there’s not much to this book.
I love quotes – pearls of wisdom in a simple statement or sentence. I collect quotes (I’ve shared a few through my blog) and I have picked up more than a few books of quotes and honestly, I was hoping for something here that was either essay-like, taking a look at the Wisdom of Picard, or, if going with the quote idea, a heftier collection categorized by type.
To be fair, editor Chip Carter does give us five ‘chapters’ with specific themes to the included quotes. We have Philosophy and Humanity; History and Science; Literature and the Arts; Exploration and Adventure; and Politics, Leadership, and Diplomacy. The chapters have between 26 and 35 quotes each, and a small handful of photos.
Aside from the sparseness of the book, I was a bit disappointed that while Carter gives credit to the episode in which the quote was delivered (and the season and episode number of the show, he doesn’t give any credit to the writers … the people who put that wisdom into Picard’s mouth! (I know I could look it up pretty easily, but in that case I could just watch the episodes and not bother picking up this book, too.
To say I was disappointed would be putting in gently. This feels like just another attempt to make a buck off of Star Trek fans who will often buy things just because it says “Star Trek” or “Picard” on it. I’d rather save my money for a replica phaser.
Looking for a good book? The Wisdom of Picard, edited by Chip Carter, is a wise way to relieve some Trek fans of their money.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.
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The Wisdom of Picard: An Official Star Trek Collection
editor: Chip Carter
publisher: Adams Media
hardcover, 208 pages