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Real World article
(written from a Production point of view)

Desperate Hours is a Pocket DIS novel – the first novel in the series – written by David Mack. Published by Pocket Books, it was first released in trade paperback in September 2017, in conjunction with the first season of Star Trek: Discovery.

Summary Edit

From the book jacket
Aboard the Starship Shenzhou, Lieutenant Michael Burnham, a human woman raised and educated among Vulcans, is promoted to acting first officer. But if she wants to keep the job, she must prove to Captain Philippa Georgiou that she deserves to have it.
She gets her chance when the Shenzhou must protect a Federation colony that is under attack by an ancient alien vessel that has surfaced from the deepest fathoms of the planet's dark, uncharted sea.
As the menace from this mysterious vessel grows stronger, Starfleet declares the colony expendable in the name of halting the threat. To save thousands of innocent lives, Burnham must infiltrate the alien ship. But to do so she needs to face the truth of her troubled past, and seek the aid of a man she has tried to avoid her entire life – until now.

Excerpts of copyrighted sources are included for review purposes only, without any intention of infringement.

Background information Edit

  • The novel was released in trade paperback, eBook, and audiobook formats.
  • The novel's cover and synopsis were revealed at the Star Trek Las Vegas convention on 2 August 2017. [1]
  • The novel takes place exactly a year prior to Discovery's first episode, "The Vulcan Hello", [2] on May 11-12, 2255. [3]
  • Bryan Fuller requested that this novel consist of a crossover between the crews of the Shenzhou and Captain Pike's Enterprise. Mack "addressed the difference in the ships' aesthetics to a human tendency to want to redesign even the simplest things every few years." The differences in technology were also explained: "I posited that the use of subspace holograms had fallen out of favor by the time the Enterprise was built because the holograms were bandwidth hogs on subspace channels and prone to encryption flaws. And while the interfaces on the Shenzhou's bridge look fancier, the characters who serve on the Enterprise feel proud that their ship is so advanced that it doesn’t need all these gadgets to get the job done." Regarding uniforms, "the crews of the Enterprise and other Constitution-class ships are considered elite units, so they’ve been issued special "diplomatic" uniforms to designate their status." [4]

Cover gallery Edit

External link Edit


Previous novel: Series Next novel:
First novel in series Pocket DIS Drastic Measures (February 2018)

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