Thursday 11 January 2024

Star Trek: Strange New Worlds: The High Country - John Jackson Miller

Title: The High Country
Author: John Jackson Miller
Published: 2023
Chronological Period: 2259

Available at:

"The High Country" by John Jackson Miller is the first tie-in novel for the Star Trek: Strange New Worlds that first aired in 2022. This book primarily follows Pike, Una, Spock, and Uhura who all manage to get stranded on a planet where technology is severely inhibited. All four of them find themselves in rather different places, Pike is stuck in Wild West sort of town, Una finds herself in a forest area, Spock appears in the middle of an ocean and Uhura is transported into a field of lava. The story itself revolves around them all learning about the circumstances of the planet and trying to escape whilst keeping in mind the Prime Directive.

Firstly, I have to say the the author does a good job of presenting the crew in a manner which was recognisable from how they appeared on the series. If I had to be picky about the characters  then it was because they kept being referred to by multiple different names. For example, Number One is also called Una, Una Chin-Riley or just Chin-Riley throughout the novel which can slow you down as your mind catches up and remembers that is the same person. I appreciate, they are all acceptable names but I wish we could just stick with one.

The plot itself is pretty long and complicated, but is on the whole engaging and entertaining with some throwbacks to previous Star Trek incidents, including a core plot point linking back to Star Trek: Enterprise which was nice to see. The editing process for the book could have maybe removed some of the fat to tighten up the overall pacing but I rarely found myself getting bored to the point I wanted to put the book down.

Overall, an entertaining first novel for Strange New Worlds and I look forward to seeing what the next one with entail. Miller gets a lot of things right with the book, the characters feel right, the plot is interesting and the links into the wider continuity are nice to see. If you are fan of the series then I recommend that you go pick it up.