Fantasy and Science Fiction Wednesday would not be complete without at least one reference to Star Trek. Star Trek revolutionized the science fiction world, inspired countless designs of technologies (including Google Earth!), and earned an incredibly loyal fan base. The show also crossed a social frontier: The kiss between Captain Kirk and Lieutenant Uhura is believed to be the first scripted interracial kiss in American television history. But of all the cultural icons spawned on the USS Enterprise, the biggest was the show’s breakout star: William Shatner as Kirk.
Since the original Star Trek series aired in the 1960s, Shatner has undertaken several new missions. His other television adventures include Emmy-winning roles on The Practice and Boston Legal. He has also done a Broadway show, created an iPhone app, appeared in documentaries and feature films, recorded albums, and done extensive work with charities. He also breeds and shows horses.
What we are most excited about, however, are his books. Shatner also writes novels, starting with TekWar in 1989. This became a series set in twenty-second-century Los Angeles, starring private detective Jake Cardigan. Not satisfied with the thrills of being of the city’s toughest cop, Cardigan turns to Tek, a synthetic stimulant that transports the user to any reality he can imagine. He’s quickly hooked, accused of dealing, and lands in jail—in this world, suspended animation. After just a few years his sentence is mysteriously commuted, and he wakes to find his wife and daughter gone. Combining sci-fi with a detective tale, TekWar follows Cardigan’s battle against the TekCartels and the drug itself, while he searches for his missing family. The novels are highly entertaining, fast-paced, and a fun guilty pleasure for Sunday afternoon reading.
The TekWar series was later turned into a TV show, a video game, and graphic novels. But you know what they say—the book is always better. Go here to learn more about William Shatner and his books.