Captain Pike beams aboard the Discovery in the show’s sophomore season.
Photo: CBS

The rapidly approaching second season of Discovery will re-introduce us to the U.S.S. Enterprise, before Jim Kirk ever sat in its Captain’s chair and boldly took it on its five year mission. But later this year, a new novel will show us what the ship was actually up to at the height of the Klingon War that broke out in Discovery season one.

Star Trek and Star Wars novelist John Jackson Miller confirmed on Twitter late last night that he will write The Enterprise War, the next Discovery novel set for release on July 30. As the name suggests, the novel will follow the crew of the starship Enterprise—featuring Captain Pike, Spock, and Number One, as they appear in Discovery’s sophomore season—as they wrangle with the breakout of war between the Federation and the Klingon Empire.

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It would be fascinating to see how the nightmare of the war took its toll on Spock, Pike, and the crew—especially as Anson Mount, who plays Pike in Discovery’s second season, has noted that the idealistic Captain’s firm belief in the ideals of Starfleet makes him an interesting foil to the jaded, war-damaged assholery of season one’s Captain Lorca. But don’t get too excited to see Pike’s Enterprise go into battle with the Klingon’s finest. A newly released synopsis for The Enterprise War seems to imply that what the Enterprise was actually up to during the war was...being stuck in an altogether unrelated war?

Hearing of the outbreak of hostilities between the United Federation of Planets and the Klingon Empire, Captain Christopher Pike attempts to bring the U.S.S. Enterprise home to join in the fight. But in the hellish nebula known as the Pergamum, the stalwart commander instead finds an epic battle of his own, pitting ancient enemies against one another—with not just the Enterprise, but her crew as the spoils of war.

Lost and out of contact with Earth for an entire year, Pike and his trusted first officer, Number One, struggle to find and reunite the ship’s crew—all while Science Officer Spock confronts a mystery that puts even his exceptional skills to the test…with more than their own survival possibly riding on the outcome….

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Interstellar war’s like a bus, apparently. You spend ages waiting for one, and then two come along at once!

It’s understandable to keep the Enterprise out of the moral murkiness of Discovery’s first season—you get to avoid any of that grime staining the squeaky-clean embodiment of Trek’s pioneering, idealistic spirit. But it’s still a bit of a bummer to not have a man like Pike really be challenged by the moral dilemma of the Federation at war through the excuse of “well, see, there was this other war between other people and they got caught up in that for a year!” We’ll have to wait until The Enterprise War releases this July to find out more.


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