Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Best Destiny (Star Trek)” as Want to Read:
Best Destiny (Star Trek)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Best Destiny (Star Trek: The Original Series)

3.84  ·  Rating Details ·  1,402 Ratings  ·  46 Reviews
As James T. Kirk prepares to retire from a long and illustrious Starfleet career, events in a distant part of the Federation draw him back to a part of the galaxy he had last visited as a young man, a mysterious world called Faramond whose name takes Kirk on a journey back to his youth.

At sixteen, Kirk is troubled, estranged from his father, and has a bleak future. However
Hardcover, 398 pages
Published November 1st 1992 by Pocket Books (first published 1992)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Best Destiny, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Best Destiny

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Jun 22, 2016 Sud666 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
Best Destiny is the story of the development of two men. The story starts 45 years before the events of ST VI: Undiscovered Country. A 16 year old, rebellious, trouble-making and downright snotty "Jimmy" Kirk runs away from home to get aboard a ship in order to be a deckhand. Promptly "recovered" by his father, a Starfleet Security officer. Deciding to teach his troublesome son some lessons he and Captain April take Jimmy on a routine exploration mission. Of course nothing is routine about this ...more
Nov 06, 2008 Eric rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: to Trek Fans
This book is a must read before the next Trek movie.
Matthew Rushing
Nov 20, 2016 Matthew Rushing rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, 2016
3 1/5 Like the story, writing style was not my favorite.
Mike Crate
Feb 04, 2017 Mike Crate rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi, star-trek
Best Destiny turns back the clock and sheds some non-canon light on the teenage years of one James Kirk, the story covers two separate timeframes with the first as James as a rebellious teenager and the other as a Captain looking at the end of one career. The focal point is the planet Faramond and the events that surrounded the discovery of a race vastly more technically advanced that the Federation and who seem to have as a species packed their bags and vanished into history.

Commander George Ki
Jul 03, 2013 Neil rated it liked it
Love this quote [statement] [so far] on page 74 by James T. Kirk: "I was too busy finding out I wasn't perfect."

final thots:

I actually enjoyed this book the second time around. I remember reading it when it first came out and not liking it very much. I bought it cheap recently and re-read it. It had a decent flow to it. Almost a 'sequel' to 'Final Frontier' in that it brings back characters introduced in that book. It also takes place after 'Star Trek VI: Undiscovered Country'. It has a decent f
David King
Apr 11, 2012 David King rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“Best Destiny” by Diane Carey is more or less a sequel to “Final Frontier”, another of Carey’s novels which I previously read. Whilst there is a basic framing story based around an attempt to rescue another Starfleet ship by the soon to be retired James T. Kirk, the main portion of the story follows the antics of a young 16 year old Jimmy Kirk. As a teenager Kirk has a lot of pent up anger against his father and seems destined to for a life of gangs and crime. However, Kirk’s father decides to m ...more
Glen Stripling
Aug 12, 2014 Glen Stripling rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As a Trekie, I have wondered how James T. Kirk came to be the commander of the USS Enterprise. As a sci-fi writer I have longed for a tale that shows how a series of events could transform a futuristic Huck Finn into the disciplined responsible character I grew up watching on TV.

That was why I had to get my hands on the novel BEST DESTINY, (Pocket Books) by Diane Carey that describes Kirk's early life. Carey's novel is the story of George and Winona Kirk and their frustrating battle to save thei
Apr 03, 2015 Charles rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Like so many of the greatest commanders in history, James T. Kirk was a rebellious teenager, driving his Star Fleet father George Kirk to the brink of frustrated parental defeat. In his first attempt to show his son what Star Fleet was all about, Jimmy Kirk experienced the brutality of Kodos’ own brand of survival techniques. When Jimmy leads his gang in an attempt to run away on an ocean ship, George tries one last time to alter his son’s life course.
Although the mission is designed to be a
Jun 14, 2016 LemmiSchmoeker rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Okay, I'm sorry. I've tried, but I couldn't even bring myself to read more than thirty pages of this drivel. The psychological depth could maybe impress a very dim twelve-year-old. The dialogue seems to have been rewritten over and over again until it has become pure creative writing: there is now nothing but conflict.

The worst part is that Carey (and apparently Gregory Brodeur, who credits himself as a co-author in the foreword) try so hard to be brooding and foreboding in every other paragraph
Brian Lewis
I really didn't like the book to begin with. The characters were highly exaggerated, stereotypical teenagers that cause grief to everyone around them for the sole purpose of doing so. I felt that Star Trek was suppose to be a divergence from our current culture, however, the book read far too much as a modern day juvenile fiction novel. Another issue I had with the book was the propensity of invented words and flowery descriptions. I don't mind technical jargon, especially in a sci-fi novel, how ...more
Yet another Star Trek audio book, this one read by James Doohan who of course does a wonderful job. I have found out that this one if not most of these are abridged which is very frustrating.

This one was both good and incredibly frustrating. It jumped right into a story about teenage Jim Kirk and how he came to love Star Fleet, but there wasn't much context and it seemed to rush along. I'm blaming the abridged parts for that. What was there, story wise, was very good. Kirk is, as his dad says "a
Matt R. R.
Dec 19, 2011 Matt R. R. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another excellent read from Diane Carey... I really enjoy the "old-school navy" and "intrepid explorer" vibes she throws into her work. It makes Starfleet seem all the more grounded in reality and understandable ideals, as well as truly presenting a future where humanity's moved past so many of its current problems and built a grander destiny for itself.

Her understanding of the James T. Kirk is impeccable, and with Best Destiny, she deftly handles the adventures of a teenage Kirk and the seasone
Sean Wicks
Back when I was a tween and teen, I read every Star Trek book I could get my hands on. I grew out of them, but as I was packing recently I came across this title that was given to me back in the early 1990s as a Christmas gift. I will never not read or use something that someone has given me, so before I pass it on I gave it a read.

It took me a while because I wasn't all that excited about it, and it was a continuation of sorts of another Star Trek book I read back in the 1980s called Final Fro
M. David Loyal
Oct 08, 2012 M. David Loyal rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
While I was visiting my brother-in-law, he suggested and then lent me a Star Trek book – Best Destiny. Best Destiny follows James T. Kirk’s first time in outer space. He is 16 years old and absolutely filled with teenage angst. He is furious with his father, who is a Star Fleet security officer and is very much absent from Jimmy’s day-to-day life. Jimmy is taken up to the Star Ship Enterprise, captained by Robert April, and of course, something goes wrong, and they meet some pirates who also hav ...more
Lisa (Harmonybites)
This is one of my favorite Star Trek novels, particularly for its focus on my favorite Star Trek Character, James T. Kirk as a teen, and his relationship with his father. It's a good extrapolation of what the young Kirk might have been like--the flaws and virtues that came out in the man and leader, often flip sides of the same quality. (“Jimmy,” he asked, “when is it going to dawn on you that rules exist for a reason?" Lines said after an incident that would definitely hammer down the lesson. Y ...more
Jun 23, 2009 Amy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
After watching the new Star Trek movie that shows Kirk's parallel-universe beginnings, I wanted to read this book. Parts of Kirk's childhood in the new movie were based off of it, plus I was just curious to find out more about Kirk as a youngster since I hadn't liked his character much until the new movie.

Well, I enjoyed the meat of the book: an exciting action plot that brings Kirk from hoodlum to young man. Lots of father-son themes going on in there, and learning more about Kirk's dad helped
Daniel Kukwa
Jan 28, 2011 Daniel Kukwa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: star-trek
There are moments where this book dives off the deep end of sentimentalism...but only moments...which leaves 85% of the novel to be brilliant. This is a superb & exacting look at a young James Kirk, and the inner demons & conflicts that drove him to become such a legendary starship Captain. Ironically, its details fit in surprisingly well with the new time-line started by the 2009 Trek film...which only enhances both the character and Diane Carey's skill. This book is miles away from the ...more
Anja Braun
Before the movie there was Best Destiny. The story about how Jimmy Kirk became James T. Kirk, The captain of the Enterprise. Kirk's retirement is looming & the enterprise is being replaced by a newer stlye of starship. Uhura picks up a distress call & a place from Kirk's past makes him remember his teenage years. I like the movie's rendition of him better than the book but for what it is it's still good.

"Parents don't last forever, Good or bad.---Comes a time when there is no excuse. Po
Jun 03, 2015 Crystal rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sci-fi
This was a really enjoyable read! I had never thought of young Kirk as a delinquent (usually figured he would be an Eagle Scout, straight A's, football quarterback, you get the idea) but apparently J.J. Abrams did in his ST reboot as well. This one is action-packed, maybe a bit slow to get started but once you get through the first couple of chapters, it's a roller-coaster.
Stephen Fender
Apr 04, 2013 Stephen Fender rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Listened to the audio version before I read the book some years later: big mistake. Book is 10x better. The author got the "old" kirk down perfectly, and "young" Kirk was beautifully crafted. The characters and plot were fantastic, and I was drawn into wanting to learn more about the supporting cast. It was riviting and exciting. Well done.
Sep 19, 2016 Claude rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This was a re-read for me as I originally read this book in high school. I honestly didn't care for it, and it took a second reading to remind me of how I originally felt. I skipped the flashbacks to Kirk's childhood as I couldn't stand to read about teen angst, and I felt the writing didn't hold true to the characters.
Jul 24, 2015 Michael rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: star-trek, audiobooks
I enjoyed listening to this Star Trek Novel as an audio book. It was good to see a bit more of Kirk's early life. Touched upon on one of the newer films with Kirk being a trouble maker and having a wild youth it was nice to see the relationship he had with his farther.

I would recommend this book to any fan of Star Trek!!
Dec 26, 2008 Mike rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi
This book was quite entertaining, a definite must read before the new movie. It would be better suited to teenagers I think, as I am now 24 and my taste has matured (usually). I wasn't what I would call a 'page turner,' nor was it difficult to get through. It was just...entertaining.
John Chevalier
Jan 17, 2015 John Chevalier rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This gives a great backstory on how Captain Kirk learned that he wanted to go to Starfleet. The ending was a little too quick, I believe that this could have been better developed. Still a very good book and one that I couldn't put down.
Cary Spratt
Mar 11, 2013 Cary Spratt rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned, star-trek
This book made me realize I needed to reorganize my Star Trek shelf. I had been reading them in chronological order based on the latest stardate within each book, but I *really* should have read this one after 'Final Frontier' (also by Diane Carey). Oh well, there's always next time.
Mary JL
Nov 23, 2008 Mary JL rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Star Trek fans only
For the die hard Star Trek fan, they might rate it higher. I read it and found nothing too bad about it--but nothing exceptional either. Especially, I find the relatively quick change is Kirk;s character a bit hard to swallow.
Michael T Bradley
Dec 29, 2015 Michael T Bradley rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Whoops, this is another flashback story about Kirk's dad & his admiral buddy or whatever, only this time including Teen Kirk. Not interested.
Jason Cross
Feb 05, 2013 Jason Cross rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book. We get to see what Kirk would have been like as a child and how he grew to be the legend!
Feb 05, 2013 Samuel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Probably Diane Carey's best ST book.
Shaun Hately
Dec 21, 2014 Shaun Hately rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Star Trek novels are very hit and miss - some are good, some are not. This one, which sets out to show James T. Kirk in his mid teens is one of the very best I have read.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Shadows on the Sun
  • Sarek
  • Federation
  • Strangers from the Sky
  • The Lost Years (Star Trek: The Lost Years, #1)
  • Vulcan's Forge
  • The Tears of the Singers
  • Enterprise: The First Adventure
  • Spock's World
  • The Rift
  • Uhura's Song
  • Deep Domain
  • Rules of Engagement
  • Dreams of the Raven (Star Trek #34)
  • The Ashes of Eden (Star Trek: Odyssey, #1)
  • The Price of the Phoenix (Star Trek Adventures, #4)
  • Death Count
  • The IDIC Epidemic
Diane Carey also wrote the Distress Call 911 young adult series under the name D.L. Carey.

Diane Carey is primarily a science fiction author best known for her work in the Star Trek franchise. She has been the lead-off writer for two Star Trek spin-off book series: Star Trek The Next Generation with Star Trek: Ghost Ship, and the novelization of the Star Trek: Enterprise pilot, Broken Bow.

For more
More about Diane Carey...

Other Books in the Series

Star Trek: The Original Series (1 - 10 of 113 books)
  • Star Trek I: The Motion Picture (Star Trek TOS: Movie Novelizations, #1)
  • The Entropy Effect (Star Trek TOS #2)
  • The Klingon Gambit
  • The Covenant of the Crown
  • The Prometheus Design
  • The Abode of Life
  • Star Trek II: The Wrath Of Khan (Star Trek TOS: Movie Novelizations, #2)
  • Black Fire
  • Triangle
  • Web of the Romulans

Share This Book

“A ship doesn't look quite the same from inside, does it? A wise sailor,' Robert said, fanning his arms, 'will one time stand upon the shore and watch his ship sail by, that he shall from then on appreciate not being left behind.' He grinned and added, 'Eh?'

George gave him a little grimace. 'Who's that? Melville? Or C.S. Forrester?'

It's me!' Robert complained. "Can't I be profound now and again?'

Hell, no.'

Why not?'

Because you're still alive. Gotta be dead to be profound.'

You're unchivalrous, George.”
More quotes…