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The IDIC Epidemic

(Star Trek: The Original Series #38)

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  1,196 ratings  ·  41 reviews
I.D.I.C -- Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combination. More than just a simple credo, for those of the planet Vulcan it is the cornerstone of their philosophy.

Now, on the Vulcan Science Colony Nisus, that credo of tolerance is being being put to its sternest test. For here, on a planet where Vulcan, human, Klingon, and countless other races live and work side by side, a
Mass Market, 278 pages
Published February 1st 1988 by Pocket Books
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Average rating 3.80  · 
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 ·  1,196 ratings  ·  41 reviews

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Aug 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: star-trek, tos
A medical mystery story that has a meaningful resolution keeping with Star Trek's ideals and ethics. The IDIC concept has become central to what Star Trek is all about, and I enjoyed reading a story that ended up reinforcing that concept. I didn't enjoy the story as much as the novel it is a sequel to, The Vulcan Academy Murders, but I very much appreciate Jean Lorrah's singular take on the Star Trek universe and the optimism of her characters.

Full review:
Apr 16, 2017 rated it it was ok
This one had its moments, but was overall a dud.
David Palazzolo
Mar 19, 2013 rated it really liked it
A rather interesting novel and the sequel to The Vulcan Academy Murders. The biggest downside of this book is that the Star Trek regulars (Kirk, McCoy, Spock, etc), are firmly pushed to the side. However it is in service to the story--the inhabitants of the multicultural science colony of Nisus are well drawn out and do not seen to be "Mary Sue's". If we were able to spin Nisus off into it's own book (or trilogy or full series outright) that would be terrific, but I've never encountered them ...more
STILL NOT AS GOOD AS The Vulcan Academy Murders. The original characters aren't as compelling. But certainly still one of the good ones.

I wonder how many times I read these as a kid. It's probably been fifteen years and I remembered a lot more than I would've expected.
Mike Crate
Jul 31, 2016 rated it liked it
Nisus is a science colony grown well beyond its academic roots being a home to a viable multi species community from within the Federation sphere and some from beyond. The most notable is the Klingon scientist Korsal who is the former husband of a Starfleet officer who together had two sons. However a disease breaks out and mutates striking species from across the range of blood types, few seem to be immune and exposure to one strain is no guarantee of immunity to a previous one. However Korsal ...more
Mar 01, 2015 rated it it was ok
I didn't enjoy it as much as The Vulcan Academy Murders. It was too slow and boring at first but got better in the second half.
Oleta Blaylock
Aug 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is a follow up to THE VULCAN ACADEMY MURDERS. This story takes place a few weeks after the ending of THE VULCAN ACADEMY MURDERS. Sarek and Amanda are heading off to a planet in need of Sarek's ambassador expertise. The T'Vet followers are being taken to a colony where they can practice their beliefs without harming any other Vulcans. The Enterprise is well on its way when they are diverted back to Vulcan to pick up additional medical and support personnel because of a plague that has broken ...more
Kieran McAndrew
Feb 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A science colony comprised of people from a variety of Federation member worlds and beyond is threatened by a mutagenic virus which has broken the species barrier and has the potential to kill all sentient life in the quadrant.

Lorrah's novel is interesting in that it attempts to address the risks of comingling species as well as the benefits.
May 04, 2019 rated it liked it
Enjoyed.... always fun to read books about some old favorite characters
Michelle Hanson
Mar 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This was very good.. I enjoyed it.
Karen Cowgill
May 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Couldn't put it down!
Apr 01, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: sci-fi, fiction, star-trek
IDIC Epidemic is a good, if somewhat long-winded, book on the importance of diversity and separating parents from the individuality of their children.
Aug 02, 2019 rated it liked it
I guess they don't have in the future, or a way to replicate blood, or this book would have been a lot shorter.
Jan 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-i-own-ed
Excellent story, a bit too melodramatically written.
Feb 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love the Star Trek franchise. All of it: the television shows, movies, books, and so forth. I have already had a few Trek books reviewed. This latest one to be reviewed, Star Trek: The IDIC Epidemic, by Jean Lorrah is one about which I am highly enthusiastic for two reasons. First of all, it delves into some of the mythology about Vulcans, but also about Romulans and Klingons. The other plus to this book is that it is a sequel of sorts to Lorrah's other original series Trek book, The Vulcan ...more
David King
Jan 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
“The IDIC Epidemic” by Jean Lorrah is a Star Trek Original Series novel which is more or less a sequel to Lorrah's other novel, “The Vulcan Academy Murders”. The story picks up a few days after the events of the previous novel with the Enterprise preparing to transport Spock’s parents, including a now recovered Amanda to a diplomatic event. However, the Enterprise is diverted to the planet Nissus, a scientific colony where multiple species live and work together due to the outbreak of deadly ...more
Rich Meyer
Nov 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The IDIC Epidemic is a bit misleading for a title; the story refers to a perversion of the Vulcan concept rather than the actual philosophy. Still, this was an interesting novel. And it weaves in an explanation for why Klingons look different in the original TV series and the movies. Until Enterprise, it was the only real explanation we had.

The book is a pseudo-sequel to Jean Lorrah's previous Trek entry, the superb Vulcan Academy Murders, though it is really connected only by a tangent - Sulu
Jul 15, 2009 rated it liked it
If you are looking for an action driven book, then this one's not for you. And if you are looking for a Star Trek tie-in that would heavily feature the Enterprise crew, then this one's not for you either. Yes, it takes place in the ST:TOS universe, but Kirk, Spock, McCoy and all the others are just secondary characters here, the main part is mostly focused on ST:TOS' guest stars - like Corrigan, Sorel or Sarek and Amanda - or on original characters. It's basically an intergalactic take on ...more
Snail in Danger (Sid) Nicolaides
Something else that I was inclined to give a re-read to, after seeing it at a library book sale. In a way, this one is hampered by all kinds of scientific assertions. And upon re-reading, the story just doesn't seem that strong. (Though the unexpected twist was interesting.)

I haven't picked up the quasi-prequel from the library yet, and I decided to take the author's advice that I didn't need to have (re-)read it to read the sequel. If I hadn't I might have read this one differently.
Jan 07, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction, childhood, trek
Re-read 2016. Same strengths and weaknesses as The Vulcan Academy Murders: occasionally nice character work and a great idea weighed down by poor execution. The chief problems were melodrama and easily-avoidable conflict as the driver of the plot. (Oh, not Amanda! Oh, that Sendet. And so on.) Also a lot of tell-don't-show. Oh well, this was good enough bedside reading and, unsurprisingly, still warp factors ahead of the much-despised (by me) Klingon Gambit.
Jun 24, 2007 rated it did not like it
I read this book against my own wishes and afterward I felt like I was raped. Did you know IDIC is a concept that Gene roddenberry came up with IDIC to make more money off of a continually calling star trek series. It was part of his plan to use star trek to sell merchandise some people could say that he was a visionary with the merchandise but I think he was just sucking at the tits of his fans who made the show last three seasons and hit syndication. anyways the book sucks
Heather Domin
Apr 23, 2011 rated it liked it
The Vulcan Academy Murders is one of my favorite Trek novels ever, so I've been looking forward to reading this sequel for ages. I didn't fall in love with it, but I found it entertaining. It was great to reunite with all the OCs I enjoyed in TVAM, as well as a few new ones. (I didn't care for the Klingon or his kids, though. That part felt...not right, somehow. It was just off.) It didn't stick with me like TVAM, but it was a pleasant way to spend a Sunday morning.
Daniel Kukwa
Aug 14, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: star-trek
It's my least favourite of Jean Lorrah's "Star Trek" novels. The characters are still well drawn, and it makes a nice sequel to "The Vulcan Academy Murders"...but I didn't find the plot as engaging. I also found the Nisus Colony superfluous, given what the Federation already I think she's hammering her (worthy) point home with a bit of a sledgehammer.
Dean Deters
Aug 22, 2010 rated it liked it
I enjoy reading the books with the original characters. This story has to do with a colony facing a deadly disease, which attacks those of mixed blood. An interesting correlation, perhaps, to AIDS?

The story stays pretty true to the characters. It also has several aliens characters who are major characters.

If you liked the original series, you would probably like this book.
Jun 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: star-trek
Having read The Vulcan Academy Murders I had to move on to it's sequel. This is not a whodunit but a 'battle against nature' plot that continues the story of several of the characters who were on Vulcan in the previous book, plus the crew of the Enterprise and a very likeable Klingon family ( if you thought all Klingons were warriors, this novel will enlighten you).
May 22, 2018 rated it liked it
It has an excellent premise, the IDIC diversity mandate that’s central to Star fleets success has lead to a deadly plague. It’s true to Star Trek ideals. The Klingon characters where great and the Vulcans where too. It should Have been 4 or 5 stars but something was missing.
Kristina Brown
Nov 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: star-trek
A thoroughly enjoyable read that continues where 'The Vulcan Academy Murders' leaves off. While the epidemic is the central plot, there's sufficient going on around it to turn it from an episode into a drama. As always its the characters that make this come alive and keep you coming back.
Jan 13, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: star-trek-tos
Better than some, but worse than others. Some characterizations were off, as were some elements of 'treknology'. The concept for the book was ok, but it was carried off rather thin; there are several plot holes and inconsistencies.
Apr 16, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: star-trek
One of the better of the old, original Trek books as the crew scrambles to deal with a mysterious virus that threatens a planet.
Trek always does well with those 'mystery illness' stories.

They should have done a Trek spin off that was a medical drama.

Jun 07, 2009 rated it really liked it
It's always a relief to read a book after many years and discover that you still love it. :) I am kind of amused by how hard the author works to pair off every non-Enterprise character possible, but then again, I love me some space romance, so it's all good.
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Jean Lorrah is a science fiction and fantasy author. She has produced several Star Trek novels and often collaborated with Jacqueline Lichtenberg. Her most recent work with Lichtenberg is on the Sime - Gen Universe. Her fantasy series The Savage Empire, from the 1980s, is mostly solo work. She is also a professor of English at Murray State University and received her PhD from Florida State ...more

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“Sarek frowned. "Insubordination?"

"Eccentricity," Spock replied. "Captain Kirk allows a great deal of leeway as long as his crewmembers do their jobs well. Mr. Chevron simply takes advantage of it."

"That good at his job, is he?" asked Sarek.

"Indeed. Extremely good.”
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