Transformers: Ghosts of Yesterday (Transformers (Ballantine Books))

The first human-alien contact. The last word in galactic warfare. The story you must read–before Transformers rockets to the big screen!

A mammoth robotic being, clearly of alien origin, has been found beneath the Arctic ice. Its advanced engineering dwarfs known human technology, and unlocking its secrets will catapult American science eons into the future. In search of the mysterious artifact’s origin, a covert government agency sends the manned craft Ghost 1 on a perilous journey of discovery.

When a mishap maroons Ghost 1 in the far reaches of unknown space, the ship’s distress beacon reaches the very alien race Ghost 1’s crew has been seeking: the Autobots. The gigantic mechanized beings are also on a quest: to find the Allspark, a device crucial to the salvation of their home world, Cybertron. But they’re not alone. The Decepticons, the Autobots’ brutal enemies, have their own sinister purposes in seeking the Allspark. As these adversaries are drawn together once more, the stage is set for a death-dealing new battle in which each is driven by a single-minded aim: total annihilation of the enemy.

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3 Responses to Transformers: Ghosts of Yesterday (Transformers (Ballantine Books))

  1. Dusty Kothenbeutel "World's Best Mashed Potat... says:
    7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
    3.0 out of 5 stars
    Worthwhile if you are a hardcore Transformers Gen 1 fan, May 4, 2007
    By 
    Dusty Kothenbeutel “World’s Best Mashed Potat… (Marshalltown, Iowa, USA) –
    (REAL NAME)
      

    This review is from: Transformers: Ghosts of Yesterday (Transformers (Ballantine Books)) (Mass Market Paperback)

    This is the first Alan Dean Foster book that I have read. I see inside the cover that he has written original stories, and I would like to read those someday. I enjoyed his storytelling ability in this book. The rest of the shortcomings I don’t hold against Mr. Foster, since he was simply writing the story he was paid to write.

    The Good: Several favorite Gen 1 Autobots return, surely to be welcomed by diehard fans who grew up on TF like I did. Specifically, Optimus, Bumblebee, Ratchet, Jazz, and Ironhide. Starscream is the perennial main Decepticon character, and lives up to expectations perfectly, with the added bonus of not being whiny and annoying like on the cartoon. The other familiar Decepticon is Frenzy.

    The Bad: The rest of the Decepticons are less familiar to Gen 1 fans, which includes Barricade, Blackout (with Scorponok as a tiny, dependent, mostly helpless symbiote), and Bonecrusher. Megatron is oft-referenced, but one of the linchpins of the plot is his long-term AWOL status, thus he is never directly involved.

    Also Bad, Frenzy is present strictly as a token punching bag, and is rendered nonfunctional with no effort. In fact, I can remember him having just 3 lines of dialogue in the whole book. His entire presence is easy to forget and barely mentioned.

    Still more Bad, not once is the physical appearance of any character described, human nor Transformer. It is apparently assumed that you will be familiar with the appearance of the toys, lest you would not be reading this book in the first place. Not being very familiar with recent TF toys by the newer Decepticon names, I was left with no real sense of their appearance nor abilities, and I know that had I not had prior knowledge of the 5 Autobots in the story, I would have experienced the same problem with them as well.

    More “Bad” yet, the entire story takes place in 1969, concurrent with the Apollo 11 launch. Even my love of TF can do little to stay my hatred of “modern/futuristic technology placed into pre-modern history” stories.

    IN CONCLUSION: If you are a hardcore Gen 1 TF fan, this book is reasonably entertaining, although dry and uninspired, and with FAR too small of a cast of Transformers. If you are unfamiliar with TF, or even if you are but not enough so to go see the new movie on opening day, then this book will be a complete waste of time.

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  2. Evan the Dweezil says:
    1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Oh, Starscream!, July 27, 2007
    By 
    Evan the Dweezil (A Place-Sort Of, Montana) –

    This review is from: Transformers: Ghosts of Yesterday (Transformers (Ballantine Books)) (Mass Market Paperback)

    While this book has a few errors in regard to the timeline established in the movie, it was a quick fun read. The best element was an expanded role for the powerhungry Starscream, whom we only see briefly on the screen. He’s up to his dastardly best, trying to secure his place in the Decepticon food chain.

    I also have to say that Foster did a pretty good job for having been handed a partially written manuscript and reshaping and adding to it, molding it into its present form.

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  3. Samuel S. Garland "Giant Insects Will Rule th... says:
    1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    Well-written and worthy of the time it takes to read., July 13, 2007
    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    This review is from: Transformers: Ghosts of Yesterday (Transformers (Ballantine Books)) (Mass Market Paperback)

    Foster is a good writer, and when making fiction based off an existing franchise that’s what really counts. I think the Transformers, by their very nature, are best appreciated visually. I mean, giant robots are hard to portray by just written description, you need to SEE how big they are. However, we have the movie images of the ‘bots to run our imaginations off of, and Foster can tell a story quite well, so this comes off as being an interesting prequel if you already like the movie. Granted, we know nothing shocking will happen to many of this book’s characters because we see them in the film, but the tale here definately adds some depth to the characters and creates a little more meaning to the goals in the film. It is sci-fi about giant alien robots, so you need to suspend a lot of disbelief to enjoy this thoroughly, but the plot is smooth, the characters are consistent, and the action does pull you in. If you even think you’re interested in this genre then you’ll enjoy reading this book.

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