Nancy Bilyeau
April 17, 1998 AT 04:00 AM EDT

When reading most Star Trek memoirs penned by members of the original cast, you can bet on backstabbing aplenty: This was one ornery group. While Koenig, who played the cocky Ensign Chekov from 1967 to 1969, does come up with some dirt — William Shatner was a camera hog, Leonard Nimoy a cold fish — Trek fans may yearn for more Trek. Koenig devotes considerable chunks of Warped Factors: A Neurotic’s Guide to the Universe to his grim childhood (he grew up in a crumbling $67.50-a-month New York flat) and his pre- and post-Chekov career crises (after Star Trek, ”the phone never rang” for years). Still, Koenig, who’s made a comeback as a mind-reading villain on the sci-fi series Babylon 5, recounts his ups and downs with objectivity and wit, making this tale of a struggling actor worthwhile. B

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