Thursday, November 21, 2019

Reading (old) Star Wars - 3

Book Review / Audiobook Review.

Even before The Force Awakens heralded the return of Star Wars I decided to dip in and refresh and improve my knowledge of the 'written' Star Wars universe. Would I have done so knowing most of it would become irrelevant with the changes introduced with The Force Awakens? Perhaps not...

Thrawn & Legends

Of course, there's the incredible Timothy Zahn's Thrawn trilogy Dark Force Rising, Heir to the Empire, and The Last Command. I am convinced that without these three books Star Wars would still have been dead. So, all hail to Zahn, the Real Emperor.

However, canon Star Wars was disrupted with arrival of The Force Awakens. Many of the characters and story lines are no longer canon (read that as: some books that took place before, and everything after Return of the Jedi).

So we've got two timelines now... One where Luke finds the love of his live, and one where he started milking... nah. Let's not go there. Except that the books no longer considered canon are called Star Wars Legends.

(And in general not very good...)

Nevertheless you should, no, must read Zahn's trilogy. It's better than the most recent movies... Especially The Last Jedi was a bit of a (no, a huge!) let down after the entertaining The Force Awakens...

Well, let's go back to what happend / was written before that point in time...

The quest for The Force continues!


  • Tales of the Jedi - Tom Veitch (?)
  • Shadow Hunter - Michael Reaves
  • Cloak of Deception - James Luceno
  • The Phantom Menace - Terry Brooks
  • Jedi Quest
  • Rogue Planet - Greg Bear
  • Outbound Flight - Timothy Zahn
  • The Approaching Storm - Alan Dean Foster
  • Attack of the Clones - R.A. Salvatore
  • Shatterpoint - Matthew Stover
  • The Cestus Deception
  • Med Star 1 - Michael Reaves and Steve Perry
  • Med Star 2 - Michael Reaves and Steve Perry

This batch

  • Jedi Trial - David Sherman and Dan Cragg.
  • Yoda - Dark Rendezvous - Sean Stewart
  • Labyrinth of Evil - James Luceno
  • Revenge of the Sith - Matthew Stover
  • Dark Lord - The Rise of Darth Vader - James Luceno
  • The Paradise Snare - A.C. Crispin


Before diving deep here are the best books of this batch:

  • Yoda - Dark Rendezvous - Sean Stewart
  • Dark Lord - The Rise of Darth Vader - James Luceno

Jedi Trial - David Sherman and Dan Cragg.

Anakin Skywalker goes on a mission without his master, and he and Neja Halcyon fight a battle against the separatists on some remote, important yet poorly defended world. Standard fare.

Yoda - Dark Rendezvous - Sean Stewart

Final book of the Clone Wars arc, and introducing 'Scout', a young and not so powerful Jedi Padawan who's actively exploiting all loopholes in the 'proper' Jedi code of conduct...

She deserves a lot more screen time... if only for the totally unpronounceable name Tallisibeth Enwandung Esterhazy J... Which brings me to one of the plot holes in the Star Wars universe: if those young kids are taken from their parents at search an early age to isolate them from their past, then why would they keep their names?!?

Many things make no sense in the Star Wars universe, let's chalk that one up to the Sith as well 😊

Anyway, good book, there's still some hope after all...

(I don't think there was another book featuring this character, I think... Pity.)

Now that cover... it's horrible! I guess the same kids that wrote / produced Tales of the Jedi photoshopped it...

Labyrinth of Evil - James Luceno

Prequel to Revenge of the Sith and actually not bad at all. It nicely fills in some of the questions left open at the start of episode III.

Again, consumed as an (abridged) audio book, so the written version may suffer a bit (many people seem to comment on James Luceno's writing style). As for a good lead-in and a bit of background filler it's still okay.

Revenge of the Sith - Matthew Stover

Stover worked hard on turning the movie script into a book. It's passable enough, probably better if taken as part of the three book combo Labyrinth, Revenge, and Rise...

Dark Lord - The Rise of Darth Vader - James Luceno

Actually, this book seems to be more about surviving order 66 and Vader's inquisition, than about Vader himself. Still, it's a good book,  better tha expected actually, and it does wrap up Anakin's transformation into Vader.

The Paradise Snare - A.C. Crispin

Book 1 of the Han Solo trilogy, by A.C. Crispin. Again the audio book. Thus far, as far as I can recall, all books that I listened to were narrated by the same person. This one was narrated by someone else, whose style matches the style of the book.

Aimed perhaps at the young adult market (?) it's just not that good. Crispin should be able to do better. I think it's pretty safe to skip this one.

Okay. What's next?

Dapper 148 / TellTales! 84

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