Just finished "A New Dawn", the origin story for the Kanan/Hera duo from Star Wars: Rebels. Not Miller's best work (I definitely liked "Kenobi" better), but the story is nonetheless worth reading. It fits into a time when the Empire is new and the Galactic Civil War has not begun in earnest. Hera is already involved, out and about in the galaxy, collecting info and making contacts. Somehow she already has Ghost and Phantom...I guess I missed that backstory somewhere along the line.
The very nature of this tale, set early in the saga, means there are no starfighter battles or Imperial superweapons. There is no shortage of stormtroopers and TIE fighters, however.
I think there is a trend in the new Star Wars fare toward "gritty" and "realistic" works. This book feels dirty: mud and darkness everywhere, mostly owing to the planetary dynamics of Gorse, the main setting for the action. Blood and bruising certainly weighs in as well; one character in particular gets mercilessly pummeled repeatedly. Missing teeth, broken bones, internal bleeding. A bit much for the regularly fast and loose space opera that is Star Wars. This is likely to be my biggest gripe with the rebooted canon: 'realistic, endless war and suffering'. Ugh. Give me a break.
As it is, this book works well to set up the Rebels TV series and has a place in my preferred Star Wars canon (more on that later).
Next Up: I've already started reading Tarkin; then I'm heading for Lords of the Sith and The Rise of Darth Vader.
In between, I've read the most of the following comics series: Princess Leia, Kanan the Last Padawan, Shattered Empire, Star Wars, and I plan to read the first few issues of Lando. Thanks for the loan, Nate!
I am also looking forward to getting the new Rebels season via Amazon video.