Sunday, May 21, 2017

Rebel Rising

Another well written, engaging Young Adult novel: Rebel Rising (Beth Revis, 2017). This tale slots into the space between Catalyst and the Rogue One novelization.

Who wants to learn the sad history of Jyn Erso? Just finished reading about the intervening years between when Saw picks her up as a little girl hiding in a cave on Lah'mu to the time the Rebels pick her up as prisoner Lianna Hallik riding in a turbo tank on Wobani. 

Jyn truly does lead a sad life. The Empire has ruined everything for her, multiple times over. She has learned to survive, but has lost the essential spark of life: hope.  We'll see her regain that capacity in the movie: just in time to die a glorious death. Wow.

During this book, Jyn is not a Rebel with a capital "R" in the tradition on Mon Mothma. She also doesn't fit in with the quasi-terrorist Rebellion outcasts like Saw Gerrera, even though she spent a lot of time with him and had great affection for him. She blames equally the Empire and the Rebellion for the sad state of affairs in the galaxy. She simply wants to be left alone, but events and circumstances never allow it. A Star Wars tragedy to be sure.

A nice addition to my preferred canon.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Guardians of the Whills

Just finished reading this nice volume- Guardians of the Whills (Greg Rucka, 2017). Technically a Young Adult tale, we follow some of the happenings on Jedha before the events of Rogue One. Our two main protagonists are featured on the cover: Baze Malbus, the light repeater heavy-hitter and (Kentucky Cheroot) Imwe, the blind force sensitive.

I like these two. Rucka does a great job writing these characters with the correct voice and feel. I love their playful banter. I like grumpy Malbus and hopeful Imwe.

We get to see how quality of life on Jedha has declined drastically since the Empire arrived. Our heroes get to make a major difference in the lives of some residents. Overall a solid addition to my preferred canon.

Saturday, May 6, 2017


Just finished reading this new book: Thrawn, by Timothy Zahn (2017). I must admit that I was nervous about how the Thrawn mythology would be "re-invented" in a new, more Star Wars: Rebels way (read: changed for change's sake; silly disregard for previous tales).

To that end, I was quite pleased. For a EU veteran like me, this book fits seamlessly into the rest of the Thrawn information. It does not, as near as I can tell, change anything so much that the Thrawn Trilogy would be rendered incorrect.

One minor gripe with this book might be just that: it feels a bit...minor. It has some decent action, near the end, but no good guys to follow and for whom to root. Remember, Thrawn is a bad guy. An interesting and enlightened bad guy, but still a bad guy. 

We learn Thrawn's origin story, following a short re-telling of the events of Mist Encounter, the Zahn short story (from Star Wars Adventure Journal Vol. 1, No. 7, WEG 1995). We then see Thrawn attend the academy, Thrawn hit a low point in terms of dignity (he disguises himself with dark glasses and a robe to meet some low level flunky in a diner. Oh, the humanity!).

Overall, I am pleased. Not overwhelmed, but pleased with this book. I am very glad that Disney didn't hire a Star Wars great like Zahn to simply ruin his own greatest creation with a needless and oddball revision.