Tuesday, December 19, 2017

5 Book Recommendations to Ease Your LAST JEDI Disappointments

If, like me, you were more than a little disappointed in The Last Jedi's contribution to Disney's take on Star Wars, here are some reading suggestions to restore your faith in galaxies close and those far, far away...

1. The Thrawn Trilogy by Timothy Zahn
An obvious choice, perhaps, but with good reason. Widely regarded as one of the best series in the Star Wars Extended Universe (the former canon, since demoted to 'Legends'), this brings Luke, Han, and Leia back to life in true Star Wars fashion. It is a thing of beauty, for both character and story. Zahn is a master storyteller and one who does the universe justice, even creating here two characters -Mara Jade and Talon Karrde- who became favorites in the EU and were later used by many different authors. The Heir to the Empire and its sequels were long-held as the canonical sequel trilogy to George Lucas' originals. In fact, during the early days of the announcement of Disney's new trilogy, many fans believed it would be this story they would adapt to film.

2. The Reckoners by Brandon Sanderson
This epic trilogy of superhero fiction is brilliant and will work as a wonderful salve if anyone else (ironically) lost hope despite The Last Jedi's 'spark of hope' theme. In a world where absolute power corrupts absolutely, superpowers corrupt even the best of mankind into supervillains and a ragtag bunch of vigilantes fight for hope and freedom. Also included: terrible, hilariously terrible, analogies around every corner.

3. The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer
While this doesn't include lightsabers or a mystical Force, it's a fantastic space opera that includes rebellions, a tyrannical government, mind control, ordinary people turned heroes, political intrigue -and, best of all, fairy tale adaptations. ^_^

4. Star Wars: The Clone Wars
Another great addition to the Star Wars EU, this goes into more detail -and tries to make sense of- the events between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith. It features fantastic and heartbreaking development for familiar characters with especial focus on Anakin and the events that make his downfall more believable, an in-depth look at the dubious morals from both the Jedi Order and the Republic that led to the galaxy's downfall, but also an incredible arc for EU character Quinlan Vos, a gray Jedi and a kind of anti-Anakin. This series has so many different facets, so many great stories, and definitely worth reading.

5. Fullmetal Alchemist by Hiromu Arakawa
This sci-fi/fantasy manga will definitely appeal to Star Wars fans for its unique worldbuilding, lovable characters, and depth of mythology. Instead of the mystical Force, it uses magical alchemy, a power more scientific but perhaps not as understood by its practitioners as they'd like to think (reminiscent, I think, of both the Old Republic's Jedi Order and the supposition hinted at in The Last Jedi). Like Star Wars, it too centers around a terrible struggle between good and evil, its villains not drawn to the dark side but instead born of the dark side of humanity. Filled with an eccentric and lovable array of heroes, anti-heroes, revolutionaries, vigilantes, and big-hearted everyday people, this will definitely make a good read for fans who enjoyed those aspects of Star Wars.

BONUS 6. Knights of the Old Republic
Contributed by a follower over on my Facebook page!
"Some good picks! If I might add, for what I feel to be a truly great Star Wars adventure (for the main arc, anyway), the Knights of the Old Republic comic line. Zayne Carrick is one of my all-time favorite Star Wars characters, and the supporting cast is also great."

Do you have any suggestions?


  1. Thank goodness for something to wash away the taste of The LAst Jedi (ha ha). Seriously though I did just read the first Zahn book a few months ago and I really need to get into Dark Force Rising soon. It's so refreshing to read something that takes place soon after RotJ and not 30 years later, and also to have something actually respect the characters! So thanks for the recs!

    1. You're welcome! And Zahn is the best of the Star Wars writers in my opinion (though to be honest I haven't read a whole lot yet). Definitely pick up on it before you start forgetting details, too, because those are a little tough to jump back into after a while without rereading.