|Del Rey [US]; Arrow
|Story published as:
Hardback Novel (2000)
Audio Book (2000, 2007)
Paperback Novel (2001)
If you have read this book, please
1 review [Review
score: 1 / 5]
Dispatched to the mysterious planet of Zonama Sekot,
source of the fastest ships in the galaxy, Obi-Wan and
Anakin are swept up in a swirl of deadly intrigue and
betrayal. For there are others who covert the power such
superfast ships could bring. Raith Sienar, a brilliant
but unscrupulous weapons and ship designer, has the
brains to decipher the Zonama Sekot ship design.
Commander Wilhuff Tarkin has at his disposal the forces
of the mighty Trade Federation with which to extract the
secret.Together, they make a formidable foe, one a small
and undeveloped planet can hardly hope to stand against.
But as Tarkin's fleet strikes with all its brutal power,
Obi-Wan and Anakin sense a disturbance in the Force
unlike any they have encountered before. It seems there
are more secrets on Zonama Sekot than meet the eye.
The search for thoses secrets will threaten the bond
between Obi-Wan and Anakin... and bring the troubled
young apprentice face-to-face with his deepest fears -
and his darkest destiny.
This story occurs approximately 29 years before the
Battle of Yavin.
Related Stories (in
short: A few years after the Naboo Incident, Obi Wan struggles with
mentoring his young but promising apprentice, who has better ideas
than to spent his time learning. After some unnecessary imaginative
trash-gliding-race on Corruscant, the Temple sends master and
apprentice on a adventure: go to a strange planet and procure a
strange vessel and to learn more about a missing Jedi. In the
meantime militant conspirators attempt the same.
"In review: The
Good - The movie characters dialogue is mostly written alright...
While reading I could mostly imagine the actors reading these
lines... but that is all that is good here. The Bad - The first
problem is this book's structure, I like it when the author uses
chapters as a tool, knows how long they should be and how they
should end. Here we get a 330 pages book with 67 chapters... some
not longer than 30% of a page, others (especially the first, very
tedious chapter) more than twenty pages. Now this would not be that
bad if the writing, or the plotting, or anything else would be
interesting. But honestly it is not.
"Which brings me to the
second problem: the plotting... honestly... if you take my plot
summary from above and add to it "and then there was a battle..."
than this is the whole story. It does not also help that the author
either chose or was forced to use some very strange elements... like
golden-skinned aliens (sounds simply campy)... or organic
spaceships... or a worm creature captain, whose crew is honored to
be his food. The author made the growing of a spaceship practically
the most important part of the book, but besides it being just
strange... it was mostly just boring. All this strangeness on top of
almost a lack of interesting plot... and a mystery about the missing
Jedi... and than add to it Tarkin's subplot... and what you get as
result is a book, that tries to say something, but does not know
what it can say, while at the same time trying to be all mysterious.
"And that brings us to problem Number three: The Foreboding - The
author had clearly no idea what would happen in Episode II, but by
the time this book was written, there should be enough knowledge
among the employees of Lucas as to were the story would go. So
someone should have told Mr. Bear what he can write, and what he
cannot... or maybe the author ignored this possibility. One such
scene is early on in a discussion between Sienar and Tarkin
regarding THE BIG PLAN... which was conveniently cut out... we get
only the lead in to this dialogue, as well as the lead out... but we
do not get the dialogue itself. It is as if a movie showed you only
the preparation for a major battle scene, and its aftermath, but not
the fight itself. Zahn's book Outbound
Flight was written years later, and it had the luxury to show
this kind of dialogue, and it was awesome... the lack of it in this
book is understandable, but handled very bad.
"Then we have that
thing with Trade Federation vessels being integrated into Republic
defense forces... I am sure SOMEONE retconned this to fit the
established timeline... but it all just reads like early post
Episode I fan fiction of a botanist.
"Bottom line: I have read
more than thirty Star Wars books. I am not saying I am an authority
in this field, I am just saying I am no rookie to these books and I
enjoyed the majority. In my opinion this book is bad. The writing is
mostly bad and the plotting is horrible. All that it offers the
reader for the overreaching Star Wars plot is handled way better in
standalone adventure it is a tedious, long, confusing and simply
a strange read. I think this is the worst Star Wars book I have read