|Story published as:
Hardback Book (2017 [US only])
Paperback Book (2017 [UK],
e-Book (2017 [US only])
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score: 5 / 5]
When Jyn Erso was five years old, her mother was
murdered and her father taken from her to serve the
Empire. But despite the loss of her parents she is not
completely alone—Saw Gerrera, a man willing to go to any
extremes necessary in order to resist Imperial tyranny,
takes her in as his own, and gives her not only a home
but all the abilities and resources she needs to become
a rebel herself.
Jyn dedicates herself to the
cause—and the man. But fighting alongside Saw and his
people brings with it danger and the question of just
how far Jyn is willing to go as one of Saw’s soldiers.
When she faces an unthinkable betrayal that shatters her
world, Jyn will have to pull the pieces of herself back
together and figure out what she truly believes in…and
who she can really trust.
This story begins approximately 14 years before Episode IV: A New Hope.
Related Stories (in
- Attack of the Clones
- Catalyst by James Luceno
- Revenge of the Sith
- Rebel Rising
- Rogue One by Alexander Freed
Wars is full of orphaned or abandoned children. The obvious ones
being the Skywalkers, but let’s not forget the Bridgers, the Leonis,
the Graff’s, Cassian and Jyn and countless more. This serves two
functions. One: Seeing events unfold through the eyes of children
makes the tale more interesting for a younger audience. Two: The
level of cruelty and violence these children endure makes the
overall universe much more darker and more dangerous.
all those, it is Jyn’s story that might be truly the most
heartbreaking, because it does not hide the truth about that
situation behind something resembling an adventure. REBEL RISING
does not hold back the ugly truth of every war and becomes therefore
much more engaging through stronger and more emotional character
While Catalyst is the beginning of the story, Rebel
Rising is a direct sequel, refocusing from Galen Erso to his
daughter and her substitute parent Saw. But we do not get a typical
starwarsy training montage, but a really good look at how bad her
situation became after Saw pulled her out that cave. After all we
are talking about Saw Gerrera, someone, who was so hardcore, the
Rebel alliance did not want to work with him. The same Alliance,
that had no problems with Cassians way of handling things.
to see Saw through Jyn’s eyes, and together with her we first see
him as a savior, then an awkward father figure, mentor, then
growingly paranoid protector until finally we arrive at the unstable
extremist we have seen in ROGUE ONE. Saw lost his sister a long time
ago, then he lost his homeworld, his heart belonged to Jyn which fed
his paranoia, but finally he sacrificed more and more of himself, of
his soul and of his body for THE cause. Once he had only his own
life left to sacrifice, he started sacrificing others. This is a
pretty bleak version of Star Wars, perfectly in line with ROGUE ONE.
Every time her life reboots, Jyn herself seems to masterfully settle
into each new situation. But she too loses parts of herself each
time. Her life is a downward spiral, one she cannot escape. But she
almost never truly tries. She seems to be a master of the present
situation, but she never is the creator of her circumstances. As in
the movie, when she was rescued, she was perfectly able to help with
her rescue, she just could not bring herself to initiate an escape
herself. Instead of acting, mostly she was reacting.
itself might not have been something new, but the way it presented
the characters, their emotions and the fact that it was part of the
STAR WARS universe made this one a real grim pleasure.
mistake, this is just a middle chapter in the ERSO trilogy.
CATALYST, REBEL RISING and ROGUE ONE form possibly the best series
in the new canon (even if Catalyst could have been slightly better).