Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Star Wars Legacy of the Force: Exile

written by Aaron Allston
Review by Dan Tres Omi

Omi's Note: There are spoilers in this review...If you want to read the book without any surprises given away, do not read any further. You have been forewarned.

Aaron Allston returns for his second shot at the Legacy of the Force series. Allston, a veteran in the Star Wars EU sagas, is considered to be one of the most consistent heavy hitters. Allson's strength is in his ability to mesh both the non Jedi and Jedi characters of the Star Wars EU. Some Star Wars EU writers can do well in discussing matters that deal with the Force, but fall short when non Jedi characters and situations come in to play. While other writers do the opposite. His mixture of the Force philosophy, military maneuvering, and the political jousting is well balanced.

Jacen Solo continues his foray into the Sith while the Correllian insurrection is backed by the ever deceitful Bothans. Once the Bothans enter the picture, a domino effect is created in which other systems such as Commenor join. Soon the Correllian Confederation is joined. Things begin to get nastier for our heroes. Wedge Antilles and his family have to escape Correllia once Wedge decides to resign his commission after the failed coup attempt on Tenel Ka of the Hapes Consortium in which he had no connection with. After one anticipated assassination attempt, he decides to head off planet. He encounters Han and Leia and together they decide to get to the bottom of it all.

The Solos, the Antilles, and Corran Horn and his family put their heads together to try and figure out who is behind this all. They all agree it is another shadowy Sith figure. To them, all roads lead to Lumiya. The Solos reunite with the Skywalker to see if they had any leads and the hunt is on. Meanwhile Lumiya and Jacen send Ben Skywalker on a mission to see if he is worthy of being a Sith apprentice.

Allston gets it all right. He provides enough space battles, Jedi lightsaber duels, and political intrigue without making it all confusing. It was good to see Corran Horn in action. Lando Calrissian plays another important role. Ben Skywalker figures out how to survive on his own and begins a new legacy outside of the shadow of his father.

One thing that stands out is that when one sits back to think, one realizes that the Skywalker line is really more apt to lean towards the Sith than to the Jedi Order. Ben makes many decisions that are Sith like. During the Dark Empire days, Luke worked for the cloned emperor as his Sith apprentice. Jaina Solo had her brush with the dark side during the Yuuzhan Vong war.

What is enjoyable about the Legacy of the Force series is that the good guys seem to be losing on all fronts. The political situation seems to get worse. The Jedi are again spread thin. There is ideological dissension amongst the Jedi ranks. The Sith are causing trouble. The Galactic Alliance can't seem to hold it together. Allston leaves the reader with many questions.

There are two downsides to the book. One is the fact that Alema Rar lives yet again. How crippled can someone get after several losses in lightsaber duels. After the battle in the last issue, one would think that Lady Lumiya was dead. She is almost there. Her Force powers are just too powerful. She can control and influence people from several parsecs away. Even Palpatine did not have this power. I understand her role in all of this, but I find her to be too powerful.


Amadeo said...

I was glad the Wedge's daughter finally put it out there that someone was intentionally manuvering to take the Skywalker-Solo clan out of the picture...I mean it's one thing to be humble but damn...ya'll been at the center of stuff in the galaxy for at least the last 60 years.

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