Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Invincible (Star Wars: Legacy of the Force, Book 9)

Invincible (Star Wars: Legacy of the Force, Book 9)

By Troy Denning
Book Review by Dan Tres Omi

When George Lucas allowed several authors to pen the numerous books for the Yuuzhan Vong war (the New Jedi Order – NJO), there were so many problems. While there was a strict adherence to continuity, the flow would sometimes stifle or pick up depending on who was writing. Sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn't. With so many books, several plots and subplots were neatly finished. One would have never expected Jacen Solo to turn out the way he did. If anything, readers were left either hating or somewhat tolerating Jacen Solo. What made the NJO series special was that it allowed the reader to really explore the nuances of the Force.

In the Legacy of the Force (LOTF) series, there were only nine books with three authors. Like the NJO, the LOTF would ebb and flow. Some books were right on while others were just plain bad. Troy Denning had his work cut out for him. I expected the book to be as big as “The Unifying Force” by James Luceno. Yet it was only a scant 299 pages and the book moves very quickly.

I was glad that Denning places the reader in the Mandalorian defense of the Verpine mining asteroid of Nickel One in the Roche system. The Verpine and the Mandalorians have a treaty that began in the early part of the LOTF series. Boba Fett wanted to honor it even if it meant fighting against the Imperial Remnant. Fett was definitely out of his league and expected a massacre. It is good to see Fett in a situation that calls upon all of his resources. The Mandalorians get their beskar'gam handed back to them. I assumed that Denning would have left them out since that is Karen Traviss' realm.

Jaina Solo is in the front with Fett and his granddaughter Mirta Gev. She splits with the Mandalorians and meets up with the Jedi Council who agree that someone should be sent to kill Jacen Solo/Darth Caedus. Everyone agrees that Jaina should be the one to do it. It takes two tries but Jaina is finally successful. Both battles are worth the price of admission. Darth Caedus uses all of his Force ability and even pulls out the Shatterpoint technique last used by Master Mace Windu. The reader will also see the Moffs in action once again.

The drawback that takes so much away from the book is the ending. The galaxy is pretty much in shambles. The Bothans have sided with the Corellians. Admiral Niathal, who defected with bits of the Fourth Fleet, joins up with the Jedi, the Wookies, and the Hapes Consortium. The Mandalorians are for themselves and the Verpine. The Imperial Remnant is maintaining an unsteady alliance with Darth Caedus. Politically there is no one shot solution that would keep everyone happy. While killing Darth Caedus is a good idea, what to do afterward is never considered. Denning tries in the last twenty pages. To be honest, this would have been done more thoroughly in a separate series. Unfortunately, the Sith that the late Alema Rar found are not even mentioned.

We do see how the galaxy is set up to be the way it is in Cade Skywalker's time. There is a new found hostility towards the Jedi since many people are beginning to place blame on the Jedi Order. The galaxy is still in an uneasy alliance. I think that every reader knew that Darth Caedus was going to be killed. It's the way of the Sith. No matter how powerful a Sith Lord becomes, someone comes along and takes them out. One would think that the Sith would figure that out by now and try something entirely new.


Amadeo said...

When in context with Cade's series it was ok...but it did end up rushing through.

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