Tag Archives: chuck wendig

Review: Empire’s End (mostly) crushes the empire, finishes off Aftermath trilogy

Empire’s End finishes off the Aftermath trilogy with a satisfying conclusion for some, and even more questions for others! In other words, it’s a Star Wars novel in the year 2017.

I’ve found myself cooling a bit on the trilogy as time goes on. Not enough that I won’t still recommend it, but simply as a function of the timing involved. When Aftermath was released, we were months away from The Force Awakens, and in the fever-pitch of anticipation. Anything was a possible hint! Life Debt came out months after, and we had a better idea of what to expect. And now, Empire’s End, when we’re just barely starting to ramp up to The Last Jedi. And I’m finding my old intertrilogy/original character apathy begin to creep in, a little.

Which is not to say Empire’s End is a bad read, mind.

A continued lack of spoilers beneath the cut. Continue reading

Star Wars out this week: Empire’s End

Out Tuesday is Chuck Wendig’s Aftermath: Empire’s End, the final book in the new canon’s first trilogy. The Norra Wexley and Rae Sloane double-sided poster are exclusive to the Barnes & Noble hardcover.

Already out and about are two excerpts and a reveal, while Lucasfilm editor Jennifer Heddle offers six reasons to be excited about the book. Look for my review tomorrow.

First blurb for Aftermath: Empire’s End

Chuck Wendig’s Aftermath: Empire’s End, the third and final book in the post-Return of the Jedi trilogy, now has a blurb:

As the final showdown between the New Republic and the Empire draws near, all eyes turn to a once-isolated planet: Jakku.

The Battle of Endor shattered the Empire, scattering its remaining forces across the galaxy. But the months following the Rebellion’s victory have not been easy. The fledgling New Republic has suffered a devastating attack from the Imperial remnant, forcing the new democracy to escalate their hunt for the hidden enemy.

For her role in the deadly ambush, Grand Admiral Rae Sloane is the most wanted Imperial war criminal—and one-time rebel pilot Norra Wexley, back in service at Leia’s urgent request, is leading the hunt. But more than just loyalty to the New Republic drives Norra forward: Her husband was turned into a murderous pawn in Sloane’s assassination plot, and now she wants vengeance as much as justice.

But Sloane, too, is on a furious quest: pursuing the treacherous Gallius Rax to the barren planet Jakku. As the true mastermind behind the Empire’s devastating attack, Rax has led the Empire to its defining moment. The cunning strategist has gathered the powerful remnants of the Empire’s war machine, preparing to execute the late Emperor Palpatine’s final plan. As the Imperial fleet orbits Jakku, an armada of Republic fighters closes in to finish what began at Endor. Norra and her crew soar into the heart of an apocalyptic clash that will leave land and sky alike scorched. And the future of the galaxy will finally be decided.

We saw part of the Battle of Jakku in 2015’s Lost Stars. Empire’s End is due out in hardcover and eBook on February 21.

NYCC: Timothy Zahn says not to fear that Rebels is going to misuse Thrawn

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We’ve already covered the news out of Friday’s Star Wars writers roundtable at NYCC, but there was a decent lineup of current writers: Novelists Timothy Zahn, Chuck Wendig, James Luceno, E.K. Johnston, comic writers Kieron Gillen, Charles Soule, plus Lucasfilm editor Jennifer Heddle. Tor.com has a nice roundup of their comments.

Zahn reassured fans that the Thrawn on Rebels is not too far removed from the Thrawn of Legends. Johnston revealed that Ahsoka begins “about ten minutes—slight exaggeration—after Order 66 comes down.” And Wendig had some wise words about what makes Star Wars so appealing. (He also joked about Jar Jar being in Empire’s End, of course. But is it really that far-fetched? Really?)

Here’s the panel video:

Star Wars Story Talk: Rogue One trailer reaction video, SWCE, SDCC, & Aftermath: Life Debt

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We’ve got a jumbo episode of Star Wars Story Talk (AKA the show formerly known as Unboxing Star Wars) as Yowie the Skunk, Baby Jawa, and I cover a whole sandcrawler-load of the latest in Star Wars stories. Baby Jawa does her first reaction video, watching the Rogue One trailer, and Yowie and I talk a bit about Star Wars Celebration Europe, San Diego Comic-Con and review Aftermath: Life Debt, the new novel by Chuck Wendig! Plus a little update on Wear Star Wars Every Day, a visit from a Loth-cat, and of course some Baby Jawa fun time!


Quick reviews
→ Trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story – I am really excited for this movie and this trailer just pushes it up another notch. But how will Baby Jawa react to her first movie trailer viewing?
→ Star Wars Celebration Europe – Big thumbs up! A whole ton of fun and a lot of work. Plus seeing old friends and making new ones while in London!
→ Star Wars at San Diego Comic-Con – Even though there wasn’t a big movie panel, Star Wars still brought a lot to San Diego, including the Rogue One costume display and the publishing panel.
Star Wars: Aftermath – Life Debt – Chuck Wendig increases the scale and brings in some favorite film characters into the post-ROTJ era as the heroes help track down Han Solo as he’s disappeared while trying to liberate Kashyyyk. Solid read!
→ Loth-Cat Plush from Star Wars Celebration Europe – A big hit! Mrowwwl! Help me come up with a name for this grinning feline!

Mentioned on Star Wars Story Talk
On StarWars.com: Recent interviews with Chuck Wendig on Aftermath: Life Debt from Del Rey and Jarrett J. Krosoczka on Jedi Academy: A New Class from Scholastic.

Podcasts: Thanks to Coffee with Kenobi for having me on the podcast as a featured guest to talk Bloodline, Life Debt, and Wear Star Wars Every Day, and thanks to Skywalking through Neverland for bringing me on the show to discuss Wear Star Wars Every Day.

Salt Lake Comic Con: Check out my schedule at Salt Lake Comic Con (Sept 1 to Sept 3) or just view the general Star Wars-related programming, featuring Mark Hamill, Jeremy Bulloch, Lucasfilm Story Group members: Pablo Hidalgo, Leland Chee, and Matt Martin; also including Star Wars authors, artists, and voice actors, and the Full of Sith podcast crew: Bryan Young, Amy Ratcliffe, and Mike Pilot.

Get more info on Wear Star Wars Every Day or make a donation at GoFundMe or sign up to make a per-day pledge.

Note: Del Rey provided a copy of Life Debt: Aftermath (Star Wars) for review.

EUbits: Life Debt, cover art, and the end of Del Rey’s SWAT

Aftermath: Life DebtWe’re getting a second wind for Aftermath: Life Debt, with io9 having a new interview with author Chuck Wendig, and Lucasfilm’s Jennifer Heddle on 7 reasons to pick it up. From earlier, James’ Wendig interview on StarWars.com, Eleven-ThirtyEight’s Jay Shah on Leia and Rae Sloane and io9’s rundown of what we learned from the book.

→ There’s a cover art Q&A with Del Rey art director Scott B. on Star Wars book cover design, including concepts for Aftermath and Dark Disciple.

Del Rey is shutting down their Star Wars Action Team community, they announced via email Thursday. Fans could accumulate points for books and items (usually convention exclusives) by publishing reviews and other actions. The site will be up through August 31 for fans to earn and spend their reward points.

→ And finally, just for fun, I got to reintroduce people to the concept of Corran Horn sleeping with a sentient otter. Glorious. But seriously, today on the CJ Tumblr is dedicated to General Hux and his newly-revealed first name, because fandom is amazing and hilarious. (Yes, there will be Millicent. And a guest appearance by Thrawn.)

Review: Chuck Wendig’s Life Debt could help sell the Aftermath trilogy to doubters (maybe)

Aftermath: Life DEbtGood news for folks who had trouble with Chuck Wendig’s first Aftermath novel – the sequel, Life Debt is far more accessible. No, Wendig doesn’t change things up too much, but plotwise, the book is slightly more traditional. (Those who can’t move beyond his writing style, well… Good luck.)

It also helps that we’re well past The Force Awakens. The first Aftermath found itself targeted for a lot of things, but I think the most notable (and least discussed) was the burden of expectation. As the first important canon novel to tread into the newly-cleared territory after Return of the Jedi, it was bound to disappoint readers who thought they’d be getting Heir to the Empire 2.0 – or at least Truce at Bakura 2.0. The reality turned out to be something more off the beaten track and with Life Debt, we have a far better idea of what we’re getting.

With the ground laid in the first book, Life Debt gets off the ground quickly. Wendig is free to use (sparingly) characters like Han and Leia in the A-plot, which gives readers an anchor. But the majority of the action is still with the newer characters.

Minor spoilers, if that, behind the cut. Continue reading