It’s apparently Rebels week in releaseland, as we have the paperback edition of John Jackson Miller’s A New Dawn out on Tuesday. The hardcover dropped back before the show had even aired, so I expect the story of how Hera and Kanan met will find more of an audience now. James liked it! And hey, it’s John Jackson Miller, hard to go wrong there.
For those already all in on Rebels lit, Marvel launches their fourth Star Wars title Wednesday with Kanan: The Last Padawan #1. It’s also a Rebels prequel, and Marvel’s first foray into the prequel era. StarWars.com has a five-page preview.
Jedi Bibliothek spotted an extended blurb for Christie Golden’s Dark Disciple at Random House. The Asajj Ventress and Quinlan Vos story is based on unproduced scripts from The Clone Wars
The only way to bring down the dark side’s most dangerous warrior may be for Jedi and Sith to join forces.
In the war for control of the galaxy between the armies of the dark side and the Republic, former Jedi Master turned ruthless Sith Lord Count Dooku has grown ever more brutal in his tactics. Despite the powers of the Jedi and the military prowess of their clone army, the sheer number of fatalities is taking a terrible toll. And when Dooku orders the massacre of a flotilla of helpless refugees, the Jedi Council feels it has no choice but to take drastic action: targeting the man responsible for so many war atrocities, Count Dooku himself.
But the ever-elusive Dooku is dangerous prey for even the most skilled hunter. So the Council makes the bold decision to bring both sides of the Force’s power to bear—pairing brash Jedi Knight Quinlan Vos with infamous one-time Sith acolyte Asajj Ventress. Though Jedi distrust for the cunning killer who once served at Dooku’s side still runs deep, Ventress’s hatred for her former master runs deeper. She’s more than willing to lend her copious talents as a bounty hunter—and assassin—to Vos’s quest.
Together, Ventress and Vos are the best hope for eliminating Dooku—as long as the emerging feelings between them don’t compromise their mission. But Ventress is determined to have her retribution and at last let go of her dark Sith past. Balancing the complicated emotions she feels for Vos with the fury of her warrior’s spirit, she resolves to claim victory on all fronts—a vow that will be mercilessly tested by her deadly enemy . . . and her own doubt.
Well, that’s an unexpected turn for this book. (…Or is it?) Hopefully Golden’s take romance here is less winceworthy here than what we saw in Fate of the Jedi…
Dark Disciple will be out in eBook and hardcover on July 7.
It’s not the first time Star Wars has featured LGBT characters, but an upcoming novel will be the first to introduce one into Star Wars canon as it now stands.
Paul S. Kemp’s Lords of the Sith, out in April, features Moff Mors, a lesbian and “Imperial who has made some very serious mistakes but is an incredibly capable leader and spends much of the book working hard to prevent absolute failure,” Bryan Young at Big Shiny Robot reports.
“There should be diversity in Star Wars,” Del Rey editor Shelly Shapiro told Young for Full of Sith. And what more is there to say than that?
Kevin Hearne’s Heir to the Jedi brings a lot of firsts, as far as Star Wars novels go. It’s the first of the new canon novels to feature one of the big three characters; the first Star Wars first-person novel* to feature an actual movie character, and the first canon novel to be set after A New Hope. It’s also the first of the new novels I actually had any interest in reading.
Now, I don’t expect a Star Wars novel to rock the very galaxy, particularly when set in a movie-limited era like this one is. I wasn’t expecting a game-changing book by any means. And generally, I don’t mind a quieter story, as long as it’s an engaging one that keeps me wanting to read.
Unfortunately, Heir to the Jedi delivers an unremarkable tale that fails to make much of an impression. From the first-person conceit to the title that seems deliberately reminiscent of Heir to the Empire, it seemed to me like the book was writing several checks that it completely failed to cash.
Remember way back in 2009, when LucasBooks announced that the Fate of the Jedi paperbacks reprints would be in the slightly taller premium paperback format – and then changed their minds? Well, it seems like it’s just as well, because now it gives Del Rey a quick, easy way to make the canon novels stand out among the piles of Legends when they come out in paperback. The A New Dawn paperback, due out late next month, will be the first, but Tarkin and Heir to the Jedi have all been listed with the new format.
The premium paperback issue was rather controversial back in the day, but it seems that EU fans have bigger fish to fry these days. Below, a picture I took in 2009 to show the differences between trade paperback (The Clone Wars: Wild Space,) premium paperback (Stephen King’s Just After Sunset) and mass market paperback (Dark Force Rising.)
Marvel solicitations for April are out. (Hattip to @DarthSpiriah.) It includes Kanan: The Last Padawan #1 (which has a little art peek at StarWars.com,) but the real curiosity may be Princess Leia #3 – or rather, the second woman on the cover. Some are suspecting it’s Winter, a Legends character it would make sense to bring back given that we know the miniseries is dealing with Alderaan, but I wouldn’t say no to a brand-new lady pilot. Either way, we’ll find out in April. UPDATE: She’s a new character.
And depite the million or so copies in circulation, Star Wars #1 is going back for a second and third printing. In CBR’s latest Axel’s In Charge Q&A, Marvel Editor-in-Chief Axel Alonso talks a bit about Star Wars #1 and the line in general. On that note, Darth Vader #1 is looking like it’ll sell more than 200,000 copies.
The first new Star Wars of 2015 is Marvel’s flagship Star Wars #1 on Wednesday. It features an utterly insane number of variant covers and sales to match.
It’s not the only Marvel release this week either, per Diamond. There’s also the first volume of Star Wars: The Original Marvel Years, an 880-page hardcover that collects Star Wars #1-44 and the series’ first Annual. Amazon lists it as coming out January 27, but your comic shop may have it Wednesday.
Speaking of January 27, that’s when Joe Schreiber’s Darth Maul: Lockdown will come out in paperback. Our first new (and canon) novel of the year, Kevin Hearne’s Heir to the Jedi, will be out March 3.