I'm reading the Del Rey novels dealing with the Clone Wars (between episodes II and III) in chronological order. Except that I skipped the first one, because as much as I'm willing to swallow my expectations and generally higher standards in return for a trip into the Star Wars milieu, I stopped reading novels with titles like "Republic Commando: Hard Contact" ... well, actually, I never started reading novels like that. Also, I think that book is just a video game tie-in.
So the first one I'm reading is "Shatterpoint", which in retrospect probably has a plot similar to the Commando book. This novel opens with Mace Windu (and for better or mostly worse, I cannot picture him without Samuel L. Jackson's voice, and that's annoying) learning that his old padawan, a female Jedi named Depa, has been involved in some unethical warfare (e.g. torturing and slaughtering civilians) on Mace's old home planet, a jungle world.
Depa has sort of morphed into the guy from "Heart of Darkness", driven mad by the jungle and all that she has had to endure, so Mace goes to find out what is going on and extract her. He lands in the middle of an insurgency. The local government is trying to suppress the native population with the help of Dooku's Confederacy, and Depa has gone native with the help of Kar Vastor, a force-using warrior who viciously leads the insurgency. Vastor's ability is explained by the fact that the natives of Mace's world are descendants of a ship full of Jedi that crashed there hundreds or thousands of years ago.
Eventually, Mace finds Depa and has to confront her and Vastor while also trying to resolve the ongoing conflict between the insurgents and the local government. The author (Matt Stover) is fairly inventive in the things Mace does, showing off new ways the Jedi can use the force, and the battle scenes are pretty good. The characterization is pure pulp and actually pretty embarrassing. And this book really doesn't advance the overall plot of the saga at all, other than to demonstrate the things Jedi are now having to go through thanks to their participation in the Clone Wars.Posted by Observer at April 24, 2005 04:06 PM
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