Friday, May 31, 2013

Review: Dawn of the Jedi: Into The Void by Tim Lebbon

I received an e-galley of this book for free in exchange for publishing my thoughts about it.
It is astounding the legacy of  one movie, that came out over 30 years ago can  create. The Star Wars Extended Universe of games, comics and novels really kept the force alive for legions of fans in the lean times between movies and trilogies. Now with Dark Horse Comics Dawn of the Jedi series of comics we get a glimpse into the foundations of the Jedi and the Force. Into The Void is a companion novel to the comic book series. However, based on fans reactions to this book  and sales, we may be seeing more books like this in the future.
This novel centers around Lanoree a Je’daii Ranger  . Like her name implies Lanoree has spent the last four years touring the settled worlds in her Peacemaker Class Cruiser. Lanoree has had several missions in the intervening years, mostly diplomatic, though she is not adverse to using lethal force when necessary.
Lanoree receives a communication from her home planet of Tython and finds She is needed at home for a difficult mission. A mission  that will stir up painful ghosts of her past and illuminate threats to the future of her entire brotherhood. All of these events converge around Lanoree’s brother Dalien, who as a child rejected all the teachings of the Je’daii order and paid for his decision with his life. Or did  he? All information points to Dalien being alive and in charge of a dangerous group. This groups actions threaten not only the balance on Tython but numerous galaxies yet to be discovered.
I really loved this book! One of the many gifts of the Expanded Universe is the ability to have more female characters. The original trilogy will always have a special place in my heart but it has been the expanded universe that has given me female characters to fangirl over :)
It’s really hard to tell from this cover but Lanoree also has a little diversity in her look. She is not Caucasian, which I feel is very important since Star Wars fans run the gambit in ethnicity and gender. Lanoree herself is such a great character. She has a wonderful balance of strength and vulnerability. Things are very different in her time since the dark and light energies of the force are allowed to flow equally in her training. She does not embrace anger or revenge but she is very insistent on eliminating threats to the balance of the force.
Tim has a pretty tough job in this book. He has to encapsulate the history of a culture 36,000 years before Episode IV and also connect the reader to the current storyline. He succeeds wonderfully by having chapters that share Lanoree and Dalien’s past while setting the stage for the siblings reunion. This book is very new reader friendly but I would recommend picking up this book:
This is a reprint book of the first five issues of the Dark Horse Comic. It doesn't contain any spoilers but it is a nice companion to the book. I hope to see more of adventures from Lanoree in the future, hopefully with Tim at the helm.

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