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Star Wars: Dark Disciple Book Review

Star Wars- Dark Disciple Book

“Dark Disciple” is easily the best “Star Wars” novel since “Darth Plagueis.”

When “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” was tragically canceled, many major story arcs were left untold. Thankfully, a crucial storyline comprised of 8 unmade episodes has found a new home in the form of Christie Golden’s “Star Wars: Dark Disciple” novel.

“Dark Disciple” is certainly a ‘dark’ tale in the “Star Wars” universe. The story begins with the Jedi Council becoming disheartened by recent Separatist victories and Count Dooku’s atrocities in the Clone Wars. Knowing Dooku must be stopped, the Council shockingly asks an unorthodox lone wolf Jedi (Quinlan Vos) to do what they cannot- assassinate Count Dooku. Since Quinlan is no match for Dooku alone, the Council suggests Vos enlist former Dooku apprentice turned bounty hunter Asajj Ventress to aid him in his journey.

While bringing the Count Dooku hating Asajj on board is no easy task, Quinlan disguises himself as a fellow bounty hunter in order to win her trust. Slowly but surely, Vos and Ventress become an unlikely bounty hunting duo. More surprising than that is the fact that the two begin to develop romantic feelings for one another. Alas, the good times between Vos and Ventress are threatened when the dangerous assassination mission rears its ugly head. Will Vos and Ventress be able to survive? Is Ventress manipulating Vos or does she really love him? Will the dark side corrupt Vos? All of these questions will be explored throughout the tale.

Since we all know Count Dooku survives until Episode 3, his fate is not in question in this novel. What we don’t know, however, is where Quinlan Vos and Asajj Ventress end up as their fates have yet to be revealed. While you won’t know everything by book’s end, “Dark Disciple” still offers up major wrap-ups to portions of the “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” era.

What makes Christie Golden’s unmade episode adaptation so rewarding is that it literally has everything a “Star Wars” fan could want. There’s Jedi-Sith action galore, cameos by certain bounty hunters that will make fans very happy, beloved familiar locations, an emotional Shakespearean esque tragic romance that puts Anakin and Padme’s love story to shame, key appearances by Obi-Wan and Anakin, and, above all, a deep exploration of fan favorite characters Quinlan Vos and Asajj Ventress. To say you learn more about Vos and Ventress in this single book than their entire story appearances combined is an understatement. “Dark Disciple” is very much their story and it’s refreshing to see these intriguing characters get their due.

Perhaps the book’s greatest strength is that it further explores major concepts from the prequel era such as the shortcomings of the desperate and clouded Jedi Council, the evil power of the corruptible dark side, and a Jedi questioning his own journey and beliefs. By tackling these ideas, Golden gives the story a lot of weight which really sepearates it from a lackluster throwaway tale like “Heir to the Jedi.”

About the only downside to the story is that it runs a little long. The final act is a bit too drug out for my taste, but the end is so powerful that it makes the lengthy journey worthwhile.

Overall Thoughts: “Dark Disciple” felt like watching “Star Wars: The Clone Wars” again which is exactly what I was hoping for. The novel is very much an extension of the series and is essential reading for fans of that underrated show. Highly recommended.

Note: The back of the book contains an excerpt of the upcoming novel “Star Wars: Battlefront: Twilight Company” which ties in with the hotly anticipated forthcoming video game “Star Wars: Battlefront.”

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June 29, 2015 - Posted by | Book review | , , ,

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