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Star Wars: The High Republic: Into The Dark Book Review

“Star Wars: The High Republic: Into The Dark” is a rare misstep for Claudia Gray.

Master Jora is off to a new position at the Starlight Beacon and her Padawan Reath is following suit alongside Jora’s former Padawan Dez, a Wayseeker (Orla), and Master Cohmac on board a Byne Guild transport ship named Vessel (comprised of the pilot Leox, co-pilot Affie,and the mysterious rock alien Geode). Alas, their trip doesn’t go as planned when they encounter the great Hyperspace disaster which strands them in space. Eventually, they (and other stranded ships) make their way to an abandoned space station. Of course, the space station is not what it seems as it houses ancient relics, darkness, secrets, and Byne Guild mysteries. Moreover, it seems that certain groups have big plans for this space station which could prove to be detrimental to the Republic.

As of right now, Claudia Gray is arguably the best author in the SW game so it’s a bummer that “Star Wars: The High Republic: Into The Dark” is her first canonical novel to fall flat. It starts out ambitious enough as it introduces new Jedi characters, further explores the villainous Nihil, sets up a space station mystery, and elaborate on the High Republic universe. Alas, all of that intrigue gets lost in this overlong novel that is far too plot driven and contains too many scenes of characters pondering decisions or running around a space station. It would be one thing if the reader wanted to journey with these characters, but I can’t say I ever connected with any of them. Characters like Nan and Dez felt more like plot points than fully fleshed out characters. The only character that had a genuine arc here is Reath- a young bookworm Padawan who undergoes quite a lot throughout the course of this book. You can make a case for Orla and Cohmac having major arcs too, but the overly choreographed flashback story really doesn’t add enough to their characters. Again, it’s more story driven than anything else. It’s a shame as 

Perhaps it’s unfair to compare it to “Star Wars: The High Republic: Light Of The Jedi,” but the story also lacked the intensity and weight of the novel that kicked off this whole new era. It often feels more like a concept for a “Doctor Who” tale with the space station setting, all the running around and the inclusion of the plant creatures (no spoilers about that). Don’t get me wrong, I love “Doctor Who,” but it’s a very different universe than “Star Wars.”

February 24, 2021 - Posted by | Book review | , ,

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