Lit A request from a novel hater.

Discussion in 'Literature' started by Big Bad Yoda Daddy, Sep 4, 2013.

  1. Trip Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 2003
    star 4
    i... have nothing to add actually that hasn't already been said.

    lit, i am so proud of your collective sense of taste.


    /wipes away a tear
    Last edited by Trip, Sep 4, 2013
  2. HWK-290 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 29, 2013
    star 2
    Very few people in this thread seem to have read the bolded bit. I'd reiterate most of the recommendations in this thread if you weren't just after a single novel.



    The Thrawn Trilogy is flawed. It's well-regarded for the introduction of some beloved characters and the nostalgia surrounding its status as an early work. Wouldn't really recommend it to a cynic I'm trying to convert.

    The Han Solo Trilogy is borderline pulp. If you like pulp, go for it. If not, stay away.

    NJO: Traitor is a big no-no for you personally. It's not a standalone; context is absolutely vital for this book, and you'll only find that context in the series it belongs to, which depending on who you ask ranges from "okay this is pretty cool" to "oh God this is fan-fiction quality". For a well-read individual into "high-level" literature, Traitor can also come off as very derivative. Again, not something I'd recommend to a cynic.

    Haven't read Darth Plagueis, Yoda: Dark Rendezvous or Shadows of the Empire yet, and I've only skimmed Shatterpoint.

    The X-Wing series is pure entertainment. They're enjoyable - and, in Wraith Squadron's case, funny - but not particularly thought-provoking. Note that there are no Jedi in these books. If you liked Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six, you'll like these. If you're after something more substantive, don't bother. Luke Skywalker and the Shadows of Mindor falls underneath this same category, by the way, save for the "no Jedi" bit. It also makes more of an effort to engage you.

    Novels I would definitely recommend: Revenge of the Sith and Kenobi. The former takes a poorly used screenplay and redeems it and its execution by way of competent writing. The latter drops a well-known figure of the franchise into a Western before delving into a character study set amidst a vivid cast.

    Novel that this thread could possibly come to a consensus on and therefore meet your criteria: Revenge of the Sith.



    If you were one of my friends, I'd hand you Wraith Squadron to read and refuse to speak to you until you'd done so.
    Last edited by HWK-290, Sep 4, 2013
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  3. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    What is Traitor derivative of specifically?

    I don't know about a cynic, but I know of people that read it devoid of context and were still able to pick up the basic pieces and follow the plot and felt it was worthwhile.
  4. instantdeath Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 2010
    star 5
    The OP should read Ruins of Dantooine, Jedi Trial and The New Rebellion.
  5. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    I was going to suggest the same but decided against it.
  6. DarthJenari Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 17, 2011
    star 4
    @HWK-290 has a point. The OP only wants ONE novel, that we can all agree on as being the best. I looked back through all the other posts and here's what everyone's offered up so far:

    Heir to the Empire-
    Dark Force Rising-
    The Last Command-
    Shatterpoint-
    The Paradise Snare-
    The Hutt Gambit-
    Rebel Dawn-
    Revenge of the Sith-
    Traitor-
    Dark Rendezvous-
    Darth Plagueis-
    Shadows of Mindor-
    Kenobi-
    I, Jedi-
    X-Wing Series-
    Spectre of the Past-
    Vision of the Future-
    Rogue Planet-
    Darth Maul: Shadow Hunter-
    Ruins of Dantooine-
    Jedi Trial -
    The New Rebellion-
    The Han Solo Adventures-

    @squir1y @dp4m @Jeff_Ferguson Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn @jmf4 @Revanfan1 @_Catherine_ @Barriss_Coffee @son_of_skywalker03

    I think we should each vote for one so we can reach some kind of consensus here.
  7. DarthJenari Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 17, 2011
    star 4
  8. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    This isn't going to end well with the temptation to vote for Ruins of Dantooine.
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  9. s65horsey Otter-loving Former EUC Mod

    Member Since:
    Jun 24, 2006
    star 7
    That's why I posted the 30th Anniversary results from a poll that the users did. That was the consensus. I already posted the top 10.
  10. _Catherine_ Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 16, 2007
    star 4
    Well if we're talking literary merit over light fun it's at the top of the list. Slow and boring doesn't necessarily mean bad.
    DigitalMessiah likes this.
  11. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    It's from the time when LucasFilm was trying to inject meaning into their novels, mostly with Rogue Planet and the NJO.
  12. VanishingReality Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 21, 2013
    star 3
    I got introduced into the Star Wars novels with Dark Lord: Rise of Darth Vader.
    (I know I'm not helping but I really like that book.)
  13. instantdeath Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 2010
    star 5
    You could simply it a lot further by removing novels that aren't the first book a series. Let us assume that the OP wants a standalone in the interest of seeing if he can enjoy a Star Wars novel. That cuts it down further.

    Also I was joking about my three previous recommendations and wouldn't wish those books on my worst enemy, much less someone I'm trying to convert. So, with those changes in mind, the list comes out to this.

    Shatterpoint
    Revenge of the Sith
    Dark Rendezvous
    Darth Plagueis
    Shadows of Mindor
    Kenobi
    I, Jedi (though one can argue whether this is part of a series or not. In either case, I wouldn't recommend it as a first novel)
    Rogue Planet
    Shadow Hunter

    My humble opinion is that Rogue Planet and Shadow Hunter should go right out. Both are great, but they're two extremes: one is a slow, thoughtful novel that's the epitome of divisive when it comes to SW books, one is a fun action thriller that's good, but not the best you'll find. I, Jedi is very steeped in the EU, so I wouldn't recommend that one first. Haven't read Kenobi yet, so I can't comment.

    For the last remaining novels standing, I'm gonna have to go with two options. Revenge of the Sith is IMO the most elegantly written Star Wars novel, and if the OP is looking for literacy above all else there should be no other option. It's also very accessible, as he's almost certainly seen the movie. However, if he's simply deadset on not reading a story he already knows (though I assure any skeptic that reading ROTS is an entirely different experience), I'd go for Yoda: Dark Rendezvous. Best depiction of Yoda ever, with some truly fantastic quotable dialogue.
    Last edited by instantdeath, Sep 4, 2013
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  14. HWK-290 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 29, 2013
    star 2
    I'm voting REVENGE OF THE SITH. Now you must all vote likewise, or else we won't be unanimous! Mwuahahahaha!

    It's such a hodgepodge that I barely know where to begin.

    It's like it takes the framework Alighieri's Inferno, pours on buckets of Western philosophy and Eastern mysticism, adds a drop of Socratic reasoning, borrows Gandalf for all of a single sequence, and throws in a couple of lightsabers and some magic Schwartz to boot. Traitor is the monomyth writ small.

    I love it dearly, and definitely consider it worthwhile, but I wouldn't call it original. Unique, yes.


    If you're looking for specific works, I'd rather take this up in private messaging than derail the thread.
  15. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    @instantdeath

    Darth Plagueis seems like it turns a bunch of books into a series, and a lot goes over the reader's head if those other books haven't been read. It's really no different than I, Jedi in that respect.
  16. instantdeath Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 2010
    star 5
    Darth Plageuis is an interesting case in that it works as both an introduction novel and one for people who have read everything. It ties the era together, yes, but I've heard of numerous people who reported it was a great introduction to the EU.

    Regardless, it's not my personal recommendation either. Darth Plagueis hints at so many other stories, where ROTS and DR are nicely self-contained and full of awesome.
  17. DarthJenari Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 17, 2011
    star 4
    Please let's just all vote and help our fellow Star Wars fan out. [face_praying]

    EDIT: We should be able to handle this without having to go and make a poll in another thread after all.

    Personally I think we should only recommend standalones, in which case i'd personally vote for the Revenge of the Sith Novelization.
    Last edited by DarthJenari, Sep 4, 2013
  18. aleja2 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 4, 2005
    star 2
    Neverwhere is very high on my favorite list of novels, too.

    So I'd recommend the Thrawn Trilogy: Heir to the Empire, Dark Force Rising and The Last Command. They're not Gaiman - what can be?! - but they share Neverwhere's sense of adventure, smart & tight plotting and fun twists. As for their ability to sway someone into Star Wars, they remain the bestselling books of the entire Expanded Universe, with over 15 million copies in print, and are pretty much responsible for the existence of the current EU. And they continue to rank in the top ten best selling Star Wars books for Kindle.

    If, on the other hand, you like Neverwhere mostly for the metaphysics and the themes of unseen/unknown forces shaping our lives, or if you are more of Prequel fan and don't really care about the Original Trilogy characters, then go with the Stover recommendations (minus Traitor).
  19. Big Bad Yoda Daddy Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 8, 2000
    star 4

    You've all been helpful, but this is perhaps the most in line with what I'm thinking. Thanks all, please continue.
  20. son_of_skywalker03 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 7, 2003
    star 4
    Honestly my previous, and thusfar up to this point, only, post in this topic is very true. Go to your local bookstore, see if they have some edition of Revenge of the Sith (you may find it standalone, or even collected with the novelizations of TPM and AotC), and read the opening to it. Shouldn't take long, it's only a few short pages. If that doesn't grip you into wanting to continue reading, I really don't know what will.
    ILNP, cdgodin, HWK-290 and 1 other person like this.
  21. HWK-290 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 29, 2013
    star 2
    I'm very much in support of this. I'm tempted to quote in spoilers a small section of that excellent opening. Instead, I'm going to refrain from doing so unless specifically requested. But... it was so artistically done.
    Last edited by HWK-290, Sep 4, 2013
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  22. Force Smuggler Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 5
    ROTS hands down. The epigraph on the first page and what my sig has part of and the prologue Age of Heroes is simply the best chapter in Star Wars.
  23. BigAl6ft6 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2012
    star 4
    I love the Sith novel as well, but does anyone notice the fight above the Invisible Hand takes up, like, a huge chunk of the book and by the time they hit the end they seem to be rushing through the narrative compared to how what is about 13 minutes of movie makes up almost a third of the book.

    There's a ton of cool stuff in there to make up for it in just the small moments after that, but I find the pacing of the novel a bit odd considering how in depth it is at the front-end.
  24. Force Smuggler Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 5
    Stover totally could have made this book almost a 1000 pages I'd bet. Overkill? Perhaps.
  25. DigitalMessiah Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Feb 17, 2004
    star 5
    What about the droid attack on the Wookiees?