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Lit Finished the Legends Novels

Discussion in 'Literature' started by JABoomer, Mar 28, 2016.

  1. JABoomer

    JABoomer Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Oct 23, 2009
    [​IMG]

    Yesterday I finished reading Maul: Lockdown. It was the final adult novel for me to read in what was the Star Wars Expanded Universe, now Star Wars Legends. 153 novels .. read over a period of 20 years. I have collected them all now, and you can see them above in Legends chronological order.

    My first memory of a star wars novel was not reading one. The local bookstore was not far from the house I grew up in. We would walk by it frequently on our way downtown. I can remember seeing the cover of X-Wing: Wedge’s Gamble on the book rack that was displayed just outside the door to the store. The cover had me enthralled, it was exciting! However at the age of 11, a 300 page book filled exclusively with words wasn’t exactly thrilling to me haha. My favorite book to that point was the Essential Guide to Vehicles and Vessels.

    The next year while eating my Cheerios for breakfast and looking at the back of the cereal box, as they sometimes had games you could play printed there. I discovered an advertisement for Shadows of the Empire. Again I was so very intrigued. I had been hooked on Star Wars for many years at this point, having rented on VHS and watched one of the original trilogy at least once a month until I got the trilogy for Christmas one year! So the prospect that there was new stories and adventures out there in the galaxy far, far away was mind blowing.

    On the inside of the cereal box was a coupon cut-out. You sent it in and they would mail you a copy of Shadows of the Empire. I’m sure at this time I didn’t know it was a novel. My Mom helped me with the mailing process, and a few weeks later the novel arrived. I was probably disappointed that it was a “word” book when I got it, but the front cover was sure cool.

    My parents had struggled to get me to read throughout my early school years. What it turned out to be was actually a dislike of reading material that was of no interest for me. So when I finally decided that I would try and read this grown-up “novel” .. I loved it immediately. Yes it was reading, but it allowed your imagination to take over and participate in a story set in the Star Wars galaxy. Wow!

    From Shadows of the Empire I went through all the Star Wars novels contained in our public library. Much to the shock and delight of my parents I am sure. Next was the Thrawn Trilogy, followed by the Black Fleet Crises Trilogy and the Han Solo / Lando Adventures. Followed by the Corellian and Jedi Academy Trilogies.

    When I ran out of books in the library I would save my pennies and buy them at that local bookstore. The only Star Wars material in the high school library was the Jedi Price young readers’ series which I found too silly/boring at this point. I’ve never tried to read a young readers’ novel since then.

    I remember when the New Jedi Order series was announced and having a hard time understanding why they had to kill Chewie. However I also remember starting Victor Prime and realizing it was the same old Star Wars. I resisted the prequel novels for a bit, not enjoying them as much as post-Yavin material, but eventually got around to reading them all.

    My favorites include: The Thawn Trilogy – it’s just so Star Wars. The Black Fleet Crises Trilogy (aside from the Lando centric volume of chapters in Shield of Lies) – the 20-30 pages of fleet action contained at the end of Tyrant’s Test remains the best naval action in any of the novels, and they are one of only two sections of any of the books that I have re-read – the other being No Disintegrations, Please from Tales from the New Republic. Spectre of the Past and Vision of the Future were just so solid. Rebel Stand and Rebel Dream are two of the very few books that really captured me and that I finished in 3 days (when not on vacation), another one being Riptide – which I can’t explain because I wasn’t that into Crosscurrent. Honourable mentions go to Allegiance and Choices of One. I enjoyed the overall plot of Fate of the Jedi series (which is probably an unpopular opinion) even if some of the writing/editing seemed rushed.

    The worst of them has to be Planet of Twilight and The Crystal Star. Wow, I bet it took me six months to read The Crystal Star. Children of the Jedi and Darksaber weren’t that far ahead. The cover art for some of the novels in the 1990’s was amazing. The cover for The New Rebellion really caught my eye, although the novel didn’t live up to my hype surrounding the visuals. The most controversial books to me were The Force Unleashed and The Force Unleashed II as they attempted to squeeze in events into previously covered material like the founding of the Rebel Alliance. I’d just like to say I wish I had a thesaurus on hand when reading the Michael Reaves series Coruscant Nights haha.

    153 novels over 20 years. That works out to about one every month and a half. I didn’t read continuously throughout that period. I remember there were at least two year-long breaks from enjoying these novels. As a kid I can remember reading my Star Wars novels while listening to a Star Wars soundtrack on my Discman in the back seat of the minivan while on family road-trips. Reading in the bathtub on weekends, I can remember dropping X-Wing: Iron Fist right into the water, rescuing it, putting something heavy on it to try and keep its shape and letting it dry out – which it did. More recently on a vacation to Maui I would plow through several Fate of the Jedi novels a week. Mostly though, Star Wars novels allowed me to escape the day’s events by reading 20-30 pages in bed before I fell asleep. This was how the majority of those novels were read.

    These novels helped to get me through difficult times during high school, gave me a little bit of freedom while I worked so hard in university studying engineering for 5 years, and provided grounding from the “real world” and its many stresses during my mid/late twenties. The bottom line is these books have meant a lot to me.

    I may go back and re-read them at some point, maybe I will be able to share these with my children one day. But as of now I have a new chapter of Star Wars to begin, that being the new canon novels. As you can see I have re-ordered my collection to correspond to release date – as there are now two timelines.

    I’m sorry if you have read this and I have bored you. I am quite proud of this accomplishment and this is probably the only place where anybody will care or relate. These books have meant a great deal to me, what have they meant to you?

    [​IMG]
     
  2. StarLorrd

    StarLorrd Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Nov 18, 2014
    I think it's interesting that you do chronologcal order from the bottom up
     
  3. JABoomer

    JABoomer Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Oct 23, 2009
    Ha! Two reasons: the shelf is at eye level. So I thought I would fill the lower ones first. Second, the top shelf is slightly taller, allowing me to place book-ends to hold up the incomplete row (which I removed for the picture).
     
  4. PimpBacca

    PimpBacca Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Oct 4, 2015
    What did you think of Lockdown? I myself really enjoyed it. Once I was done I ended up giving my copy to the charity shop and instantly regretted it(no longer having the story not the money it would bring for the charity), so I went off and order myself another hard back copy from amazon. all in all it must of cost me about £40 buying the one book twice, But I thought it was worth it.
     
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  5. Stymi

    Stymi Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jan 10, 2002
    Pretty cool. But what about the YA books? Some, like the Jude Watson stuff, are quite good.

    But most impressive. I have not read them all...yet.
     
    Force Smuggler likes this.
  6. Cheerios4u98

    Cheerios4u98 Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 4, 2015
    Very awesome. I have a goal of reading every EU novel eventually. I wonder if I will ever actually accomplish it. I've read around 35 SW novels to date, but that includes a bunch of material from the new canon. The EU has my heart though. The EU is what turned me from a casual Star Wars movie fan to a massive Star Wars fan. The EU is what won me over, and the EU is still my favorite thing about Star Wars. I'm currently reading the novelization of The Empire Strikes back, and next on my list is Return of the Jedi (I hadn't read these two novelizations before) and then the Lando trilogy.
     
  7. Force Smuggler

    Force Smuggler Force Ghost star 7

    Registered:
    Sep 2, 2012
    I need to collect the YA books.
    Mine are in Chronological order but might move some of them to release order.
     
  8. JABoomer

    JABoomer Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Oct 23, 2009
    Really liked it.

    Funny enough it got saved for the last bunch of books because I wasn't sure I'd enjoy it. But then it got saved for the very last book because it was almost a guarantee I would like it more than the Clone Wars Gambit Duology, Ruins of Dantooine, Dawn of the Jedi, and The Old Republic: Annihilation. All of which were okay in the end, even Dantooine which was surprising. The worst was Clone Wars Gambit: Siege, as it started to drag on.

    You can tell if you'll like this book after one page. It's graphic, and very intriguing.

    I didn't think he did a great job introducing the characters at first, and I found myself flipping back to remember what the connection was between various characters. I got confused as to what exactly Maul, Sidious, and Plagueis each knew and what each were trying to accomplish. The concept of a transforming jailhouse was out there but not unreasonable. I laughed every time they brought up the nuclear device (shouldn't that be relatively low-end tech in the Star Wars galaxy?).

    That sounds like a lot of negatives, but I liked .. everything else. Overall I really enjoyed it. It has some great ideas, characters, and pacing. Plus Maul is a complete bad-ass.


    Well. Like I said I have read some of the Jedi Prince books a long time ago. I found them to be underwhelming. I haven't gone back to the young readers' novel pool simply because I haven't had to. Even now getting started on the new canon novels, the young readers stuff isn't very appealing even though I've heard some people say it's enjoyable.
     
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  9. Force Smuggler

    Force Smuggler Force Ghost star 7

    Registered:
    Sep 2, 2012
    The bolded. So true. Made the wait between movies much more bearable.
    4 movies for the last 17 years? I'd still be hooked on SW but books, games and comics multiple times a year? Heck yeah. Sign me up.
    EU knowledge has imprinted itself on my brain. It is as much SW as the movies are.
     
  10. Zeta1127

    Zeta1127 Jedi Master star 5

    Registered:
    Sep 2, 2012
    I would read everything, but there are just some things I have no desire to read. I started the LCA a few weeks ago, which is one of a fair number of things I still haven't read, especially of the original Del Rey books. I got through chapter 4 of the Mindharp of Sharu and have enjoyed it so far, especially the beginning of the first book managing to set up both itself and the sequel, but I have been too busy to continue.
     
  11. Jeff_Ferguson

    Jeff_Ferguson Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    May 15, 2006
    That post was amazing. Seeing every adult EU novel arranged like that on a bookshelf... really cool. I donated about 95% of my SW novels over the last few years, but seeing so many of them in that picture (even just seeing their spines) brings back memories of how much they once meant to me. Your bookshelf is a labour of love, and you're damn right that this is the place where people will care and relate.

    The EU is vast beyond belief, but the adult novels were the core of it for me, and I'm sure for many of us, for a long time. I read Shadows of the Empire in 1996 but didn't pick up a SW comic for nearly another ten years. The adult novels were the EU.

    Great post.
     
  12. Havac

    Havac Former Moderator star 7 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Registered:
    Sep 29, 2005
    Lockdown was also the last EU novel I read. It was . . . typical of the last era of EU, I guess. I suppose it's better than having Crucible be the last EU I ever read.
     
  13. blackmyron

    blackmyron Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Oct 29, 2005
    I went out on Mercy Kill. I figured that was a fitting end - closing out Allston, the X-Wing series, and the EU in general for me.
     
  14. Jeff_Ferguson

    Jeff_Ferguson Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    May 15, 2006
    I didn't read Plagueis until a couple years after it came out, so I guess it was my last EU novel, save for a recent Mindor re-read. Plagueis was a good way to go out.

    Then again Tarkin was pretty much an old-EU book. ;)
     
  15. IG_2000

    IG_2000 Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Aug 5, 2008
    This is actually how I visually imagine a year. January is on the right and December is on the left. Never understood why.
     
  16. JediMatteus

    JediMatteus Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Sep 16, 2008

    i have them all too. they meant a lot to me as well.
     
  17. SensationalSean

    SensationalSean Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Dec 19, 2014
    Amazing post, your experience of the EU is similar to my own. I haven't read all of them, but I still feel that the novels represent SW just as much as any other part of the franchise.


    Crystal Star is one of the few I skipped (because I heard it was terrible), but I have vivid memories of reading Planet of Twilight and just wanting it to end. The cover is nice though.
     
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  18. Iron_lord

    Iron_lord Chosen One star 10

    Registered:
    Sep 2, 2012
    I don't see the Dark Forces Trilogy there - I'd say those qualify as novels rather than comics - even though there's pics in them.
     
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  19. JABoomer

    JABoomer Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Oct 23, 2009
    To each his own. Although the Dark Force Trilogy are listed as adult novels in the Wookiepedia Legends timeline, my 153 novels are those listed in the Legends timeline printed in the front of each novel for the past 10 years or so. Not knocking the young readers' novels, young adult novels, or novellas but like I said I haven't gotten into them yet.
     
  20. ConservativeJedi321

    ConservativeJedi321 Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Mar 19, 2016
    Jeez, it's these kinds of threads that make me wonder if we Star Wars fans need to get a life...




    Nah, I i'm happy being on here all day every day, I got nothing better to do.[face_hypnotized]:-B
     
  21. A Blind Prophet

    A Blind Prophet Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 25, 2016
    i've read all but a few of the prequel novels, and i've not regretted any of them. i've always wanted to do a read through of literally everything, all the comics, YA novels, etc, in chronological order. i started it and made it to approximately the TOR era, and kinda just petered out because there's just so many characters that i just don't care about during that era. it's a little frustrating honestly, but i'm hoping to start up on it again and finish plowing through it.

    congrats though, that's not something many people have done.
     
    JABoomer likes this.
  22. JABoomer

    JABoomer Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Oct 23, 2009
    It would be a little less daunting now, because the Legends timeline is a finite and quantifiable thing now. Unless Disney runs out of ideas and starts cranking out new Legends material. Before the new canon was announced you'd feel like you were never making any headway with all the new material coming out.

    Has anyone actually read the entirety of Legends material before?
     
  23. A Blind Prophet

    A Blind Prophet Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 25, 2016
    yea, that was part of the problem. but it's also a little annoying knowing that there are storylines that aren't going to ever be finished as well. in a way, i still wish they'd just killed off luke, leia and han in crucible. would have made it an actually fitting ending.
     
    Cheerios4u98 likes this.
  24. Iron_lord

    Iron_lord Chosen One star 10

    Registered:
    Sep 2, 2012
    Don't know about the entirety - there's a few comics I've never read (plus a lot of Roleplaying Game material) - but I have read all the adult novels, most of the comics, and a few of the junior novels.
     
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  25. Ackbar's Fishsticks

    Ackbar's Fishsticks Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Aug 25, 2013
    Likewise. I would always have been a Star Wars fan, but nowhere near to this degree if all I had to go on was the three movies. The fact that there was such a massive universe to explore is what really got me hooked, and to this day I think if I ever really had to think of what my favorite Star Wars story was, I'd come up with something from the books and not the movies. Also helps that my introduction to Star Wars was a book not a movie (the Incredible Cross-Sections, which an aunt got me for Christmas not realizing that I'd never seen a Star Wars movie, because she just thought for sure that it was the kind of thing I'd be into - as it turned out she was right).

    The moment I really realized how integral the EU was to my Star Wars was when I did my last movie marathon a few years back, and found that I was getting more worked up about Wedge Antilles' few moments onscreen than I was about any of the main characters.