Lit LTTP: Luke Skywalker and the Shadows of Mindor (may include spoilers)

Discussion in 'Literature' started by desh, Sep 6, 2012.

  1. desh Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 5, 2012
    So, I'm about 4 years late to the party, but I just read LSATSOM. I was somewhat underwhelmed by this book. I guess it was going for a somewhat campy feel, and I suppose it did that well, I just didn't find it all that entertaining. The space battles didn't do anything for me, and the only parts that I enjoyed were the sections from Luke's POV.

    I was surprised how little I enjoyed this book, considering how much I enjoyed Shatterpoint, and Stover's ROTS novelization is one my all time favorite EU books (only TTT surpasses it). I just loved Stover's depiction of Obi-Wan in ROTS, it brings a smile to my face every time I think about it. LSATSOM, on the other hand was a fairly simple story line and there just wasn't much to it.

    I have a couple of questions about some of the characters we see in LSATSOM:
    1) Is Blackhole (Cronal) introduced in a previous novel, or is he from something else?
    2) I was somewhat disappointed that Nick and Luke didn't get to have their discussion, does this happen later somewhere?

    I was going to ask if there was some backstory on Nick and/or Kar Vastor, but wookiepedia answered that for me: they were both in Shatterpoint! I don't seem to remember them in it, I guess I need to re-read that one again.
    AdmiralWesJanson likes this.
  2. instantdeath Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 2010
    star 5
    Shadows of Mindor was a deliberate departure for Stover from the tone he normally uses (particularly from his non-SW books, even if they all share the 'over the top' nature that permeates Mindor). I personally really liked it. Mindor makes me all the more curious to read his unpublished Flash Gordon book.

    As for your questions: Blackhole was introduced in a veeeery obscure comic back in the 80's (or at least it's obscure today), called Gambler's World. It's collected in "Classic Star Wars: The Early Adventures" if you're interested.

    And nah, Luke and Nick don't get to have the "long discussion". I was disappointed as well, and I was really wanting Mace to be namedropped, even if he sort of was. Interesting that Stover chose to leave Nick and Kar Vastor dangling plotlines, as well. Wonder if we'll get any sort of follow up. How awesome would it be if Vastor became one of Luke's Jedi?
    Last edited by instantdeath, Sep 6, 2012
  3. DarthBoba Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2000
    star 9
    Wonder if we'll get any sort of follow up.

    Who do you think the Mayor Of Sernpidal was? :p

    I really enjoyed Mindor as well. Beautiful hybrid of the Clone Wars and the post-Endor Civil War. Plus Fenn Shysa, a unique villain, Mandalorians being restored to coolness instead of whiny angst, LANDO, a volcano starship base, excellent Dark Empire quasi-backstory, and more in-universe mythology about Anakin Skywalker.
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  4. CooperTFN TFN EU Staff Emeritus

    VIP
    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 1999
    star 6
    How do you read Shatterpoint and not even remember who Nick and Kar Vastor are?
  5. DarthBoba Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2000
    star 9
    Speaking of Mace-thought it was interesting how Nick assumed Vader killed him, and that Luke didn't contradict it. Luke of course knows that Palpatine was the Big Bad, and I'd imagine it's common knowledge that Mace Windu was one of the Jedi who tried to kill Palpatine-the implication is there for Luke to make.
  6. instantdeath Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 2010
    star 5
    A character in a book I haven't read :p

    Also worth noting that Geptun, the film maker, was in Shatterpoint as well. Hence his line about knowing other Jedi in the past.
    Last edited by instantdeath, Sep 6, 2012
  7. Barriss_Coffee Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2003
    star 6
    One issue with this book was that, at least IMO, you sort of need to know who the characters are beforehand. I was thrilled to see Cronal return -- he's always been a loose thread in the EU. That said, I don't know if I would have appreciated the story as much if I didn't know Vastor or Blackhole beforehand. Or was familiar with the campiness of the old SW Marvels. I hate to admit it, but I probably wouldn't have liked it at all....

    This coming from someone who thought the novel was fantastic. It was practically a parody of the old EU. Which I think was lost on a lot of readers.
    Master_Keralys likes this.
  8. DarthBoba Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2000
    star 9
    Less parody and more homage, per Stover himself.
    Master_Keralys likes this.
  9. Zeta1127 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 4
    I suspect I will like LSatSoM just because it isn't the depressing and disrespectful nonsense we have been getting lately.
  10. DarthBoba Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2000
    star 9
    Yeah. It's like a better-written version of the Bantam novels. Plus it's easily the most Fleet Junkie book since X-Wing went on hiatus. Looking back it's the only recent book where the good guys aren't mostly going around in Star Destroyers.
    Master_Keralys likes this.
  11. Havac Some Guy Who Moderates Lit

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    It's beautifully written, captures not only the heroes but their heroism, is giant adventure fun while also being smart and philosophical, and it feels like pure Star Wars. If you didn't like it, I don't know what to do with you.
  12. Guinastasia Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2002
    star 6
    My reaction was "WTF was that?" I loved Stover's other novels, but I thought this one was just too out there to be believable.
    Reaper63 likes this.
  13. instantdeath Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 2010
    star 5
    Mindor does get pretty out there, but if you want a Stover mindf***, Blade of Tyshalle has got it squarely beat ;)
  14. desh Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 5, 2012
    Probably because I read it 5 years ago, and I vaguely remember the story at all. I went on a sort of Star Wars reading kick back then, when after reading Path of Destruction, I read Phantom Menace, Outbound Flight, Approaching Storm (worst EU book I've read so far), Attack of the Clones, Shatterpoint, Labyrinth of Evil, Revenge of the Sith (one of the best EU books I've read so far), and Rise of Darth Vader. So, it's very easy that those two characters simply got lost in the noise during my reading spree.

    As to those saying that it was like the older Bantam novels, I didn't catch that, but I haven't read a lot of Bantam novels, mostly just the Zahn books (which are my favorites), Shadows of the Empire, Rogue Squadron, and Truce at Bakura (also fairly forgettable). And while, I've read Rogue Squadron, I didn't really get into the x-wing books (started the second one, but didn't get very far), so most of the x-wing cameos in LSATSOM didn't do anything for me.
  15. instantdeath Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 2010
    star 5
    Kar Vastor telling Luke that he is greater than the Old Jedi Knights because, unlike they, he is "not afraid of the dark" was the highlight of the book for me. Hell, it was close to the highlight of entire EU for me.
  16. desh Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 5, 2012
    Yeah, that line was pretty awesome. Like I said earlier, I really enjoyed all the parts where it was from Luke's POV, the rest of it was just meh. The reason I liked ROTS novelization so much was how Stover wrote Obi-Wan; he just came across as a complete bad-ass without even meaning too. Basically Obi-Wan put all his faith into the Force, he never fought it, and it never let him down by it; I just loved reading about him so much. I wanted more of this insight into how Luke interacts with the Force in LSATSOM.
  17. instantdeath Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 2010
    star 5
    Definitely agreed, though I also think that Stover handled Han Solo very well. I may say that it's my favorite depiction of Han Solo even, or at least right up there with the Daley trilogy.

    And of course, he gets 1000 free points for mentioning Gallandro.
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  18. DuracellEnergizer Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 23, 2009
    star 3
    I started reading it, didn't like it, and ended up skipping all the non-Luke/Shadowspawn related parts. Had it been written as a comic book miniseries, prior to May 19, 1999, it probably would have turned out a lot better, IMHO.
  19. desh Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 5, 2012
    Yeah, the Han Solo stuff was good, and the R2-D2 POVs were entertaining as well. It sounds like one of the big selling points of this book is all the references that are made, and unfortunately I didn't get most of them, e.g., I don't know who Gallandro is.
  20. jSarek VIP

    VIP
    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2005
    star 4
    Ten Reasons to Love LSatSoM:

    The return of Fenn Shysa.
    Lando's handling of the Mandalorians.
    R2-D2 as viewpoint character.
    Mindor/Mindar discrepancy retconned with beautiful simplicity.
    Related: Turning a corny aside from Courtship of Princess Leia into a powerful moment.
    Exploration of the implications of gravity manupulation technology.
    Aeonia Cantor.
    The Dark.
    The first serious toying with an unreliable narrator for a whole Star Wars novel.
    Stover ran with Abel Peña's idea that Cronal, Blackhole, and Shadowspawn are the same person ... and yet, they're not. Huh? Read it.
  21. jedimaster203 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 19, 1999
    star 4
    Caine's Law is a bigger mindscrew...to the point where when I read it the first time I immeditely started re-reading it.

    Anyways, I loved Mindor. I am a hugely unabashed Stover fanboy, though. Every star wars novel he has written has contained sentences that have literally given me goosebumps. Reading Ganner's Last Stand in Traitor was the first time this had ever happened to me, but Mindor definitely had similar moments.

    I definitely think that Stover needs to step back into the EU...but he's a slow writer. One of the reasons why Mindor never got an audiobook, by Stover's account, was that he was so late turning in the manuscript. They didn't get a lot of time to do anything with it before the scheduled release date.
    Master_Keralys likes this.
  22. JackG Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 15, 2011
    star 4
    It's been three and a half years since Mindor and ten months since Tenebrous Way - I wonder what his next novel will be.
  23. jedimaster203 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 19, 1999
    star 4
    Well, so far he hasn't been invited to write any more star wars. He did mention that he's been working on a couple of projects, but I don't think they're licensed works.

    He also just released Caine's Law in April.

    I'd really like to see him write a novel set in the Legacy Era.
  24. Darth_Calgmoth Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 7, 2006
    star 2
    The 'funny tone' of this novel is completely due to the unreliable narrator thing. We don't get a novel here, we get an propagandistic interpretation of events that happened within the Star Wars universe. The real events might very well have been much closer to 'Shatterpoint' than anything else.
  25. instantdeath Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 2010
    star 5
    Yeah, as much as I hate the idea of losing Stover, I also find I really like his original novels, so I suppose I'm okay with it. Stover doesn't seem like the type who wants to write the majority of his projects in a pre-existing universe. Obviously the absolutely ideal thing for him to do would be to write a Star Wars novel, then an original, than a Star Wars, and repeat the cycle, but that's pretty unrealistic... I doubt the publisher wants an author who will work so sporadically, especially since I imagine his novels don't sell well enough to justify that for them, despite fan reception of them.

    Everyone says that, but I honestly never got that impression. I got the impression that we were witnessing the "real" events, and the events that Luke described (meeting blades with Kar Vastor, taking Nick's girlfriend) were part of the terrible movie that Geptun had described.
    Last edited by instantdeath, Sep 7, 2012