Lit Star Wars Scholastic Books

Discussion in 'Literature' started by Rew, Feb 9, 2013.

  1. Rew Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 22, 2008
    star 4
    I noticed we don't have a discussion thread for the SW Scholastic line in general, so I figured I could set one up here.

    I've had most of the Scholastic books on my shelf for ages and have only now gotten around to reading them.

    Just finished Jedi Apprentice #1 last night--and LOL at how Qui-Gon Jinn doesn't even remotely resemble his movie counterpart. But then again, that was the only one not authored by Jude Watson. So I'll be reading JA #2 today, and hopefully it will improve on its predecessor.

    So what do you guys think about these books (Jedi Apprentice, Jedi Quest, Boba Fett, etc.)?
  2. Barriss_Coffee Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2003
    star 6
    I get the distinct impression that a lot of people in these parts aren't particularly fond of these books.

    I finally got around to reading the JA series (not JQ yet) about two years ago. They weren't OMG TEH AWESOME, but I don't think they were as ridiculous as some people have claimed. Several of them I actually liked, and they probably would have been great had they not been oversimplified for kids. Overall I thought the series was decent -- the books served their purpose developing that Qui-Gon/Obi-Wan bond, and I liked how there were tensions between the two from the start, which is what they needed to overcome to make their relationship stronger.

    For the most part my biggest issue with the series was the "filler" aspect of some of the stories. A lot of them were boring... heroes come in, save the day, yadda yadda yadda.

    The Boba Fett series though... now that. That was epic. Elizabeth Hand was like James Luceno for kids. So many random references, it's a pity they probably went over 99.99% of the readers' heads. The first two were by a different author so the tone was a little different, but they were OK.
    Last edited by Barriss_Coffee, Feb 9, 2013
  3. Force Smuggler Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 5
    The Jedi Apprentice series started 12 years before TPM. Of course Qui-Gon wouldn't be the same. The JA series was pretty good. The Anakin/Obi-Wan series was alright. The Last of the Jedi was amazing.
    pronker likes this.
  4. darthcaedus1138 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 13, 2007
    star 5
    These were my bread and butter as a kid. It's really my first exposure to the EU, and I have very fond memories of these books.
  5. SWpants Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2004
    star 4
    I love JA. It's my favorite children's series in the Star Wars 'verse.
    JQ is OK...Boba Fett is pretty "meh."
    Last of the Jedi is entertaining.

    I picked up the Darth Maul stand-alone that came out last year. That annoyed me because I don't believe in his brother, but the Maul parts weren't so bad.
  6. The Loyal Imperial Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 19, 2007
    star 6
    You were probably lucky, then: the Jedi Apprentice books were the best of the lot.
  7. LAJ_FETT Tech Admin and Collecting/Games Mod

    Administrator
    Member Since:
    May 25, 2002
    star 8
    I liked the Boba Fett books as well but I thought the last one seemed a bit rushed. The first book takes place alongside the events of AOTC and it helped flesh out the film and the adult novel.
  8. Shira_French_Cheese Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 20, 2010
    star 1
    The Jedi Apprentince books are alright, I guess, but like mentioned before they tend to be oversimplified. I really hate how Qui-gon and Obi-wan solve planetary crises and overthrow dictatorial regimes every week or so.
    Last edited by Shira_French_Cheese, Feb 9, 2013
  9. Team Padme Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 4
    My library has all of these books but I have never read em.

    Isn't the Rebel Force series also from scholastic?
  10. _Catherine_ Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 16, 2007
    star 4
    Jedi Apprentice - dry, dull, simplistic, repetitive, liked the Xanatos arc though
    Episode I Adventures - impossible to find, haven't read
    Jedi Quest - haven't read
    Star Wars Adventures - not great, occasionally quite stupid
    Boba Fett - pretty dire with a handful of bafflingly poignant moments
    TCW Secret Missions - haven't read
    The Last of the Jedi - haven't read
    Adventures in Hyperspace - never even heard of this
    Journal - well, the Darth Maul one was good
    Star Wars Missions - impossible to find, haven't read
    Rebel Force - haven't read
    Science Adventures - points off for the cliffhanger ending!
    Galaxy of Fear - best series ever
    Jedi Prince - oh
    Biography - only read the Darth Vader one but it was very decent
    JJK - pretty good for younger kids, loved them when I was little
    YJK - wait I don't think this is even Scholastic
  11. LAJ_FETT Tech Admin and Collecting/Games Mod

    Administrator
    Member Since:
    May 25, 2002
    star 8
    I'm pretty sure YJK wasn't Scholastic, but it was aimed at a similar age range.
  12. DarkEagle Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 10, 2009
    star 4
    Jedi Apprentice is one of my favorite series in the EU. Yeah, it has a younger target audience, but it's not that distracting. I really like how it shows the more "everyday" aspect (not fighting galactic wars or the Sith) of what Jedi do. The development of the Obi-wan/Qui-gon relationship is interesting in how it changes from the beginning to where they are slightly before TPM.

    I didn't find Jedi Quest to be as good, imo. Not quite sure as to why; maybe I don't like Anakin that much.

    I've only read the first 4(?) of Last of the Jedi, but it seems to be interesting so far. Focuses on characters introduced in the prior two series, so if you're interested in their fates check it out. Also: Inquisitors!
  13. Team Padme Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 4
    Well anyways, I read the first Rebel Force book and loved it!
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  14. cthugha Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 24, 2010
    star 3
    I read the first three books of the Boba Fett series and really enjoyed them... both for their integration into the overall EU and for the writing style. The first one is pretty much a rehash of AotC from the perspective of kid Boba, remarkable especially for the author's sincere and non-standard attempts to really portray a child's perspective. The second one, I think, had this amazing floating-in-deep-space scene that actually made me fear for Boba and his friend, even though I knew that at least Boba would survive it. So this one is definitely worth a try.

    I didn't really get into The Last of the Jedi, though... tried reading a few from the library, liked the Alderaan/Leia parts in one of them (can't remember which one), didn't like at all how they had to drag Dexter into that, and found the rest rather annoying. Though I have to say I started somewhere in the middle, so maybe I should give it another try from the beginning when I have the time. Is it worth it?

    After what @DarkEagle said, I guess I'll give Jedi Apprentice a try sometime. Rebel Force is also definitely on my reading list. And IDK if Galaxy of Fear was actually Scholastic, but yeah -- best series ever. Especially from the third or fourth book onward, when the overall plot picks up a pace.
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  15. DarkEagle Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 10, 2009
    star 4
    Honestly, I wouldn't recommend reading Last of the Jedi if you haven't read Jedi Apprentice and Jedi Quest. Pretty much every character is one from those series (Watson loves to reuse characters, which is kinda how Dexter ends up being used).
  16. SWpants Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 28, 2004
    star 4
    Galaxy of Fear is Scholastic?
    I love those. They're even mostly canonical. Fun horror!

    I haven't read Rebel Force because I don't see the point. don't we have enough out that focuses on the Big Three?
  17. JackG Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 15, 2011
    star 4
    I hated that Ferus survived into the Dark Times and then watched over Leia on Alderaan. :rolleyes: Just no, Jude Watson. We know he's your pet character but having him save the Supreme Chancellor, meet him as the Emperor, discover the identity of Darth Vader and discover the truth of the twins is too much.
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  18. Karohalva Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 27, 2008
    star 2
    I liked how Xanatos' name begins with X and ends with -os, being from Telos, which itself is a Greek word, and these can only mean that Telosians invented civilization. They would still be a great people too if it weren't for the Space Turks.
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  19. anakinfansince1983 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 4, 2011
    star 7
    If you don't like Anakin, you should love Jedi Quest. Watson can't stand Anakin either and Jedi Quest is pretty much her treatise as to how much she hates him. It reads like a bad fan fic.

    Generally I like Scholastic as a publisher, but I'm extremely disappointed in what it's done for Star Wars, especially the young readers section. Among the Star Wars material that I've searched for the K-5 elementary school library that I run, the Slaves of the Republic and Infinities comics are much better.
  20. GunganSlayer Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2013
    star 2
    If anything, I'll give Galaxy of Fear credit for really awesome covers, lol:

    [IMG] [IMG]
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  21. cthugha Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 24, 2010
    star 3
    Well, Xanatos is obviously thanatos, which means "death" (IIRC). Telos... goal or end point?
  22. Rew Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 22, 2008
    star 4
    So I've finished the first five JA books (heh, they don't last long). I have to say, I do like Watson a good bit more as an author than Wolverton--he seemed he really didn't know where he was going with things in JA #1.

    But yeah, I agree with most of the posts in this thread that the JA series isn't exactly fantastic or exceptional, but it's just engaging enough. There's enough variety and marginally interesting characters to keep me going. (I admit, I really loved Guerra and his family. "Not so, I lie! Okay so, I tell the truth." I'm bummed Watson didn't stick with them after Phindar.) I also think these books are just the right length too. They're long enough to have a decent plot, but anything longer than these novella-sized books, and it would become boring filler.

    Anyway, I'm really quite surprised at the ending of #5. I wasn't expecting it to go down that way. OMG WILL OBI-WAN LEAVE THE JEDI FOREVER??? I JUST DON'T KNOW HOW THIS WILL TURN OUT! :p
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  23. pronker Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 28, 2007
    star 3
    Laughing at this - yes, Watson loves him to pieces - he pops up in Rebel Force, too, which is by Alex Wheeler - so, borrowing from _Catherine_ ... *and using only the ones I've read*

    Jedi Apprentice - oh, my, first found out about these in '05 and drove ridiculous distances to find the few remaining copies in various bookstores; quite happy with the series, though it got repetitive at the end, #17, I think, was especially showing creator fatigue

    Jedi Quest - followed this at each publication, enjoyed the general arc of the two of them being close, drifting apart and then its stunning ending

    Boba Fett - Hand's writing was okay, but I can't get too interested in Boba in books *dodges thrown shoes* though in TCW he's engaging

    The Last of the Jedi - loved it. Yup, Ferus Olin is The Man, and I was touched by the ending.

    Journal - Princess Leia's was really good, and so was Anakin's; Maul's was okay.

    Rebel Force - Enjoyed this quite a lot, especially the dynamics between the Big Three, particularly since I've not followed any post-ROTJ series except NJO. Those other series seem awfully depressing.

    Galaxy of Fear - Read 2 or 3 of these unique stories, would like to find more, but oh well - they're rare as dodos, even in thrift store book sections

    YJK - I'm reading them out of order - the kids seem okay, the writing is, well ... not Watson, but fair.
  24. Lugija Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 3, 2009
    star 4
    What I enjoy when reading the Jedi books is that they are quick reads, so they can show many different worlds and politics. And Watson really doesn't see the need to have a happy ending in every one of them. In JQ #5 which I just read Obi-Wan spent most of the book trying to find the connection between a senator he doesn't like and the criminal group, when that just slows down his search of the group. When he lets go of the senator, he starts to get results. Anakin infiltrates the group but thinks that they do good job in overthrowing dictators, and can't see that they are all manipulated by the "victim". Only his Jedi skills saved him from being killed and the end result was that the Jedi really made the mess of everything and the only reason the group didn't get away was that they were not cold-blooded enough to kill civilians.
    In another novel the Jedi find the villains but can't gather enough proof, and the judges are all bribed anyway, so the evil senators get away and their defender gets promoted. Just another day in a corrupt galaxy.

    But Jedi Apprentice #17 and #18 were disappointments, since for some reason after writing two major three-book-arcs she finishes the series with two stand-alones which are really not memorable. I haven't read anything else than JA and JQ and those I started to read as a child so they will always have rose-tinted classes.
  25. Rew Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 22, 2008
    star 4
    So I'm beginning JA book 7, have read the summary blurb on the back, and I'm sorry, I just have to say this: There is an assassination attempt on Yoda's life, and all the Jedi are super-duper worried. Um, okay. Why is anyone who's ever interacted with Yoda the least bit anxious about this? THIS IS MASTER FRIGGIN' YODA WE'RE TALKING ABOUT HERE.

    It would be like walking into Hogwarts to try to kill Dumbledore.* Or walking into the Fortress of Solitude to kill Superman. Infiltrating the Batcave to try to kill Batman. Or going wherever Goku lives to try killing Goku.

    I mean, if I were at the Jedi Temple and learned there was a hit on Yoda, I wouldn't worry or lose my **** over it. I'd simply be like, "LOL, okay, good luck with that," step back, and laugh as Xanatos or whoever it is got their royal dark-side ass handed to them while Yoda barely lifts a green gnarled finger.

    Okay, snark over. Time to read the actual book now. :p

    *Dumbledore was only killed in HP6 because he planned to die that way.
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