The JC Lit Reviews Special: FATE OF THE JEDI: VORTEX (Spoilers)

Discussion in 'Literature' started by Havac, Dec 4, 2010.

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  1. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Behold, the latest Fate of the Jedi entry: Vortex!

    Some rules: rate Vortex on a scale of 1 to 10, supplementing your rating with a review, if you want to (It's not necessary but is highly encouraged). However, please do not rate or review the book until after you've read the whole thing. Thanks. :)

    Go for it.;)


    Some previous review threads:

    Republic Commando: Hard Contact, by Karen Traviss
    Shatterpoint, by Matthew Stover
    The Cestus Deception, by Steven Barnes
    Medstar I: Battle Surgeons, by Michael Reaves and Steve Perry
    Medstar II: Jedi Healer, by Michael Reaves and Steve Perry
    Jedi Trial, by David Sherman and Dan Cragg
    Yoda: Dark Rendezvous, by Sean Stewart
    Labyrinth of Evil, by James Luceno
    Revenge of the Sith, by Matthew Stover
    Dark Lord: The Rise of Darth Vader by James Luceno
    Galaxies: The Ruins of Dantooine, by Veronica Whitney-Robinson
    Tatooine Ghost, by Troy Denning
    Survivor's Quest, by Timothy Zahn
    Enemy Lines I: Rebel Dream, by Aaron Allston
    Enemy Lines II: Rebel Stand, by Aaron Allston
    Traitor, by Matthew Stover
    Destiny's Way, by Walter Jon Williams
    Force Heretic I: Remnant, by Sean Williams and Shane Dix
    Force Heretic II: Refugee, by Sean Williams and Shane Dix
    Force Heretic III: Reunion, by Sean Williams and Shane Dix
    The Final Prophecy, by Greg Keyes
    The Unifying Force, by James Luceno
    Dark Nest I: The Joiner King, by Troy Denning
    Dark Nest II: The Unseen Queen, by Troy Denning
    Dark Nest III: The Swarm War, by Troy Denning
    Outbound Flight, by Timothy Zahn
    Republic Commando: Triple Zero, by Karen Traviss
    Legacy of the Force: Betrayal, by Aaron Allston
    Legacy of the Force: Bloodlines, by Karen Traviss
    Darth Bane: Path of Destruction, by Drew Karpyshyn
    [link=http://boards.theforce.net/Message.aspx?topic=256694
  2. jmf4 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2008
    star 1
    9.25

    The Luke, Ben, Vestara, Abeloth, and Sith plot was excellent. The other filler plots were mostly good although I was rather bored during the Horn jailbreak. Overall, very solid novel and my main complaint is not enough of the Luke and Ben plot. Probably ahead of Allies and Abyss as my favorite novel of the series so far.
  3. dark_jedi666 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 14, 2002
    star 4
    My favorite book so far of the Fate of the Jedi series. Next to Star by Star I also think it is Troy Denning's best work. There wasn't too much I did not enjoy about the novel. Luke and Ben's story kept getting even more interesting with the search for Abeloth as well, as the story with their "alliance" with the Sith. The fight on Pydyr between, Luke, Ben, Abeloth, Taalon, Khai and Vestara was the ebst scene so far in the series. I actually enjoyed the interaction between Ves and Ben, the end where she has to leave with them, but says "I am never helping a Jedi again" was classic.
    On Coruscant, the Jedi vs Daala storyline got even more explosive. When Kenth tried to stop Saba and their fight afterwords was very interesting and emotional. Saba's later reactions to it really enhanced her character for me. Now that the Jedi are going to try and remove Daala from office, we are finally getting resolution to that ongoign storyline.
    Finally Team Free the Horn kids, succeeded in getting them out of carbonite, and it was interesting to see how it was accomplished. Jaina and Leia working together as Jedi was a very nice moment, as up until then I don't remember seeing it much.


    Overall I give this book a 8.75 out of 10. Easily the highest rated of any of the FOTJ so far.


  4. The_Forgotten_Jedi Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 12, 2010
    star 4
    9.5/10

    I loved Vortex. This is one of the best SW novels I have read in a long time, and it has restored my faith in Troy Denning.

    The Good:
  5. The Jedi Council: for once, we have a Council meeting that is mostly civil, the Masters make well reasoned arguements, and when they get angry at Kenth Hamner, they have a reason for it. Every Master was actully used (even the Solusar's!), and a new Master was finally introduced, who offered an interesting new dynamic.

  6. The rest of the Jedi: they do stuff! Most of the Jedi introduced in this series are used in some way during the book, finally expanding some of their personalities. Oh, and Lowbacca, Izal Waz, and Wonetun all showed up, which made me very happy.

  7. Kenth Hamner: the chapters from his viewpoint are excellent. He truely believes that Saba is leading the Order into treason, and his steadfast refusal to allow this gives us an excellent example of a Jedi Master who refuses to abandon his principles, even when he knows he is all alone. His death is very well done, and the sorrow the rest of the Order expresses shows that even though they disagreed with him, they still liked and respected him.

  8. Saba: she got some notable character devlopment for the first time since the Force Hertic novels.

  9. Lando: does anymore need to be said?

  10. A good Senator: [face_dancing] I knew there had to be one!

  11. The slavery plot: very fascinating. I feel that their is someone in the Jedi Order who is assisting Freedom Flight, but the tactics they used are disturbing. Makes me think the Lost Tribe has something to do with it. Very eager to see how this devlops, not that a squad of Jedi are en route to assist the slave revolts.

  12. Jag and Jaina: they got back together. Please let them stay that way.

  13. The Horn breakout: a very fun action sequence, and Han being awesome.

  14. Luke, Ben, Vestera, and the hunt for Abeloth: good interaction between all the characters, fun battles, and Abeloth is established as a very real threat.


  15. The Bad: just some minor things.
  16. Why couldn't Luke have just told Ben that the plague was not real? Seemed kinda odd to me.

  17. It seemed like their still was some attempt to make Daala seem sympathtic. That will never work.

  18. Tahiri's trial: these scenes are well written, I enjoyed them, but... Tahiri is guilty. She deserves to be punished somehow. I can't root for her to be found innocent.
  19. Likewater Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 31, 2009
    star 4
    Review of Fate of the Jedi: Vortex

    I liked this book, Abeloth for the first time seemed actually dangerous. Seriously I think I was still in elementary school when I first was introduced (Not his first debut) to the shadow king, in Marvels X-men?And a Long time viewer and reader of Star Trek , ?As like an amoeba? or for those not in the know godlike beings don?t impress me by simply?being. No after all these years of sci-fi.

    Finding that killing abeloth only weakens her, she can recover, and she can possess multiple bodies?Barring the nuclear option if she is all in one place she can make a decent threat. And she actually engages the enemy, How she completely dominates the sith, the fallisanni, whiles still taking on Luke, then beating him is overall impressive. But you think The White Current users would have a bit more brains about them.

    The slavery element is still interesting, I was sad to see the ?Hot Scoop? get gunned down by Mandalorian Headshot McHeadhoterson. I mean wow, can you say stupid move Dalaa and whoever else agreed to hire that guy.

    The Good: Luke for the most part, 3dimensional, intelligent, well written, when ever Luke isn?t channeling Denning?s dogma Baggage.
    Ben was actually generally Likeable, still lacking in the personality department, Especially in comparison to Zayne, Cade, Jacen, Anakin, Jaina (and that?s saying something)

    Vestara as always stole the book. She drives a lot of Ben?s actions make a lot of pivotal decisions. Her actions, motivations and thought process harkens back to the more complex characterizations of the New Jedi Order series.

    Saba, in the past was always a one note character to me. A ?noble savage? type character with a odd sense of humor. Different values, cultural alien, but still loyal and noble? Worf, Teal?c, Tyr Anasazi, Ga?kar, Jayne Cobb. And finally, she seems to grow slightly. Still don?t give a damn about her, but that may change if she continues to deepen as a character.

    Zekk makes and appearance with his new squeeze, Lobacca and Jade Kore are mentioned but no other Jedi are notable. If you are looking for a Ganner Ryshode or Wurth Skidder don?t get your hopes up, they are all milk toast.

    Kenth?now you know how Jacen felt?to be made the whipping boy of this series. How you clearly didn?t know the people you have been serving beside all these years? The Jedi respect individuals not stations? Not to mention such adoration and loyalty for a government younger than Ben and filled with corruption. But he just cracked under the strain, yes?

    But then Kenth?you were always just there. The ?Pro-government? member of the council just well were you really anything else? I Don?t remember Kenth from any Bantam books? But somehow I doubt you were incompetent.

    Dalaa?Wow they are really trying to push her as sympathetic, Almost as hard the writers of the last series tried to push Jacen (Who in the NJO did not want genocide, avoided aggression, and looked for peaceful solution) as a raging, mindless, lunatic.

    My only real problem with Vortex was Denning?s dogma in chapter 22.

    Vergere never said that there was no darkside. She said there was no dark side of the force, that the ?darkside? was in the force user. A way of thinking that was espoused by 2 members of you current masters council, long before the YV war.

    There Trope, called ?What you are in the Dark? where a characters actions speaks the loudest. Over the course, of ?Destiny?s Way? Vergere is always in the dark, because besides Jacen there is no one who?s opinion of her?or opinions period, she feels matters.

    In the Dark, Sith all prove one thing, they are Killers. When they feel they no longer need to hide they all start killing anyone that gives them the slightest excuse to. And Vergere doesn?t kill anybody, not the guys guarding Alpha Red, or their scientists; not the snakes that try to eat her; not the Yuzzhan Vong that chase her and Jacen (Even though they regularly kill each other with impunity); not even Nom Annor whom she trussed
  20. Darth_Monopoly Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 6, 2006
    star 2
    10/10

    I have a pretty detailed review in the main thread. I don't usually give out perfect scores, but I really feel this one deserves it. Very rarely do I read a book like this that makes me want to go back and re-read it right away (which I will once my sister is done with it). I just can't find much at all to fault this book for, and as such give it that score.
  21. jedimasterED Moderator Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 10, 1999
    star 4
    Despite the many baskets of color woven by lightsabers and the multiple sentences cut off in a prolonged shout/groan/yell, Vortex was a solid 9. Partly due to its placement in the larger story arc (things really start to happen) and partly due to Denning's work with the characterization, Vortex is the best of the series so far. Let's hope things don't go downhill from here, but upward and onward!
  22. Onderon1 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 18, 2008
    star 4

    I'll make no secret that I really liked Vortex. The plot's moving, but even more importantly in some ways is that the metaplot is moving.

    The Jedi are doing again, not just being and communing; they're taking moral stands, even if they might be disagreeing with each other. Sometimes that ends tragically ... :( ... sometimes not.

    While there were a few jarringly obvious realizations by certain characters, (I'm looking at Corran specifically at the end of one chapter o_O ), and some continued WTK? moments with Daala, Vortex contained some scenes that affected me emotionally. I can't say that about every SW novel anymore, but there was meaning here, and that's a good step in the right direction, IMHO. =D=

    As to where this is all headed ... it's still hard to say. I fear that at least some characters I really care about aren't going to get out of this series intact. [face_worried] Likewise, I'm still hoping that beyond the Lecercen/Treen shenanigans, the GA military is publicly and viciously reprimanded for the unspoken coup that put Daala in power ... but things aren't revolving around the same center of gravity anymore. I'm not sure I could have said that about Sacrifice; although there was a lot that happened there, it didn't give me the same enjoyment that this book did.

    For all that, I have to give Vortex a 9. :D
  23. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Average score: 63.5/7 = 9.07
  24. Jeff_Ferguson Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 15, 2006
    star 4
    Definitely not one of Denning's finest. See my thoughts here. I'll give it a 5/10, I guess. And I normally love Denning. Maybe it's just really really difficult to write a good book within such a terrible series.
  25. DarthIktomi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 11, 2009
    star 4
    Likewater: Like it or not, the Potentium heresy has been Flanderized to the Holy Force(tm) can do no wrong. Sadly, the way the prequel-era Jedi acted, in destroying the Jedi Order, Palpatine ultimately did good. At least until Luke decided the prequel-era Jedi were right about everything, despite simple Darwinian analysis saying they were wrong about quite a bit.
  26. Likewater Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 31, 2009
    star 4
    If one would reference the potentium heresy, "in destroying the Jedi order Palpatine did good because he militerized the Galaxy, and gave it a fighting chance against the Yuuzhan Vong". which is essentially yes "Gods plan" or everything that happens is meant to happen.

    But that is not Vergere's philosophy, which is ?There no dark side of the force? there is no magical boogieman that makes you do bad things.

    She asked ?what is the dark-side? is it the act? Or the Intent? Is it frame of mind? And she argued against all, that it is not something simply defined. She argued that one should think, and given all the knowledge they have at the time, act in the best manner one can.

    Corran Horn argued a similar thing in ?I, Jedi?. That as a cop he saw the ?Dark-side? every day and that is no excuse to let Kyp walk for his actions in the Jedi Academy Trilogy.

    Kyle Katarn said something similar in Jedi Academy, no technique or power is dark or light, it lies in what you use them for.

    Which is also reflected in Yoda?s words to Luke in Empire Strikes Back when he is about to enter the dark-side cave, that the only danger in the cave is what he brings with him.


    But you are correct about uneeded prequal influences.
  27. Ghost Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 13, 2003
    star 6
    I finished the book last night:


    The Good

    *Abeloth. Extremely creepy, seemingly unstoppable, very manipulative. (Poor Akanah :( I'm glad she at least showed through at the end)

    *The Slavery subplot. Especially Madhi's death scene and the arrival of the Jedi as the former Chev slave continues reporting.

    *The Jedi Council's reaction to it, and the sacking of Kenth Hamner. I've been waiting for a scene like that for years, long before FOTJ started.

    *The philosophical conversation between Luke and Akanah/Abeloth, something else I've been anticipating for a while, let's hope Luke doesn't disregard it

    *Kenth's death scene. It was heartbreaking when Saba realized that he really was trying to kill her, but at least Kenth seemed to at least recover to the light side after Saba caught him, before throwing his lightsaber. And this really was a point of no return for the Jedi, they must now truly follow the will of the Force over the will of any government

    *Valin and Jysella finally being rescued

    *I liked Leia a lot more in this book than I did in ABYSS, Han was good as usual

    *Jag wasn't in this much, but I liked his parts

    *Nice to see Zekk and Taryn engaged. Whatever happened to that twin sister of hers, though?

    *Vestara is a great, complex, sometimes unpredictable character

    *Luke was powerful, yet human, and firmly in the light

    *Ben reminds me of how Luke used to be, looking to find and bring out the good in even a Sith

    *I'm still wondering how this is all going to end, and I'm so glad Abeloth didn't really die


    The Bad

    *Ben was a little too optimistic about Vestara, Luke was a little too pessimistic about Vestara, and Vestara really needs to chill out with the betrayals (though she does seem to be softening up a little bit)

    *While I like the idea of Ben and Vestara, I was one of the first to predict it, it does seem too forced and too early

    *Did Jaina and Jag really have to get back together?

    *Tahiri's trial was only mildly interesting


    The Weird

    *Barabels :confused:

    *Wynn Dorvan reaching into his pocket to pet some animal he's rumored to have, after learning about Booster's plan on the Errant Venture? o_O

    *Daala rubbing the fur on Nek Bwua'tu's hip against the grain, just the way he likes it, to wake him from his coma [face_sick]

    *High Lord Taalon sucking on Abeloth's tentacle [face_sick] [face_sick] [face_sick]



    Overall Rating:

    9.6/10
  28. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Average score: 78.19 = 8.68
  29. Mechalich Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 2, 2010
    star 4
    Not so much that the Holy Force can do no wrong, but that the majority of the Jedi council has adopted a ridiculously theocratic viewpoint on the matter. Perhaps the Force is guiding reality, whatever, no big deal, the Jedi viewpoint that 'We know exactly what the Force is guiding reality to do' and 'There is no way we could possibly be wrong.' Are the huge problems. Luke, to his credit, is willing to admit he might not always know exactly what the Force is telling him, the rest of the Jedi Council not so much.

    Agreed that the prequel era Jedi had huge problems, and attempts to bring earlier EU material more in line with revelations about the prequel period has created a big mess. However, that was a different time, with a very different galactic system in place. To paraphrase Bill Clinton 'the era of helpless government is over.' The Prequel era Jedi existed in a galaxy where they were law enforcement and the military all rolled together, so regardless of whether they should have been, that's what they were. Palpatine ended that by re-asserting the power of the non-Force sensitive majority (though it was for his own selfish desires), and action that changed everything and had a greater legacy than pretty much anything else he did.


    This is one of the problems of the NJO and everything that follows it, the Yuuzhan Vong invasion was too big, it utterly overshadowed everything that had happened before and makes it all beholden to how it affected that invasion (sort of like how WWI discussions are colored by the existence of WWII).

    I doubt Corran's point had much to do with the Force, and more to do with Stackpole referencing that letting Kyp walk there was quite possibly the worst thing ever written into the EU. That act set a hideous precedent in that it Forces the Jedi to defend the guilty, by equating redemption in the Force with redemption in the flesh and blood reality. This would be like, in Christianity, saying that, because Christ forgives me when I die as long as I repent, he does so on Earth as well, so I can commit any crimes I want and it means nothing as long as I repent sincerely, which is just juvenile. That precedent affects not only Kyp, but also characters like Tahiri, who's 'trial' is a farce, she's guilty, she admits it, she's contrite, so show find her guilty, so leniency in sentencing, and
    give her 15-20 and be done with it already.

    My brief review of Vortex:
    There's basically two plotlines: the Luke/Sith/Abeloth plotline, which is excellent, dealing with fully realized characters, a solid villain, some complex maneuvers, and cool uses of powers and fights, and is just very Star Wars. Then there's the Daala/Jedi Council/Jedi vs. Government plotline, which is terrible, as the government is not properly realized, the Jedi are despicably dogmatic, Daala is reduced to a caricature and a cheesy Imperial Moff is pulling a fast one on everyone and no one bothers to investigate despite solid evidence of it. I'd give Luke's part maybe an 8/10 and the Coruscant part a 2/10, split the difference and you get 5/10.


  30. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Average score: 83.1/10 = 8.31
  31. Thrawn McEwok Co-Author: Essential Guide to Warfare

    VIP
    Member Since:
    May 9, 2000
    star 6
    There are now three main-site reviews up.

    My own Thrawn McEwok review gave this book 3.75/4, 93.75% and thus 9.4/10!! :D

    Rather less enthusiastically, however, TalonCard's rating is just 1/4, 25% and thus 2.5/10... :(

    While YodaKenobi's score was a rounded 2.8/4, 70% and thus 7/10!! [face_thinking]

    This text may display incorrectly on your computer. :p

    - The Imperial Ewok
  32. Kuag Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 11, 2009
    star 2
    I was nervous about Vortex after hearing about Kenth's death. Then I read the novel and was blown away. Denning is proving yet again that he is among the elite of Star Wars authors. I hated Legacy of the Force, but absolutely loved Inferno and Invincible.

    And Denning's Star by Star and Abyss are among the Pantheon of Perfection in Star Wars novels--alongside Traitor, Shadows of Mindor, and The Unifying Force. But this book absolutely rocked. From beginning til end.

    Pros:

    -Jaina Solo. She is at her best in this novel. One of the great things about FOTJ is that Jaina's character has drastically improved, finally building upon the foundation laid by the YJK and NJO series. And in Vortex, she doesn't disappoint--her flying prowess is put on beautiful display early on in the novel. Her compassion and admiration for Lando was touching and all but made you want to stand and cheer as she shot out of the Rockhound's hangar to engage a Sith war party--all on her own.

    Her interactions with Jag and Zekk were mature and helped flesh out her humanity in a way that exposed her weaknesses, but not in a negative manner. Her happiness for Zekk and Taryn was gratifying to read. And I have to say that seeing her fight side-by-side with her Jedi Knight mom was freaking awesome.

    Jaina is proving to be the heroine we had all hoped her to be. Sword of the Jedi indeed.

    -Luke and Ben Skywalker. The Father-son team has been amazing throughout the series and in Vortex, it hits another level of awesomeness. Whether it's Ben's radiating compassion for Vestara or Luke's determination to save the Jedi Order and save his son at the expense of his own life, the Skywalkers are proving to be the stuff of legends, beyond what they already are.

    Ben is clearly his father's son with his mother's skill set. And that's a great combination. He refuses to give in to Vestara's Sith machinations, doggedly believing her to be redeemable, like Tahiri.

    And Luke is just a whirling vortex (no pun intended) of wisdom and power in this book. His ability to pierce the fog of Abeloth, whether it's on her home planet or on Pydyr, was thrilling to read. You could just sense that Luke's showdown with the Lost Tribe and Abeloth was going to be epic in this book--and the fight scenes didn't disappoint.

    Can't wait to see Father and Son (and Vestara) charge off in pursuit of the monstrosity that is Abeloth!

    -Vestara. What more can you say about this girl? She is decidedly Sith, but intriguingly complicated. She clearly has feelings for Ben, but knows she cannot allow him to infect her with the Jedi way. Her devotion to the Lost Tribe is admirable. While reading from her perspective, I was constantly torn back and forth as she struggled with her Sith upbringing and her Jedi alliance. There were moments where she seemed to get it and moments where she seemed irredeemably lost. And Ben's tenacity just made me root for them even harder.

    Vestara has been masterfully written, like Luke and Ben, by all the writers. No change here. =D=

    -The Jedi Order. Lock and load and do what you do, guys! It's about time. While I love Kenth Hamner's character and completely respect his perspective, I couldn't help but grin at Saba, Kyp, and Corran's efforts to move the Jedi Order to a "higher calling." And yet, it was done in a way that was so imperfect. To me, this is the height of a mature Star Wars storyline. Having the Jedi Knights race off to rescue their Order's founder and leader and fight the Sith was epic. But the result of this was the death of the sitting Grand Master. Having the Jedi Knights move once and for all to end the horrendous practice of slavery was also epic. Is it a hopeless cause? Perhaps. But it's a Jedi cause. Damn the torpedoes! Sabers up! Let's roll!

    Vortex is the best New Jedi Order novel since The Unifying Force. There are nearly Forty Jedi Knights/Masters/Apprentices appearing or mentioned in thi
  33. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Average score: 112/14 = 8.00
  34. MasterSelendile Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 1, 2007
    I really enjoyed this book, and it is my belief that this was the best of the series. Luke and Ben's parts were absolutely amazing, and for once, I didn't mind the slow pace of the Coruscant chapters. Very eager to see how this series pans out.

    9.7/10


    [-0.3 due to a severe mishandling of Kenth (in my opinion)]
  35. DarthIktomi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 11, 2009
    star 4
    What I like about B/V is that they're both trying to convert the other. It's an interesting form of Foe Yay (i.e., two people who are on opposite sides really love each other). Haven't seen it in...ever.

    Of course, if the prophecy is right, Ves will end up being the "good" one.
  36. PadmeA_Panties Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Oct 25, 2003
    star 4
    LOL. How can you say no pun intended; when 1) you even italicized the word 'vortex' 2) your in the Vortex thread 3) there was no need to use the word when anyone of hundreds would suffice and 4) you immediately at the foreknowledge to say 'no pun intended' when you could easily have backtyped and deleted it?

    Sorry to be calling you out - but the "no pun intended" thing is one of my biggest pet peeves; especially when reading/seeing it online.
  37. Kuag Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 11, 2009
    star 2
    I could just as easily claim you're not sorry to be calling me out as you could have just as easily backspaced and deleted that.

    Don't get your panties (no pun intended) in a wad and get over it. [face_talk_hand]
  38. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Average score: 121.7/15 = 8.11
  39. Ceillean Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 13, 2001
    star 5
    It's taken six novels for the Jedi to finally get off their butts and do something. Six novels. It's about frickin' time.

    After reading the first few chapters, I was so bored with the book that I put it aside for a while. I did not like Jaina in the beginning because I had the feeling that Denning was trying to morph her into a younger female version of Han. It didn't sit right with me. But surprisingly, she changes a bit later on. She's actually pleasent to read about...especially after that little whiny epsisode when she broke it off with Jag.

    I liked the action in the book. The parts with Luke and Ben were highly interesting. Although at times a bit confusing. Abeloth is one creepy creature. It's nice to see that there's a creature out there that the Jedi can't easily swat away like a fly. Still...first Callista and then Akkanah? Guess Abeloth really doesn't like Luke's ex-girlfriends...

    Ben and Vestara...annoying yet cute. Their budding attraction is obvious from the get go. I didn't like that Ben was so damned optimistic about her, though. If he had a lick of common sense, he'd have a bit more skeptical towards her. And Luke...Luke was awesome. Big scary Grand Master got his butt kicked and I thoroughly enjoyed that. It truly showed that he isn't as invincible as he's sometimes portrayed to be.

    I loved that Zekk actually had a speaking role. And the secret he and Taryn have -- I'm sort of hoping it's a hint for a real Zekk novel.

    Daala...*shudders* She touched the Bothan's leg just the way he liked it...ugh. I just can't wrap my mind around the fact that she was sleeping with a hairy Bothan. Too weird.

    And even weirder...the tentacle sucking Sith. [face_plain] Yuck.

    Tahiri's trial was beyond boring. And so was the Jysella/Valin extraction chapter. I had the need to page through the entire thing. It felt more like a page filler to me.

    Saba...*sighs* Kenth's death scene was very well written but...I don't know. I had the feeling that Kenth was kind of out of character. His measures were way too drastic, imo. And I really don't care much for Saba so personally I think it's a stupid idea for her to be leading the Jedi Order now. Denning's pet character, I suppose.

    Over all it was a decent book. I enjoyed it.

    I'll give it a 9.5
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