The JC Lit Reviews Special: LEGACY OF THE FORCE: REVELATION (Spoilers)

Discussion in 'Literature' started by Havac, Feb 25, 2008.

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  1. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    LOTF continues -- we're only one book from the finale! Meanwhile, things are . . . brought out into public. You might even say . . . revealed.

    Some rules: rate Revelation 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:

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

    Member Since:
    Jul 6, 2007
    star 5
    Legacy of the Force:Revalation

    The title definitely has a ring to it, I wonder what the Revalation was to be?
    I have enjoyed all of Karen Traviss's books thus far and this one was no different, though I did not find it quite as brilliant as her past work. The first thing that really lept off the page at me was the way the term Sith is used by a number of different characters in relation to Jacen Solo. Now I really don't know who is to blame for this but the reveal of Jacen's Sithdom to the galaxy should have been a bigger deal, a Revalation if you will. Luke and the gang of course know what a bad guy Jacen has become but I think the Revalation that he was following the exact path of his grandfather should have been a much bigger deal, not a skipped moment of plot. [face_frustrated]

    Gilad Pellaeon's story arc in this book was great, from his time on Bastion with Reige to his endless quotes and solid loyalty to what he believes is right. "Jacen Solo is the chaos, not the cure", "I will not lend the Empire to a petty despot", and "Go rot somewhere else villip" were just a few of his lines that I really enjoyed.:). Revalation also really expands on the Remnant, with new Moff's, confirmation of new(or old) Imperial worlds like Phaeda. The story also fleshes out that Gilad did have a son and possibly has another, which I quite enjoyed. I found he possibly spent a bit too much time admiring women but otherwise very much enjoyed his portions of the novel.

    Now as for Jaina traveling to learn from the great master Boba Fett, I found this a bit less solid. The whole give in to your anger cause its not really anger idea smelled a bit too much like pretending the darkside doesn't exist, circa New Jedi Order. Didn't like it. Cold blooded killers shouldn't be flying into a blind rage to increase their combat skills, really I'd imagine it would hamper them.
    Beskar Plate Armor is the single worst idea maybe since the Jedi roaches in Planet of Twilight. I know things like Cortiss alloy have existed in the EU for a long time, but the idea of Mando's wearing invincible armor was just poor. Basicly a handful of Mando's destroyed a mass of Imperial Troopers without a single casualty cause everything bounces off their fancy armor. Not exciting at all.
    The Mando's came across as far too Invincible for my liking. Even Caedus seemed no match for them, when really he just needed to take a second to snap Carid's neck with the force, instead of creating illusions. Was one Mando death too much to ask for? I think not.

    Now I did love the Gotab/Jusik sections of the book, particularly the end meeting with Jaina. Confirming, in book, that he survived the purge was a lot of fun, even if I don't agree with the steps he took. Getting his and Venku's back story might make Order 66 a bit less dramatic, but I still have the fates of plenty of characters to worry about from that series. It's nice to know that Jusik survived and Venku carried on the Legacy his mother wanted for him, even if he isn't the only one......

    The Battle of Fondor was excellently played out, building over 100 pages to its conclusion. Niathal really stepped up as a character and of course I feel like Traviss is the only one who writes Darth Caedus correctly. Its great getting into Caedus's head, he's much more believable in her novels.

    Pellaeon's death was beautifully written, if sad for me. The last holdover from Heir to the Empire has been taken from us. I was shocked but not disappointed by his death. :( The only part I found really upset me was the fact that he was to be layed to rest on Corellia instead of Bastion, cause Victor Reige said he'd like it that way. The Pellaeon I know was Imperial to the core, and would have remained so after death. Having his ashes spread over the Pellaeon Gardens would have been a much more symbolic end for him, and tie into the Legacy comic series beautifully. Alas, it ain't happen'in.:(

    Luke and Ben's scenes were heart wrenching and really show
  3. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Great descending-into-madness-yet-you-actually-understand-his-thought-process Jacen? Check.

    Great pragmatic, investigating Ben? Check.

    Luke striking a balance between grief and asskicking? Check.

    Jaina figuring some stuff out and getting set to become the IWOD? Check.

    Boba Fett coming into the main plot and remaining a nasty bastard? Check.

    Gilad Pellaeon, despite some minor issues, being a badass and going out in reasonable style? Check.

    Niathal splitting with Jacen and setting up a new position for the final book? Check.

    Jag actually appearing and Jaina/Jag being treated as a given? Check.

    Imperials ready for Soontir Fel to come in and kick some Moff ass? Check.

    Overall, I found it a good read which put everything in place for the conclusion. It's generally good. A few points nagged at me and some decisions I questioned (did Carid really have to have a shot on Jacen? Come on, you're just handing ammo to your critics), but overall I enjoyed it. Also, this easily felt like the most integrated of the Traviss books, which is always good.

  4. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Average score: 15.05/2 = 7.53
  5. AnnLouise Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 10, 2005
    star 3
    Maybe a 6.

    Instead of a buildup to the finale, it's just more of The Glorious Heroics of Boba Fett
    I can't help but feel that Fett is traininng Jaina not to have her as prepared as possible, but to shoehorn even more Fett/Mando into the LOTF storyline. If this was a story of the Skywalker family, why not have Jaina with Luke and Ben, or her parents? As a casual reader of SW fiction, I was disappointed that they've been scattered about for so many books.

  6. patchworkz7 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2004
    star 4
    Wait...didn't you just say that you hadn't read it and had no intention of buying it in the Spoiler thread?

    If you did read it, fair play, but if people are just chucking in numbers having not read it the book, it sort of makes a review thread pointless.

    If you did read it, I apologize, but that doesn't jibe with what was said in the Spoiler thread.

    "I've usually picked up the MM in this series the first day of release. After looking through this one, I changed my mind. As much as it pains me to say this, I'll wait for Revelation to show up at Half Price.
    Why would I choose to not help my store's business?"

    So, basically, you flipped through the book?
  7. AdmiralNick22 Fleet Admiral of Literature

    Member Since:
    May 28, 2003
    star 6
    The book was a good read, with a fast plot and effectively set up Invincible. The main things I liked were:

    1. Admiral Cha Niathal's becoming a very complex and in depth character. She continues to grow on me, which says alot since I disliked her immensly in the early LOTF books.

    2. Alliance government-in-exile. I would not be at all suprised to see Darklighter, Celchu, Wedge, Bwua'tu, and some GA worlds/senators rushing to Fondor to side with Niathal. We finally have the "break" between the traditional Alliance and Jacen's twisted perversion of it.

    3. Gilad Pellaeon. He simply rocked. RIP, old soldier. Ackbar is waiting for you in heaven.

    4. Battle of Fondor- one of the best battles in LOTF. Daala's suprise arrival was perfect, though I was a bit disappointed by her special weapons. I would of rather she came in with a larger force of old ships.

    The continuity errors were minor. Calling Borleias a banking world, the statement about "first Imperial Moff", etc. Nothing huge, which is a good thing.

    Overall, I give the book a 7. :)

    --Adm. Nick
  8. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    It's a trap!
  9. JaySkywalker01 Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Oct 25, 2005
    star 4

    I honestly felt this book was really draggy in certain places. I enjoyed the Mando scenes and the C.S.I.: Coruscant scenes (aka Ben). I found the Jacen, Palleon and even a lot of the battle scenes to be a bit...well, boring.

    I also don't like the idea of the invincible Mandalorians. I enjoyed the scenes with them, but I feel like a lot of the ideas behind their culture and personalities have been beaten like a dead horse.

    So, it was good, but not anywhere near on the same level as Inferno or Fury.
  10. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Average score: 28.55/4 = 7.14
  11. BaneOfTheSith Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    May 25, 2007
    star 1
    i can see them playing chess against each other (although i don't really know what serves for chess in SW).

    :_| i got something in my eye....
  12. AnnLouise Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 10, 2005
    star 3
    I started reading each chapter, and - it's not really speed reading, but skimming down each page, and also reading through whole chapters, then going back and rereading some of the skimmed stuff. I didn't comment on it before today, because I was reading it before the actual release date. So no, I wasn't just picking it up today and deciding not to buy it because of what I just read today on my lunch break. I'd been tossing around the buy/not buy decision since we got it in last week. [face_peace].
    When Sacrifice comes out in MM (checked it out, read it, liked it), I'll be getting that on the first day of sales.
    Someone who was asking about it last week was surprised that it was ending with one more book. He remarked that was nowhere near like the NJO; since I haven't read much of that, I'm not sure if he was referring to quality or quantity.
  13. KisuraTheGreat Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Feb 26, 2008
    Read it last night (found it early--yay!), and spent the day trying to decide what I thought of it.

    The things that struck me--

    1. Cha Niathal. I haven't particularly liked the admiral until now, but I had largely dismissed her. This story gave her something to do, and really allowed us to get to know her. I've become a fan.

    2. Jacen's insanity. While Allston had me chilled by the increasingly EVIL Jason in Fury, the moments of bittersweet humanity and even gentle humor juxtaposed with actual atrocity managed to give me goosebumps. This was excellent work on Karen Traviss' part.

    3. The humanity of the book as a whole. Since the NJO, it's frequently felt like a SW book was a roller coaster ride--hang on and get through the story, occasionally getting a fleeting glance at the world and the people around you before careening off again. This book was a little more people-focused, a little quieter. I would not like it to become a trend. . . but it was refreshing as an incidence.

    4. Jedi Mind Tricks. Ships? Attacking fleets? A Jedi sees not these things. But one whiny little overgrown Sith sure can! One of only three times when I have been impressed by Luke Skywalker.

    5. NABOO, NABOO, NABOO, NABOO BLOODY NABOO. Theed horseshoes, ancient naval warfare, Naboo timeshares, ad nauseum. Please, please please--let us permanently veto any quirky little plot points that invoke arcane beliefs, recreational activities, or "galactic" myths from the planets of Naboo, Tatooine, or Corellia UNLESS IT IS REMOTELY BELIEVABLE THAT THE GALAXY AT LARGE WOULD HAVE ACCESS TO THESE LITTLE LOCAL NICETIES!

    6. I have to agree with other commenters here--in many ways the Karen Traviss books have been the Legacy of the Mandalores, with a galactic news feed or two thrown in to arc from Allston to Denning. If I was a fan of the armored ones, I would love it, but they honestly don't appeal to me and I find myself truly not caring. Legacy of the Pilots, now. . . that would be a story. . . :)

    7. A very small, but noticeable thing--this book seemed to have a more obviously British cant to the language than I remembered in Bloodlines or Sacrifice. I approve in many instances--Coruscant, Bastion, and even the Mandalorean environments have excellent reasons for a different rhythm and diction (lads), and it only makes sense that it would be spread throughout the galaxy, but it seemed jarring at times, and misplaced to my (admittedly American) ear.

    8. I felt a disconnection to the events that ended Fury--we heard nothing from Tenel Ka, Wedge, or Tycho, all of whom had dangling storylines. I have great faith, and am looking forward to Troy Denning bringing them to a conclusion, but I'll admit that I was hoping for a mention, a cameo. . . even an aside, to tide me over until then, though.

    9. Daala. Meh. I wish I had a stronger reaction. I should have had a stronger reaction to one of the Shocking Plot Twists of the book, but it just felt. . . tired. Except for her bit about killing the Moffs. That made me laugh.

    An (of all things) amiable read with some excellent bits of humor, but in whole, it felt more like a filler book, a fourth or a sixth, rather than the nail-biting, tighten-the-tension-just-one-more-notch next to last I was hoping to devour.

    A 5 overall (with a few parts that just really require a 7).

  14. patchworkz7 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2004
    star 4
    Ahhh, sorry, makes more sense now. I hadn't caught the reading vs buying part.

    I used to think my dream job would be working in a book store until I helped a used bookstore owner out and worked part-time for a bit, and then heard the horror stories from people who worked in the chain stores ;)
  15. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Average score: 33.55/5 = 6.71
  16. JadedSkycrawler Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 10, 2002
    star 2
    I give it a 9 out of 10, I absolutely loved it!
    Very intense, emotional, touching- very well written all around. The Luke/Ben scenes were sweet and wonderful! Also, I'm very excited to report that I really enjoyed Jaina's characterization in this book, which hasn't really happened awhile. And while Jacen comes off as being more arrogant than ever! ("Technically it's my lord, but sir is fine on duty". [face_sick] lol, I still found him fascinating.
    However, I would have loved to have seen more Han and Leia- hence the docked point. ;)
  17. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Average score: 42.55/6 = 7.09
  18. Bringbacknom Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 2006
    star 1
    I'm not going to exaggerate this rating because I really had great fun reading the book.

    High points for me:
    - Ben and Shevu's investigation. It wasn't tense, or tragic, or gloomy. I don't think it was supposed to be. It had to be done, and it was done with style to characterise the son of Skywalker. It gave Ben something to do without merely holding him by the scruff of his robes before setting him loose in Invincible.
    - Daala's return/name reveal. Internal continuity's been a massive concern in LOTF, but the way it has resolved so many issues outside of the series never seems to get that much praise. Lumiya. Thrackan. Ailyn. All had themselves wrapped up at the start; then things slacked a little. But Daala has been doing nothing in EU novels since Planet of Twilight; she was out there in EU limbo, ignored. Someone finally dusted her off and brought her back in, and, with a sly reference to all the mono-named characters, Traviss gave her a proper moniker. Hurrah!
    - Battle of Fondor - Traviss's first space battle was awesome. The build-up and sustained tension throughout, with the political subplots, were brilliant. And Daala's KJA-tech weapons were a nice, well-researched touch.
    - Pellaeon - say what you want, but Admirals should not fade away (unless they die after a great victory, like Ackbar). Bel Iblis, Kre'fey, Farlander, Brand and all the others who dropped off the map after NJO - I thought Pellaeon was firmly in their ranks. So his reveal and final weeks really worked nicely for me. I first met Pelly when I was about eight or nine; same with Daala. One returned, one left in Rev, but I was happy with Traviss' choices. Tahiri's entering the cabin was also very eerie.
    - Jaina - decent characterization, and she met Jacen at the end anyway, rather than hold it till Invincible
    - Sith apprentice, finally! But I'll come onto Tahiri
    - Tebut - the focus on this was realistic and perfect. Nevil's dilemma ("Don't fear me."(!)), Makin, Reige and the Devis info was also welcome
    - The EU feel. Ok, we didn't get much in the way of Phennir or Corellia. But Fondor/Bilbringi/Remnant/Moffs worked for me. And what happened on Shogun was a good li'l subplot
    - Chimaera. "She was never confirmed destroyed..." - awesome!

    - Tahiri. Usually I don't mind when characters go down strange paths. But when I found myself desperate that she should die, I thought back to EOV and winced. She's really had an awful time in the EU. I also kept expecting, not through any preference of my own, for her and Jacen to get it on. Depraved Sith style.
    - Ah, Sintas. Boba didn't reach a conclusion with you, and he didn't die. So what's the point?
    - Mandalorians - far more tolerable, but don't condescend to Jaina, please.
    - The intro leads to each chapter started to drag a little
    - NABOO!!!!!! Was it five mentions in the end?!
    - Movie lines, constantly forced in.

    Pacing, good, except towards the end when it felt like a Return of the King style repeated fade to black.
    Characterization - dead on, as it so often is with Traviss. Pellaeon's woman-obsession was a little unnerving, but hey.
    Writing/dialogue - some of the best of LOTF, as I saw it. I didn't feel like I was indulging in a guilty pleasure as I read this, for once. It was at times impressive!

    Bring on Invincible, I say. From the preview, we can see Denning doesn't immediately reject all Traviss's work. And Troy will put the Sith Order in - they're just on hold, I'm sure. And with Daala's return, I'm more confident than ever that we'll see in the Sith some familiar *cough* BLACKHOLE *cough* faces once more.

    In conclusion, I read SW Lit to get taken to that GFFA. Revelation delivered that for me, far above my expectations.


  19. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Average score: 51.65/7 = 7.38
  20. NelanisGhost Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jun 24, 2006
    star 4
    5. NABOO, NABOO, NABOO, NABOO BLOODY NABOO. Theed horseshoes, ancient naval warfare, Naboo timeshares, ad nauseum. Please, please please--let us permanently veto any quirky little plot points that invoke arcane beliefs, recreational activities, or "galactic" myths from the planets of Naboo, Tatooine, or Corellia UNLESS IT IS REMOTELY BELIEVABLE THAT THE GALAXY AT LARGE WOULD HAVE ACCESS TO THESE LITTLE LOCAL NICETIES!

    I sympathize. And you're right, it's out of place. The only way I see it is that the YV destroyed almost every other recognizable planet.
    Naboo is very beautiful and it was passed over, probably because it was already unspoiled. So, now it's become a destination after so many other worlds are still rebuilding. That makes sense.
  21. Point Given Mod of Literature and Community

    Member Since:
    Dec 12, 2006
    star 6
    The Good

    Ben Skywalker- He?s really coming into his own now. He kept his emotions in check to gain indisputable evidence that Jacen killed his mother. His determination and rationality are something to behold. I can?t wait to see how he?ll take the Jedi Order in a new direction once he gets old enough. I also think he should be sticking a saber in Jacen to finish him, but DR is fixated on this ?twin battle?

    Lon Shevu- A few months ago, I messaged Karen Traviss asking to keep Lon Shevu alive as he was one of my favorite characters. She replied that she?d already finished the book and couldn?t give it away but she assured me that Captain Shevu would play an important role. How right she is, Shevu is Ben?s true mentor; helping him at every turn yet leaving him to discover things on his own. He?s always there for him to lean on and he?s the consummate professional. It was good to get some back story on him as well, his secret marriage to Shula and sending her away for her own safety, and how Jacen trusts him so

    Jaina/Jag- understated but beautiful. It?s a given, and I?m happy

    Pellaeon- great to see the old warrior come out for one last turn.

    Darth Caedus- Although Inferno and Fury were rip-roaring adventures, they really messed with Jacen?s characterization. He seemed to be extremely insane, and didn?t justify his own actions. Thankfully his true self is somewhat back. Although he is still deluded, he gives reasons for his actions and they do make sense from a twisted point of view. He doesn?t seem to be completely insane anymore and even admits his faults such as with Tebut, and shows some humor even if it is just to convince his crew he hasn?t lost it.

    Niathal- glad to see her get some page time. Her dilemma is great to watch and you really feel her anguish when the minelayers are blown out of the sky. Wish she hasn?t underestimated the fleet?s loyalty to Jacen though.

    The Force Illusion- Second time in a Traviss book that Luke gets to humiliate Jacen(first with the chair) except this time he has an audience. His near capture of him is astounding

    Battle of Fondor- best space battle in LotF by far.

    Reaction to Tebut's death- glad to see it didn't get passed over. Good to see the reaction to thte death spreading and people starting to fear Jacen, which of course forces him to take steps to counter this and gives Niathal an excuse to force out Jacen

    The Bad

    Mandos- Well I finally read the Mando parts in detail instead of just skimming like in Bloodlines and Sacrifice, and it wasn?t all that bad, but still get your own series Karen Traviss. That being said, I felt a bit bad for Boba but Gotab and Beviin annoyed me to no end

    Tahiri- I can?t reconciliate her personality with what she?s become. I remember when she was the first to speak out against Jacen in DNT, now what?s happened?

    Mirta Gev?s relationship with Jaina- Well it wasn?t bad in that sense, but the entire thing seemed very forced. I also have a hard time believing that Mirta didn?t go all beserker once she realized how close she was to Jacen

    Jacen almost dying at the hand of Mandos- Bullpants. Just so I?m just going to pretend it never happened. Kind of like I pretend that KT left out a few zeros when talking about the size of the Clone Army.

    Lack of Han, Leia, Allana and Tenel Ka- I wanted to see some interaction between all of them and the stories they would tell each other

    Lack of Jaina?s reaction to being an aunt, Luke being a grand-uncle and Ben being a second cousin (I think)- wanted to see these too

    The Ugly

    Fett/Daala- Yuck.

    Overall I?d give it an 8.1 . Would be an 8.6 if we had some closure with Allana. Mandos drop it from 9 status for sure.
  22. ConservativeSoldier Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Oct 1, 2005
    star 3
    Revelation was hands-down Ms. Traviss' best work. She has consistently shown that she is gifted at writing complex relationships and personalizing this galaxy far, far away. I was blown away by her characterizations of the interactions between Ben/Luke/Shevu, Jaina and the Mandos, Pellaeon and the Moffs, and Caedus/Niathal.

    I honestly believe that after eight books of LotF, if Traviss had been able to write the other five thus far, we would have a truly epic story centering around the Solo/Skywalker clans. As much as I enjoy Denning and Allston for their strengths, Ms. Traviss is just a flat-out terrific author who gets the relationship aspect that this story is supposed to be conveying.

    Disclaimer: I'm not a Fandalorian.

    The plot was well done. It transitioned well from Fury in as much as Corellia is out of the picture with Centerpoint destroyed and Commenor is not much of a threat considering a giant asteroid was slung into its surface--the focus on Fondor made sense.

    And the Battle of Fondor kicked so much ass. I didn't think she'd be able to write space battles very well (shame on me given her time in the Royal Navy), but she's shown she's extremely capable at writing an engaging, thrilling, and large-scale engagement. Cameos by her previous characters, Makin and Piris, were well done.

    And even characters like Kral Nevil were portrayed perfectly and showed greater cohesion from the previous novel. (Sidenote: Glad he's alive)

    The Mandalorian angle has worked out perfectly to be honest. They fit into the greater war considering how valuable their new fighters and the newly rediscovered Mandalorian iron is to both sides and the demons plaguing Fett, Mirta, and Sintas truly are applicable to the Solo and Skywalker clans.

    The fact that Fett and Han were once mortal enemies with a nasty history makes Jaina's mission to seek Fett out all the more clever. And Traviss does a great job showing that there's little a Mando can teach a Jedi about fighting. Goran tells Jaina that within a week, she'd master everything and kill him. The Mandalorians know the Jedi are more powerful and they admit as much (which should make some of her critics rethink how they think Ms. Traviss views the Jedi/Mandos); what Jaina sought out initially was flawed, but what she discovered and learned from her time wasn't. She found herself, learned her own weaknesses, and a basic truth about the way things are that will surely give her the strength to do what has to be done: end her brother.

    And I guarantee you that her time on Mandalore helps her become a better person and greater Jedi, too.

    There were a couple of continuity flubs (i.e. "First female Moff," "Borleias as a banking world"), but those are easily overlooked. I should note that there were more Yuuzhan Vong War references in this novel than in past ones and I felt like Traviss really made you feel like that war really mattered and had the impact we all felt it did.

    Oh, and the return of the Imperial Remnant was awesome. Even Daala's return was stylishly done. Daala isn't made out to be some awesome and brilliant tactician. She just is what she is.

    There were some other weak points. I thought having Tahiri around was good, but her characterization wasn't as strong. I think that's due to two things:

    1). We never got her PoV.
    2). The other authors never put much effort into making her a believable agent for Jacen.

    Overall, this book gets a 9/10. Perfect setup for Invincible!

  23. Havac Former Moderator

    Member Since:
    Sep 29, 2005
    star 7
    Average score: 68.75/9 = 7.64
  24. Thrawn McEwok Co-Author: Essential Guide to Warfare

    Member Since:
    May 9, 2000
    star 6
    The first [link=]main site review[/link] is up: 2.7/4, which works out at 6.75/10.

    I enjoyed it more than Bloodlines and Sacrifice, though I'm not enthusiastic about everything in it...

    - The Imperial Ewok
  25. Chronopoint Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Nov 25, 2002
    star 1
    BLUF: 8.8/10

    Unlike a few of the other posters, I am a Fett / Mando enthusiast. With that said, I was extremely pleased with this book. Not sure how much substance there is in this review, but it touchs on most of the elements that I remember as particularly interesting.

    I have to say that I have found personally found Traviss' style of writing and storytelling to be much more appealing than Allston or Denning's. I think she captures the characters' emotions and dialogue much better. There several times when I was so engrossed by the story that I actually had chills run down my spine. I think of the three authors, she does the best at evoking these feelings. This iteration is no exception.

    Imperial Remnant - I have always been a fan of the Imperials. They are ruthless, tenacious, and precise. Traviss brings them back in true form. I was mostly happy with Palleon. He is one of those great Admirals and strategists from the past and, despite his old age, is still in top form. I was somewhat surprised that Palleon would unwittingly allow himself to be killed by Tahiri. He knew what she was, and he knew Jacen was treacherous. I find it difficult to believe that he wouldn't have anticipated her action. It was even more peculiar that she was not immediately taken into custody at the onset of the 'betrayal'.

    Daala - I thought this was great. Although it was not very surprising by the time her name was finally mentioned, I was still excited to see her back. I am hoping that she will continue to play a significant role in Invincible.

    Fett - Fett is one of my favorites, which should explain why I am particularly enthusiastic towards Traviss' contributions. He was neglected throughout the NJO and I think the direction they took Fett and the Mandos was very intriguing. There was a time when I would not have wanted to know all this backstory for Fett. I thought it would weaken him. Indeed the prequels nearly destroyed the character for me. Traviss has managed to rekindle my facination with his character. He is so awkward as Mandalore, I love it. I felt that the family and friend interactions were spot on and very believable. On a side note, I am concerned that Traviss is not 'finishing' Fett's story arc in this series. Neither Allston, nor Denning have handled Fett in their installments. I've already read most of the preview for Invincible, which was what lead to my concern. In fairness, I think that they struggle with all of the characters, but I am most familiar with Fett and am not sure he will be able effectively use these characters.

    Daala / Fett - The only part that I found particularly odd about this was the final scene with them. I am not entirely certain that it is anything more than two socially awkward and emotionally scarred individuals who, because of their shared misfortunes, are able to get along on friendly terms. I personally don't think it was anything more than that, but given how comically awkward it would be, I think it could have some potential in the right hands.

    Beviin - Beviin really stood out for me. Again, this is all rooted in my facination for Mandos, but I felt that he was a very strong supporting character for the various Fett, and Fett and Jaina plots. Another example of Traviss creating truly believable characters.

    Caedus - I really learned to hate him in Revelation. I was never a big fan of his character, but I was surprised how much I yearned for Caedus to bite the bullet, for him to be humiliated and defeated.

    Luke - Where the heck did he go during the fight at Fondor?? How many times are we going to read about him, or any number of other characters trying to 'redeem' Jacen? Just two books ago they were trying to assassinate him. What has changed since then that they would give abduction another shot?? The whole Skywalker and Solo clan seem to be on a pendulum and can't decide when he's completely dead and when there is still hope to save him. I did enjoy Ben and Luke's relationship in this book. I was frustrated in the early no
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