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Lit Clone Wars Era novels to skip?

Discussion in 'Expanded Universe' started by Greenblade, Aug 30, 2012.

  1. Cathy Jedi Master

    Medstar had an interesting setup in book one that came with zero payoff in book two. I remember barely anything about those books, and what little I remember is from book one, except for my sense of disappointment and indifference.

    I also thought Cestus was pretty good, though, so who knows.

    Hard Contact was good, Triple Zero was all right but kind of boring, didn't like True Colors, didn't read Order 66.

    Shatterpoint, Dark Rendezvous, LoE, and the RotS novelization are all great, as expected.

    The AotC novelization reads like boring screenplay and I could not finish Jedi Trial.

    Haven't read any of the TCW novels because I do not care.
    ESg likes this.
  2. General_Un-Co Jedi Padawan

    Personally I have been avoiding the clone wars era for a number of reason, partly the continuity issues.

    The only novels I have read from this period are:

    Labyrinth of Evil
    Labyrinth of evil was spectacular, it serves as the perfect lead in to Episode III, I would go as far as to say it improves the movie. The only downside is that the novel precedes RoTS so closely. With characters and events so tightly tied to the movie, RoTS acts as one big spoiler for all the most important events in the book. There are plenty of star wars prequels out there with the same issue, but I felt this novel suffers much more from it than others.

    Yoda: Dark Rendezvous
    A lot of people are going to disagree with me on this but I just finished reading Yoda Dark Rendezvous and I didn't like it. The final confrontation is worth a read and I can understand why people think of it as the Yoda novel, but overall the events of the novel are pretty meaningless. The entire story is in the title, Yoda rendezvous with a dark side user (spoilers for chapter one: its Dooku). And that's it, there is a sub plot about Scout learning to be a Jedi with limited force abilities and some genuinely interesting points about the Jedi "stealing" children and changes to the Jedi because of the war, but these are minor side points, the main plot is that Yoda and Dooku want to have a chat and then they do, the end. One final thing that annoyed me was that the author kept messing up the way Yoda orders the words in his sentences, Yoda doesn't just say words in any old order.
  3. Cathy Jedi Master

    YDR is the only Star Wars novel that made me cry while I was reading it. Except for POD but that was for other reasons.
  4. CooperTFN Jedi Grand Master

    I could not disagree with Un-Co about YDR more. Really - every single thing he said. Sean Stewart actually went back and studied Yoda's dialogue in the OT; I think the book is more true to that than AotC is. It's also the only book in which Dooku is remotely understandable or human; maybe the only one that even tries.

    It's not like he's Bender; he's sarcastic in the way that most of the characters are, but it stands out more just because this is Star Wars and all other droids act like Threepio. I don't like him because of his attitude, I like him because he acts like a person.
    RC-1991 likes this.
  5. darthcaedus1138 Jedi Master

    He is a person.
  6. CooperTFN Jedi Grand Master

    Amendment - I like him because he's written like a person. :p
    darthcaedus1138 likes this.
  7. Jeff_Ferguson Jedi Master

    Skip Dark Lord. Luceno will still be perfect in your mind if you do.
  8. Revan_AnakinSolo Jedi Master

    I'm quite surprised to see how disliked Jedi Trial was. I personally quite enjoyed it. When I saw it at the library, I picked it up and read the back. One word cemented my desire to check it out - Praesitlyn. The Ultimate Visual Guide had told me that
    Anakin Skywalker had achieved Knighthood after single-handedly saving a Republic communications center there
    and so I read it. It was an interesting read into Anakin, and I loved the budding romance of the two side characters toward the end. To top it off: Anakin officiates a wedding. Priceless. Can't win em all, though, I suppose; then again, before I started reading the old boards, I had LIKED LotF. Of course, that makes me sound like a blind follower - never mind. Jedi Trial is a pretty good book, not necessarily Stover or Luceno par but good enough in its own way.
    Force Smuggler likes this.
  9. Valairy_Scot Jedi Grand Master

    Personally I like all three of Karen Miller's books - Wild Space, Stealth and Siege. Sure, they're not perfect - few books are, but she does a pretty good job of balancing Anakin and Obi-Wan when it comes to the welfare of one vs many and those type of questions.
    anakinfansince1983 likes this.
  10. CooperTFN Jedi Grand Master


    But seriously - the plot of the book sounds great in the abstract. Praesitlyn, Nejaa Halcyon, what's not to love?

    Turns out, everything.
    Mia Mesharad likes this.
  11. Kais Jai Sheelal Jedi Grand Master

    I wouldn't agree with this but Karen's Pellaeon is a little different than Zahn's take. I think she finds a nice balance between Zahn and her - making him a more real character - rather than just the military officer with no life beyond the bridge of his Star Destroyer If you are interested in Pellaeon though I'd say that No Prisoners is a must read.

    In terms of The Clone Wars themselves a lot of the books mentioned don't paint a grand picture of Republic vs CIS stuff, they are more character journey's set against TCW.

    Yoda: Dark Rendezvous would be close to a must read imo since it focus's on main characters from the films. I love the Republic Commando series but in the grand scheme of things they are not at all essential to following the war itself.
  12. Lord Grey One Jedi Knight

    Well, I agree that Jedi Trial sounds important if you have one line summing up the climax. But that's the problem: The climax is tacked on to a very bad book (all POVs are IMHO, of course). And it's pretty silly as it's basically Anakin saying "well, the book has gone on for too long, I'll do this myself", and so he does. We have a few pretty good bad reviews in the 181st (shameless plug), but unfortunately they're in the old forum...

    I don't care about a planet with a nearly unspellable name ;) but I was really reeled in by Nejaa Halcyon, and boy was that a disaster.

    So basically, I embrace the fact that TCW continuity has kicked out the most important setup of Jedi Trial (and therefore effectively the book itself) by making Anakin a knight much earlier. I know that you can still squeeze the book in, so I'd welcome it if TCW went out of its way to establish that Anakin had been knighted for something else.

    So... here's a quick rundown of what I think about the Clone Wars novels:
    - Shatterpoint: I love Stover's writing, so it's a really good book. I think he has done better, but still, a very good read.
    - The Cestus Deception: Found it more boring than I expected. I was looking forward to an Obi-Wan book, but as I said, somehow it didn't do much for me.
    - Medstar: Good setup, but does little of interest with it. Might be harmed by the fact that there were two authors.
    - Jedi Trial: The horror... the horror...
    - Dark Rendezvous: Really touching. Perfect Yoda and the best Dooku, as the others said.
    - Labyrinth of Evil: Very thrilling back then. I still listen to the audioplay from time to time, an entertaining story.
    - Hard Contact: Thrilled me back then and survived my "pickiness" pretty well, we just read it in the 181st (shameless plug).
    - Triple Zero: I was really looking forward to this. More RepCom! Coruscant terrorism! Afterwards, I never could phrase my feelings better than Lord Hydronium did.
    - RepCom 3/4: I honestly couldn't be bothered to read them anymore.
    - TCW tie-ins: I only read Wild Space because the set up - Obi-Wan and Bail - sounded great. Afterwards, I couldn't be bothered to read anymore TCW tie-ins.

    Bender actually works better for me because he's comedy. Cynical robots in SW are never just well written characters for me, they are always this unpleasant mix of special and better. The regular Trek outsider character - Spock, Data, Odo, you name it - always have a flaw as well. I-Five's amnesia doesn't round out the fact that he's best at everything he does, and that he knows he's best. Is he the only droid who's a person? No, but he's the only one who has proof and tells it to us all. He's more of a character than HK-47, that bag of cynical one-liners, but his superiority really got on my nerves.
    RC-1991 and Gorefiend like this.
  13. anakinfansince1983 Shelf of Shame "Winner"

    You're going to get a variety of opinions here. I loved Karen Miller's Clone Wars novels, in fact, they are my favorites of all the EU. If you are at all interested in Anakin and Obi-Wan's friendship written by an author who obviously likes both characters, I'd recommend them.

    Other than that, definitely read Labyrinth of Evil. It is outstanding.

    I'd say you could skip Cloak of Deception as Plagueis covers that time frame pretty well.
  14. Todd the Jedi Jedi Grand Master

    Three words on Jedi Trial: purple Muun teeth.[face_sick]

    I like YDR; it has many great elements. The only problem I had with it was the prose itself. Otherwise characterizations and plots were top notch.
  15. instantdeath Jedi Grand Master

    I will say that I consider Yoda: Dark Rendezvous to be the best Yoda depiction ever. That includes Empire Strikes Back. He's never been as astoundingly likable as he is in that novel.

    As someone who has not yet read it, but will at some point pretty soon, the book doesn't actually sound half-bad. Can't wait to find out just how wrong I am.
  16. CooperTFN Jedi Grand Master

  17. instantdeath Jedi Grand Master

    Err, I guess it gets the point across? [face_laugh]
  18. MercenaryAce Jedi Master

    At the risk of being burned for heresy, I was also kind of disappointed in Yoda: Dark Rendezvous and actually liked Jedi Trial.

    While I can't remember any specific problems, I just remember getting so excited about finally getting to read what everyone considered a masterpiece...and thinking at the end "This is it? This is what everyone raved about so much?"

    Jedi Trial I liked because it felt like it touched on several things I think the rest of the series ignores so much: logistics for the war effort, volunteer soldiers for both sides, reasons for fighting over planets besides new but apparently very important metal X etc... But again, that was a long time ago and I mostly just remember liking it.

    I should clarify I absolutely think Y:DR is the better book, but my expectations were so high that I still felt let down.
  19. instantdeath Jedi Grand Master

    To be quite honest, not only does Jedi Trial not sound like an abomination, but Danial Cragg's non SW series actually sounds like it could be interesting. Wonder if the writing in that is as bad?

    Though looking into them a bit, they do sound very cliched...
  20. Gorefiend Jedi Grand Master

    No one has any right to skip Cloak of Deception for whatever reason, it is literally the one book that explains the whole Galactic Republic political mess and how the Clone Wars could ever happen and is an incredible fun read as well. It not being about the Sith even makes it way more entertaining than Plagueis ;)
    JackG and RC-1991 like this.

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