Part of the first wave of High Republic titles, Justina Ireland delivers the middle-grade title, A Test of Courage. Surprisingly young prodigy Jedi Knight Vesnestra Rwoh is charged with the protection of Avon Starros, an adventure-seeking Senator’s daughter, on their way to the dedication of the Starlight Beacon. The Nihil, villains established in Light of the Jedi, infiltrate their transport ship and their sabotage rips the ship apart. . . leading Vernestra and the traumatized crew to take on an evil beyond anything they could have imagined.
When a transport ship is abruptly kicked out of hyperspace as part of a galaxy-wide disaster, newly-minted teen Jedi Vernestra Rwoh, a young Padawan, an audacious tech-kid, and the son of an ambassador are stranded on a jungle moon where they must work together to survive both the dangerous terrain and a hidden danger lurking in the shadows….
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I don’t normally pick up “children” books but I pre-ordered this one just because I wanted to take in as much content from The High Republic as possible. I was very surprised to find that the quality within the small pages is up to par with that of an adult novel. Really the only reason I can see this being labeled for a younger audience is the fact that the pages are small. I personally couldn’t relate to any of the characters, but I won’t hold that against Justina Ireland because I realize that I’m not exactly this book’s targeted audience. So putting that aside, the story was rather interesting and ended up being a great addition to the lore of the new era and setting up the scene for what’s to come.
Don't judge a book by its target audience - the same way REBELS is a show "for kids" that plenty of adults also happen to love, middle-grade books like A TEST OF COURAGE aren't always what they seem. This book is filled with intriguing, dynamic characters that have the potential to entertain children and adults alike. The story may be intended for younger readers, but it's just as enjoyable of a ride as LIGHT OF THE JEDI and other adult canon novels. It brilliantly moves the events of The High Republic forward at a much smaller scale, but its implications are astounding - when you hit that final page, you'll still wish you had at least one more.
Legends Lookback Lead Host
A wonderfully enjoyable middle-grade entry in the High Republic publishing program, A Test of Courage chronicles the misadventure of prodigy 16-year-old Jedi Knight Vernestra Rwoh alongside the mischievous Senator’s daughter Avon Starros as their lives are turned upside down by a Nihl attack. We see how grief tempts Jedi Padawan Imri to give into his desire for revenge in a totally believable way, lending the book emotional depth. Plus it develops some cool lightsaber lore with Vernestra’s lightwhip and Avon’s desire to experiment on kyber crystals. As an overachiever, I really identified with Vernestra’s character and can’t wait to see how the series develops her and Avon!
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