There is no emotion, there is peace. There is no ignorance, there is knowledge. There is no passion, there is serenity. There is no chaos, there is harmony. There is no death, there is the Force.
Darkness rises, and light to meet it….
For dozens of millenia (or, if you prefer, “a thousand generations”), the Jedi Knights served the galaxy as devotees of the light side of the Force. They stood for peace and justice, defending the oppressed and vulnerable. Their sense of service and their dedication to the light set them at odds with the Sith, an order descended from fallen and outcast Jedi devoted to power for its own sake and domination over the galaxy.
But the Jedi weren’t perfect. They were normal, fallible sentients. Many fell to the temptations of the dark side, sometimes with disastrous and far-reaching consequences. The Legends timeline is peppered with such stories, from the original Jedi exiles that became the first Lords of the Sith to Exar Kun to Revan and Malak and, of course, Anakin Skywalker.
The Order itself was subject to its own biases, and was at times profoundly complacent. “At the height of their power,” Luke Skywalker says, “they allowed Darth Sidious to rise, create the Empire, and wipe them out. It was a Jedi Master who was responsible for the training and creation of Darth Vader.”
Then again, as Luke’s last apprentice pointed out, it was “a Jedi who saved him.”
Star Wars is many things to many people. For some, it’s starships, blasters, alien planets, and droids. For others, Star Wars is scoundrels, smugglers, and bounty hunters. But no matter what part of this rich tapestry is your favorite, it’s hard to dispute that one of the core elements of the franchise is this mystical order of guardian warriors. The fortunes of the galaxy and its inhabitants tended to parallel the triumphs and tragedies of the Jedi Order. Their victories and defeats are at the very heart of the mythos we all enjoy.
Being a Jedi turned Sith and finding redemption, Revan has become one of the most powerful Force users by practicing balance between the light and dark sides. Learning how he broke free of the dark side but continuing to draw on its power of his own will puts powerful Force use into perspective.
This novel takes place after the Knights of the Old Republic video game, starting with Revan and Bastilla contemplating their future together. But a threat to the galaxy begins to reveal itself, forcing Revan to leave his wife and unborn child behind to make sure the world is a safe place for his family in the years to come. On the way he encounters Scourge, a Sith strong in the dark side of the Force who intends to break his willpower.
Few know much about Count Dooku or his past that led him from the highest ranks of the Jedi Order to the knee of Darth Sidious. But when he charges his new assassin, Asajj Ventress, with her first mission, he also opens a window into his past. That past, riddled with dark prophecies and broken relationships is the key to Ventress understanding her new master…and his weaknesses.
Cavan Scott, bolstered by a whole host of voice actors, delivers one of the most engaging, immersive stories in all of the Expanded Universe with Dooku: Jedi Lost. This origin story enriches Dooku’s character so much that it even manages to elevate his on-screen appearances in the films.
The relationship between Jedi Master and Padawan is tumultuous as often as it is tight. Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi Wan Kenobi know this fact all too well. In the midst of their struggles to work together, Qui-Gon gets an offer that would allow them to part ways forever. However, after being sent on what may be their final mission together, Qui-Gon begins have visions that cast everyone’s future into doubt.
Claudia Gray once again does what she does best by delivering a moving, impactful story that delves into big questions surrounding the Force. She was entrusted with hugely important characters and uses them expertly.
Star Wars Rebels tugged on the heartstrings of countless fans, and this story is where it all began. Taking place before the beloved show, A New Dawn shows us how Kanan and Hera were destined to cross paths and fight together in the Galactic Civil War.
Being the first novel released in the new Canon era of Star Wars books, John Jackson Miller leaves a lasting first impression on what’s to come.
Following Order 66, General Obi Wan Kenobi vanished from the galaxy along with all the other Jedi. Years later, he re-emerged as a crazy old hermit by the name of Ben to play a hand in the fate of the galaxy. However, much more happened in the preceding years than one might expect. Even on a backwater planet like Tatooine, there is conflict, and soon Ben finds himself wrapped up in a decades-long feud between the moisture farmers and their arch nemeses, the Tusken Raiders. Ben must find a way to get to the bottom of an ever-deepening mystery that lies beneath the conflict while also keeping his identity—and his true purpose on Tatooine—a secret.
Kenobi is hands down one of the best books in the Expanded Universe. John Jackson Miller crafted a well-written, easy-to-read piece that not only focuses on one of the most beloved characters in all of Star Wars, but also manages to fill in a crucial gap in the story between movie trilogies. It takes the Western influences in Star Wars and runs with them to create not only an engaging story, but an essential one.
After the events of Order 66, survivors of the Jedi Purge must navigate the galaxy undetected. It's been a year since Ahsoka Tano watched the Galactic Republic fall, and she's leaving yet another planet to dodge Imperial suspicion and start over. Again. Something strange is happening, however, and she can't help but let her curiosity get her into serious trouble.
E.K. Johnston's young adult novel builds an important bridge between the Ahsoka we knew from The Clone Wars and the Fulcrum we meet in Star Wars Rebels. It's in this story that our hero must come to terms with her past and discover the role she is meant to play in her darkened galaxy's future.
This trade paperback collects four issues from Marvel's Star Wars: Age of Republic series. Readers are treated to never-before-seen adventures that add depth and nuance to Qui-Got, Obi-Wan, Anakin, and Padme as well as two short stories from the Age of Republic Special.
Jedi Search is the first novel in the Jedi Academy Trilogy, and it details the beginnings of a new Jedi academy that Luke is determined to build. The book tells stories of Luke’s search for Force-sensitive beings in the galaxy, Leia’s governmental duties and raising her children, and Han Solo and Chewbacca attempting to stop a dangerous weapon.
The book takes place in the years after the original trilogy, under the New Republic. It is an important story in the expanded universe, as it details the beginnings of Luke’s creation of a Jedi Academy and his first step into training the next generation of Jedi, while continuing to detail the clashes between the New Republic and the scattered factions of the Empire.
Dark Apprentice is the second novel in the Jedi Academy Trilogy, and continues both the story of the weapon that Han Solo and Chewbacca were involved in and the story of Luke’s new Jedi academy. Luke faces his first real test in his academy, as one of his students, who is already exceptional in his abilities, begins to learn about and probe into the Dark Side.
Luke faces a threat that he alone cannot overcome as the student begins to wreak havoc in his academy and in the galaxy. This is an exciting story and a great look into the difficulties of Luke’s developing of the next generation of Jedi.
Champions of the Force is the final novel in the Jedi Academy Trilogy, and continues the story of Kyp Durron, the Jedi-pupil-turned-Dark-Side-user. This is an exciting end to the trilogy, as the stories of Han Solo, Luke, Kyp, and the superweapon all intersect.
Published in 1994, Champions of the Force is a fitting end to the trilogy and wraps up the various story arcs in a way that is surprising and enjoyable. Fans of the series or of Luke should definitely read this novel.