"Politics is little more than the systematic organization of hostilities"

Star Wars Books You Should Read If You Like
Political Intrigue

Star Wars Book About Yoda | Youtini Reading Guide

The galaxy is a big place. Over 50 million inhabited systems. Approximately 100 quadrillion beings. Each individual belonging to one of the nearly 20 million known sentient species. With such mind-boggling numbers, it should come as no surprise that governance plays a huge role in the stories that take place within the Star Wars EU. Whether it's the leader of a small tribe, a whole planet, or an entire galaxy, with every position of power comes the expectation of some degree of political acumen.

Throughout Star Wars history, the galaxy has been ruled by a number of different governing bodies both in Canon and in Legends. For thousands of generations, the Old Republic maintained a relative peace through the combined efforts of a galactic senate headed by a Supreme Chancellor. The Old Republic came to an abrupt end when the last of the Supreme Chancellors used his political cunning and prowess in the dark side of the Force to convert the Republic into a Galactic Empire, anointing himself Emperor in the process. During a galaxy-wide Civil War, the Rebel Alliance overthrew the Empire and formed what is now known as the New Republic.

Dive into the books listed below to get an in-depth look into each different governing body and the unique individuals who navigate their political currents. Whether its a former queen-turned-senator, a mysterious alien with an unmatched military mind, or a manipulative Sith Lord consolidating power, you're sure to find a story that satisfies that craving for political intrigue in the Star Wars Expanded Universe.

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Books in this Collection

The team at Youtini has hand-selected these books because they fit this theme.
Queen's Shadowamazon button
Young Adult Novel
Canon

Queen's Shadow

E. K. Johnston
28 BBY

What does one do after ruling an entire planet? For Padmé Amidala, that answer came easily: move on to even bigger things. However, transitioning from the throne on Naboo to a seat in the Galactic Senate is not without challenges, especially at such a young age. Uneasy alliances, ruthless media, and hidden agendas not only leave her wondering how she can possibly hope to instate positive change in the galaxy, but also how she can survive long enough to do it.

EK Johnston’s story bridges the gap between the Padmé fans see in The Phantom Menace and the one they see in Attack of the Clones. It largely expounds upon Naboo culture, including the fashion, government, and the role of the handmaidens.

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Thrawnamazon button
Adult Novel
Canon

Thrawn

Timothy Zahn
11 - 2 BBY

After stumbling upon an exiled Chiss on an abandoned planet, the Empire quickly realizes they may have found a new weapon. With his powerful intellect and devastating cunning, Thrawn is soon enrolled in the Imperial Academy on Coruscant along with Eli Vanto, new cadet for the Empire, serving as his translator. Despite mounting unhappiness with the unusual pair’s success, Thrawn and Eli climb the ranks in the Imperial military, just in time for a clash with a mysterious adversary known only as Nightswan…

Any villain as monumental as Grand Admiral Thrawn deserves an equally prodigious origin story, and this book delivers. With a healthy serving of mysteries to be solved, this tale of an unlikely alien’s climb to the zenith of the Empire is one of the Zahn’s most intriguing yet.

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Tarkinamazon button
Adult Novel
Canon

Tarkin

James Luceno
14 BBY

Compared with other villainous characters in the Star Wars universe, very little is known about Grand Moff Tarkin. Yet he remains one of the most hated Imperials of all time. He’s the one who gave the command that left Alderaan in ruins. He is unsympathetic and menacing. A man of true evil.

Leave it to James Luceno to craft a Wilhuff Tarkin origin story audiences never knew they needed. Five years after the birth of the Empire, we meet a man who has yet to rise through the ranks to become the tyrant we know he will become. Tarkin’s refusal to let anyone or anything stand in his path will get him exactly where he wants to go … but not without cost.

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Bloodlineamazon button
Adult Novel
Canon

Bloodline

Claudia Gray
28 ABY

After the fall of the Empire, the Senate is split into the Populist and Centrist parties. Both profess the goal of restoring the Republic, though they are unable to set aside their opposing views. Tired of the pointless bickering within the Senate, Leia takes on one final mission before retiring. However, the mission proves to be bigger than she originally thought, inducing chaos and unveiling corruption.

Leave it to Claudia Gray to make politics exciting with action and drama! Bloodline is also an excellent gateway into the sequel trilogy, making this an essential read for fans interested in that era.


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Darth Plagueisamazon button
Adult Novel
Legends

Darth Plagueis

James Luceno
67-65, 54-52, 34-32 BBY

Did you ever hear the tragedy of Darth Plagueis the Wise? It's a sprawling tale that establishes several important origin stories for characters fans know well. Readers learn how Plagueis seduced Palpatine to the dark side and how their alliance led to the Sith apprentice’s ultimate betrayal of his master. This is how darkness truly began to rise.

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Cloak of Deception amazon button
Adult Novel
Legends

Cloak of Deception

James Luceno
32.5 BBY

It may be lonely at the top…but it’s also dangerous. Chancellor Valorum learns that fact when a terrorist group makes an attempt against his life. However, there is no shortage of enemies for the leader of the Republic, and Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi are soon assigned to the case. As arguments spark in the Senate and the jockeying for power intensifies, it seems that someone must be benefitting…but who?

James Luceno delivers a story filled with conspiracy, duplicity, and political intrigue as he fleshes out the character of Chancellor Valorum and enlightens readers to just some of the turmoil that ultimately led to the vote of no confidence in his leadership.

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