There are things in the universe that are simply and purely evil. A warrior does not seek to understand them, or to compromise with them. He seeks only to obliterate them.
This post is sponsored by Patreon contributor Cheryl Bell.
The Empire had many more terrors to offer the universe than the Emperor and Vader. In fact, its most formidable may have also been its most unexpected. Grand Admiral Thrawn, exile of his own people, found a second life with the Empire. Despite a lack of Force powers, he fought his way to the top of its military, dismantling his opposition with nothing more than simple, inalienable intellect.
Throughout his meteoric rise, Thrawn is constantly engaged in climactic battles, as well as deciphering seemingly unsolvable mysteries in an effort to strengthen the Empire’s control on the galaxy. Readers will be thrilled by his decisive victories, both on the battlefield and his personal conflicts. Therefore, those fans who will enjoy reading material about Thrawn the most are those who enjoy militaristic novels, Empire-centric stories, and cognitively-challenging mysteries.
Despite being the focus of thoroughly entertaining stories, Thrawn is an important character for fans to know because he is largely responsible for the continuation of the Empire after the Emperor’s death. In fact, Timothy Zahn is widely credited with revitalizing Star Wars with several of the stories in this collection after the Original Trilogy ended.
Regardless of your reasons for looking into this collection, you can be sure of one thing: with the Grand Admiral at the helm, the Empire is poised to strike first as well as strike back.
Heir to the Empire is essential reading material because without it, the rest of the Expanded Universe might not exist. In this book, Zahn manages to construct a new type of Star Wars villain in Grand Admiral Thrawn who defeats his enemies with superior intellect that is every bit as overwhelming as Vader’s Force choke. Luke, Han, Leia, and the entire cast of the Original Trilogy make their triumphant return and must find a way to deal with this new threat who is poised to bring back the Empire even stronger than it was before.
Timothy Zahn has arguably crafted some of the most important books in the Expanded Universe and they all started with Heir to the Empire.
The New Republic is already on the brink of collapse with Grand Admiral Thrawn’s plight to re-conquer the galaxy, but its problems are far from over. A traitor has found its way into the highest level of its leadership at the same time as Luke Skywalker has been lured away by the promises of the long-forgotten, unstable Jedi Jorus C’baoth. Just as things seem as dark as they can get, Han and Lando learn that Thrawn is on the brink of making a discovery that could bring an end to the New Republic altogether.
The second installment of the Thrawn trilogy manages to raise the stakes even higher than the first. Timothy Zahn—like Grand Admiral Thrawn himself—is in top form in this novel.
Grand Admiral Thrawn and his Imperial remnants make their final push to regain control of the galaxy with a strike at the very heart of the New Republic. As Leia struggles to hold government—and her family—together, Han and Chewbacca go on a mission to rally their fellow smugglers to the cause. As Luke returns to lend his help, it quickly becomes apparent that his most daunting challenge still lies ahead: confronting the darkness in himself.
Zahn rounds out this triumphant trilogy with a final chapter that worthy of its predecessors. Readers who have followed Thrawn’s story to this point will be riveted until the final pages that give a fitting end to one of the most formidable villains Star Wars fans have ever known.
Horror comes in many forms. For Leia and Han, it takes the form of a conspiracy that threatens to topple the galaxy’s new government before it ever has a chance to truly start. For Luke and Lando, it takes the form of a cluster of attacks from clone-crewed pirate ships. For the New Republic as a whole, it takes the form of an evil believed to be long dead: Grand Admiral Thrawn.
Against readers’ expectations, Timothy Zahn picks up the story of Grand Admiral Thrawn right where he left it to spin a brand new tale of intrigue. With plenty of twists and turns, you won’t have this story figured out until its final chapters.
The New Republic, born of fire and chaos, remains fragile. Its renowned spies, the Bothans, find themselves accused of several horrendous attacks around the galaxy. If rumors can be trusted, their next attack will strike right at the heart of the New Republic. Luke, Mara Jade, Han, and Leia must not only uncover the truth of the accusations, but also their source. Unfortunately, all signs seem to point towards one man whose very name makes their blood run cold: Grand Admiral Thrawn.
Vision of the Future is the second half of the Hand of Thrawn duology, taking place directly after Specter of the Past. In this book, Zahn manages to expertly weave together several subplots on a journey that ultimately answers the question on every reader’s mind: just what happened to Grand Admiral Thrawn?
Throughout all Star Wars stories, you’d be hard-pressed to find two villains held in higher regard than Darth Vader and Grand Admiral Thrawn. Though they operate entirely differently, both are incredibly effective tools of the Emperor. When they’re sent to the planet Batuu on the same mission, they must find a way to work together. However, sparks fly as memories of a mission long past involving a younger Thrawn and Anakin Skywalker resurface…
Timothy Zahn weaves together the prequel era with the rebellion era in this novel that manages to pull together some of the biggest names that Star Wars has to offer. While attempting to balance the prowess of Vader with the intellect of Thrawn, it manages to offer a glimpse in the characters’ futures as well as their pasts.