Ever since riding into the Holiday Special – or at least since The Empire Strikes Back – Boba Fett has been a fan favorite. Was it the iconic, well-worn armor? Was it the fact that Darth Vader himself had to caution him against disintegrating his prey? Was it the jetpack?
Whatever the reason, the bounty hunter's popularity isn't diminished by his limited screen time. He only gets a few lines in The Empire Strikes Back, a speedy exit in Return of the Jedi, an appearance as a youngster in Attack of the Clones, and a few plot arcs in The Clone Wars. With so few appearances, it's understandable that fans to want to see more of his story. But where can you go to find out more about him?
Here, we'll highlight a couple of our favorite places to read more about the adventures of Boba Fett – and if that's not enough, we'll point out even more books you can turn to.
“The Sarlacc Found Me Somewhat Indigestible”
If you think Boba Fett's exit in Return of the Jedi wasn't befitting of the galaxy's most feared bounty hunter, you'll be happy to know that the Legends line of Star Wars literature agrees. Shortly after the destruction of Jabba's sail barge, Fett blasts his way out of the Sarlacc, which you can read about it in A Barve Like That: The Tale of Boba Fett, one of the short stories in Tales from Jabba's Palace. But it's after his escape that things get interesting.
The Bounty Hunter Wars is a trilogy by K. W. Jeter that begins shortly after Fett's explosive exit. Another bounty hunter, Dengar, is perusing the wreckage of Jabba's sail barge when he finds Fett, severely injured and with badly damaged armor. Dengar takes Fett to a cave to recuperate in relative safety. A woman named Neelah – an escaped dancer from Jabba's palace – finds him there. She has no memory of her life before her time with the Hutt, but somehow she thinks Fett might have something to do with her past.
The trilogy includes several flashbacks that explore the fascinating Bounty Hunters' Guild (and Fett's strained relationship with it) and the roots of a conspiracy that's still unfolding as the Galactic Civil War reaches its climax over Endor. We're introduced to Prince Xizor, leader of the Black Sun crime syndicate, who has pitched Emperor Palpatine a plan to turn the galaxy's bounty hunter's against each other. The survivors would go to work for the Empire, helping to crush the Rebellion. Fett played a vital role in that plan.
As we follow Fett, we learn the true identity of Neelah and her role in a titanic power struggle within one of the Empire's most significant military contractors. We also find out that Xizor may have had motives other than the Empire's final victory.
“He's No Good to Me Dead”
If the flashbacks in The Bounty Hunter Wars whetted your appetite for more Boba backstory, or if you're a graphic novel aficionado, another great series to check out is Star Wars: Blood Ties, initially published by Dark Horse Comics in 2010 and 2012.
The first series of four issues, A Tale of Jango and Boba Fett, begins when the bounty hunter was just a boy. Jango gives him a quest – to get a tooth from a balyeg, one of the most fearsome creatures in the galaxy. After having faced one, Boba need not fear anything else as long as he lives. Perhaps that helps explain his Sarlacc escape...
Jango takes Boba on assignment from Count Dooku to kill a man who has information that could imperil production of the clone army, only to find that it's an escaped clone. After killing him, Jango finds the clone had a son – technically, Jango's genetic child (lineage gets complicated with clones, apparently). He lets the child, Connor Freeman, and his mother live. Unfortunately for Jango, Mace Windu's lightsaber keeps him from ever explaining the situation to Boba.
Years later, Boba Fett gets a bounty on someone who had allegedly cheated a short-tempered crime lord in a game of sabacc. Fett learns that his prey is Connor Freeman, and his banker explains just how they're connected. In a story of redemption that shows us a different side of Fett's character, we see the two grow close as Freeman becomes one of the few individuals Fett cares about.
In the second series, Boba Fett is Dead, Fett and Freeman reunite, and we learn even more about Fett's past. It starts with a group of mercenaries trying to kill him; he swaps clothes with the criminal he'd been chasing and stages his own death while he tries to figure out who's after him. He makes a detour to warn Freeman – barely saving him in time, and then sending him on a personal mission to protect something important to Boba. Fett finds out who's behind the mercenaries, and we learn it's a ghost from his past... a past few of us would have imagined as we're shown yet another facet of this mysterious character.
“Follow Me, Friend”
Of course, we've barely scratched the surface: that's just two series out of the vast Expanded Universe. With Boba Fett's following, it's no surprise that he's been well represented in Star Wars media. In addition to the Blood Ties series, he was featured in several other Dark Horse comics (since collected in Star Wars Omnibus: Boba Fett). In The Force Unleashed II video game and companion novel, he plays a crucial role in Vader's attempt to catch Starkiller. And, in an alternative view of the Star Wars Universe after Return of the Jedi, he figures prominently in the Dark Empire comic series as well as the Legacy of the Force and Fate of the Jedi series of novels.
So, even if his time on the big screen is limited, there's plenty of reading adventures out there for fans of the dented helmet!