T

he debut of The High Republic Show this week brought with it many exclusive behind-the-scenes insights into how this new era’s stories came to life. But we also got several unexpected reveals at the tail end of the first episode -- including the announcement of a new book releasing this fall on September 7, 2021.

Life Day Treasury: Holiday Stories from a Galaxy Far, Far Away -- co-authored by Cavan Scott and George Mann -- is a collection of eight stories formatted similarly to past Star Wars collections such as Myths & Fables and Dark Legends

Each story will focus on the in-universe celebrations of Life Day, and at least one of them will take place during the High Republic era.

And if a new book announcement isn’t quite enough to get you excited about upcoming releases -- there are almost a dozen more books on the way in 2021 that we know about -- StarWars.com also released an excerpt from Alexander Freed’s upcoming epic Alphabet Squadron finale Victory’s Price earlier today.

Here’s part of that excerpt, in case you can’t wait until March to dive in.

--

Flare Squadron and Hail Squadron were in flight now, breaking to either side of Wyl and Wild Squadron. One TIE swept toward each of the New Republic squadrons, releasing a swift cannon volley that spattered against rocks or fizzled with distance. Flare and Hail’s TIEs turned to retreat after firing, but the last TIE stayed on course. Wyl could see it ahead of him, its central eye occluded by a passing asteroid.

What are you planning?

The TIE juked to one side. Wyl called out a warning to Denish Wraive, but the TIE’s next cannon burst wasn’t aimed at the elderly man’s fighter. Instead the bolts impacted the closest asteroid and shattered it. Wyl could see fragments, shrapnel, exploding toward him, exploding toward Wraive . . .

“Watch out!” he cried, leaning over the console as he gave his thrusters a burst, then pulled up to avoid smashing into another asteroid. Wraive was still alive — still on the scanner, at least — but the TIE had moved on beneath and past him, slipping between rocks for cover as New Republic fighters returned fire. “It’s baiting us!” he said. “Keep on course for the freighter and don’t engage unless necessary!”

But the TIE never moved to engage. Instead it continued cracking asteroids. It flickered in and out of scanner visibility as it activated jammers, and Wyl listened to the alarmed cries of his pilots interspersed with static. He prepared to turn back but saw with alarm that he’d outdistanced his comrades — the A-wing had pulled away when the first cloud of shrapnel had separated him from the slower fighters.

Had that been intentional? He couldn’t tell. It didn’t matter.

Wild Nine and Twelve had lost control evading the asteroids; they both went spiraling through the squadron, forcing the other fighters to scatter. The TIE had a clear path back to its freighter now, but Wyl was closer and the Deliverance had accelerated to frightening speed, plowing through the asteroid field and ignoring the rocks that dashed against its deflectors.

“They’re getting ready to jump.” It was Syndulla’s voice, almost growling from the comm. “They’re not responding to demands for surrender. If you can stop them—”

“I will pursue the TIE,” Kairos said. “Go after the freighter.”

Wyl didn’t know where the U-wing was and didn’t dare check. The asteroids were getting smaller — he was reaching the limit of the field — and he could see the freighter and its escorts in the distance, adjusting their course for a lightspeed jump.

He trusted Kairos. He trusted Syndulla. His gloved hand played across the console as he switched power from his shields to his thrusters. The A-wing sang a high-pitched metallic melody.

His cannons wouldn’t do any real damage to the freighter in the time he had left. He armed a concussion missile, pointed himself at the bright beads of the freighter’s thrusters, and ignored the chatter of the fighters behind him. Be a soldier, not a leader, he told himself. That’s what they need from you now.

“There is no violence in gravity. The empty sun consumes,” Chass said, then added: “Mess up their faces.”

He didn’t understand why she’d taken up prayer, or why she was quoting over the comm so much lately; but he’d take whatever help he could get.

His targeting computer unfolded. He was squeezing his firing trigger when another voice came through, garbled and nearly indecipherable:

“This is Lieutenant Quell of the 204th Imperial Fighter Wing. Withdraw immediately or be destroyed.”

--

You can read the full book excerpt on StarWars.com.

The final installment of the Alphabet Squadron trilogy will be available March 2, 2021. You can view our complete Book Profile for more details and pre-order your copy now.

For a complete list of recent and upcoming Star Wars book and comic releases, visit our regularly updated Release Schedule.


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Meg is a writer, podcaster, and photographer. She lives in Illinois with her dog and medal-worthy book collection, and believes any conversation in which Star Wars references are applicable is one worth having.

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