Howdy again, y’all! I am back with a brand spanking new review… however, you’ve probably noticed by the title that it ain’t a Horus Heresy book review. Well, yes, I admit that I have done it again. I took a break and started reading something else. After this series I will jump back into Horus Heresy for a few more novels and will release reviews of a few more at a time. For now though, after each novel in Fate of the Jedi, I will be writing up a review for y’all. I might eventually go through and do this for every Star Wars novel in legends and new canon… but no promises.
So, let’s get this wagon moving…
Non-Spoiler Section (minor timeline spoilers for legends as a whole)
So let me start off by saying that I have had these books for a couple years now and never got around to reading them. This was a huge mistake on my part because I absolutely loved Outcast. In fact I went ahead and ordered the rest of this series in hardback so I could have a matching collection of them (already had some hardbacks of them but also had some in paperback).
The novel features a conflict of beliefs between the New Jedi Order and the Galactic Alliance government. This conflict gets to the boiling point and the Chief of State, Natasi Daala and Grand Master Luke Skywalker have a very interesting debate on the Jedi Order that really made me think about how “normal” people must view the Jedi and how Luke’s Order may not be as good as I had initially thought. I love his order of Jedi and abhor the prequel Jedi, but this made me see the issues with Luke’s Order.
Seeing the relationship of Imperial Head of State Jagged Fel and Jedi Knight Jaina Solo explored more was interesting and I was glad to see them trying to make their relationship work as in the past they’ve had their fair share of disagreements and have even been outright enemies on the battlefront.
Another great part is seeing more Force religions in action. I won’t mention which one nor the species that uses it at this part of the review, but they are called Sages, similar to the Zeffo Sages in the new canon game Jedi: Fallen Order, and I think some of the plot of that may draw inspiration from this, or that could just be wishful thinking. Also, exploring the father-son relationship of Luke and Ben Skywalker is really great, and seeing which pieces of Luke and Mara are in Ben is cool.
There’s more Lando Calrissian in this novel, and that is always a good thing, plus he’s got another scheme (surprise). And his wife Tendra gets a little more “screen” time, plus his young son Chance (Editor’s Note: not to be confused with his daughter, Community Chest) makes an appearance.
Various other big names also make appearances. People like: KypDurron (Imperial prisoner, Jedi apprentice, mass murderer, Sith pawn, and now Jedi Master), the man, the myth, the legend - Kyle Katarn, former Rebel pilot and retired New Republic General - Wedge Antilles, and many more. Also, Jacen Solo’s secret daughter Allana Solo, called Amelia Solo in public, and known to others as the adopted daughter of Han and Leia (they claim she is a war orphan), is explored more. She is a really cool character and I enjoyed seeing her get into things similar to what Jacen, Jaina, and Anakin Solo got into when they were her age. It was also good to see Leia and Han together instead of how they are portrayed in the new stuff. Plus, Leia is a Jedi Knight.
All in all, the plot is revolving around certain Jedi who have mental issues of some sort and the Jedi are trying to understand what is happening to them. Meanwhile the GA and the JO are in a legal battle over... Stuff… and it is making the investigation difficult. Luke and Ben Skywalker go on a mission to retrace Jacen Solo’s path of learning from various Force religions to try and help with the earlier problems and also to see if they can see when exactly Jacen became corrupted.
And that’s as far as I can go without getting super spoilery.
I’d give the book a 10/10. Awesome story, well rounded characters, left me wanting to read the next book before even writing this, and the story made me sit back and think about the Jedi and whether what they do is morally right or not.
Thar be Spoilers Here
Alrighty, lets get boppin. The fact that the galaxy is now effectively under the control of entirely former Imperials makes me super happy as I am an Imperial lover (yeah fite me Rebel Scum!) (E.N. GHG takes no responsibility for Cowboy Cam disappearing under mysterious, allegedly Rebel-Scum-related circumstances following this review).
Daala leads the Alliance, Jagged Fel, the son of Baron Soontir Fel, leads the Imperial Remnant, and the leader of the Confederation was also a former Imperial… Turr Phennir I think was the name (another pilot from the 181st like Baron Fel). Also, this book teases the creation of the Imperial Knights as Jag Fel suggests Jaina come to the Empire and open up a rival Jedi School.
Daala makes the claim that the Jedi are above the law and that they shouldn’t be. They do not have to cooperate with the government police agencies, and it is causing a fuss amongst peace officers and leaders of the three governments.
I had never thought about how the Jedi under Luke were a loose cannon. And they really are, because unlike the Jedi of old, they aren’t an official part of the New Republic/Galactic Alliance (whatever, they’re all Rebels). This is both a good thing and a bad thing. No corruption of the government will make the Jedi corrupt. But now they don’t have an official capacity in the government and operate outside of the law.
It is an interesting dilemma and Luke actually concedes her point and realizes that it could cause Jedi of the future to actually become judge, jury, and executioner, as Daala claims. She also brings up the Kyp Durron argument and I totally agree with her. This dude literally murders millions of people, many of whom are civilians or members and teachers at military academies, and he doesn’t get thrown in prison, doesn’t get executed, and isn’t extradited to the Imperial Remnant for trial. He just gets slapped on the wrist and rejoins the Jedi Order and is now a Jedi Master.
Is he reformed? Yes.
Should he have had a real punishment? Yes.
The banishment of Luke from Coruscant is absolutely wild. I knew it was coming because I’d heard of it years before I read these, but how it happened was a shock. Also, reading about the way that the government put limitations on the Jedi Order and saddled them with observers made me think of some totalitarian regime (very Imperial, lol). But the banishment takes them to the homeworld of the Kel Dor people - ya know, Plo Koon’s peeps - and they encounter the Baran Do Sages - one of the various Force religions out in the galaxy.
This one isn’t a martial religion however: they started out basically as meteorologists in ancient times, warning their people of incoming massive storms on their world. Over time it developed into other disciplines, but it is one that wants peace not war.
There are some who train to fight, but they use wooden staves and not something that is gonna cut someone in half. They can also channel lightning that isn’t dark side energy. They can control wind, too. They very much remind me of wizards in a fantasy setting.
While on the planet, Luke and Ben discover a secret underground society amongst the Baran Do Sages. It is a hidden society that a former Grand Master of the Baran Do created to preserve their culture in the case that something like Order 66 ever happened again. It was a depository of their knowledge plus a group of people to repopulate their religion in case the Imperials that are now in charge of the galaxy effect Jedi Purge 2: Electric Boogaloo. Makes sense on the surface but instead the leader is a despot that doesn’t allow independent thought, no creation of anything new, no new skills are to be learned, and all they do is work, eat, sleep, repeat. So everyone is miserable (E.N. sounds very life-like).
Luke and Ben eventually convince them all that their underground society is dumb and that they should leave but Ben has to beat their champion in combat and Luke has to battle the King fellow to do this. They then leave and return these people to the surface to reunite them with their friends and family (forgot to mention that they all fake their deaths in order to get down there and convince outsiders that it’s just some ritual they do when they die but really instead of burning in their pyres, they have a secret chamber to escape the funeral area).
Lando has a glitterstim production facility on Kessel, and Kessel has a bunch of groundquakes that are gonna destroy the whole… planet? Asteroid?... whatever (E.N. dammit, man, which one is it?!). So, Han and Leia and Amelia set off to save the day, Han and Leia almost die in a tunnel collapse and interact with giant energy spiders, normal herbivore giant spiders, glowing balls of light that short out electronics yet are somehow data chips, and Amelia gets talked to by some sort of extra dimensional being possibly.
Fun times are had. (E.N. sounds like glitterstim, alright!)
The plan is, since the data chip lights are blowing up the planet with underground facilities made by the Celestials (who also made Centerpoint Station and the Maw Cluster of Black Holes to name a few), that they are gonna blow up the facilities before the lights - called bogeys - do. This doesn’t sound smart at all but hey what do I know, I’m not a scientist. So they enlist the help of a bunch of former pilots and they blow the places up and save Kessel and Lando’s current scheme (he really does have the worst luck at business ventures and should just stick to gambling).
I just realized I have neglected to mention what is arguably the main plot… oops. (E.N. “oops?!)
Corran and Mirax Horn’s son Valin Horn goes nuckingfuts and thinks everyone around him is an imposter and that they’ve kidnapped his family and other Jedi, etc. He gets captured and examined by the Jedi but scans show he is brain dead which is obviously not true. His symptoms are similar to a Jedi named Seff. Eventually, the government takes Valin and puts him in carbon freeze in the Armand Isard Correctional Facility, and the Jedi figure out Seff is trying to break in and get him. Seff also has abnormal brain scans and also sees everyone else as imposters so the Jedi know they gotta nab him.
They eventually do but it is only non Masters who do so, to keep the Order in the clear.
Loads of other stuff happens, too, but that’s as far as I’ll get into it. I don’t want to spoil literally everything but it is a very good read and I highly recommend it. Might want to read New Jedi Order and Legacy of the Force prior to this, but it isn’t absolutely necessary. It spoils bits from the plots of those but if y’all don’t know most of the spoilers from those yet I would be surprised.
Well, adios amigos, I reckon I will be heading on out now.
See ya somewhere else on the trail, partner…
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