Wrapping up my Age of Rebellion reviews, I figured I would save Luke and Leia for last and review them together.
You would kind of expect the Luke Skywalker entry in the Age of Rebellion series to be a big-hitter among the various offerings.
What we get kind of is and kind of isn’t. Grek Pak‘s story gives us some interesting things, but the visual style doesn’t quite impart the book with the weight it probably needs.
We see Luke taking part in a mission for the alliance, during which he is apparently contacted – psychically and through the Force – by the Emperor, who is trying to manipulate him from a distance.
This is quite a significant bit of storytelling, adding something meaningful to the canon: this idea that Palpatine was reaching Luke from across the stars, the same way Vader was.
And presumably, just like Vader kept his long-distance communications with Luke from Palpatine, Palpatine kept this from Vader too.
It also got me thinking that this probably is precisely what happened between Snoke and Ben Solo during or prior to Ben’s turn to the Dark Side: one would assume Snoke was in Ben’s mind, working on him from a distance – as we already see in The Last Jedi that Snoke has this ability to influence minds from a great distance (and even to “bridge” minds, as he does with Kylo and Rey in TLJ).
On that front, this is a really interesting story: the rest of the narrative is less interesting, however – though is otherwise a perfectly okay outing for any general Star Wars fan or Luke Skywalker enthusiast.
However, by far – by FAR – Age of Rebellion: Princess Leia is my favorite Age of Rebellion book.
Aside from the irresistible allure of the Dodsons’ unmistakeable touch in the cover art (I still salivate over the Dodson’s covers for the Princess Leia five-part series in 2014), this book manages to offer everything you could want.
A story set in a perfect niche (right before Return of the Jedi), covering a key piece of the lore. And while this is a top-draw Leia story, we also of course have plenty of Lando, Chewie, and even Bossk.
The story here shows Leia and Lando just prior to going to Tatooine to rescue Han from Jabba’s Palace: we get to see Leia’s acquisition of the iconic Boussh disguise, a skirmish with bounty hunters, and plenty of Leia taking her frustrations out on Lando (who, we have to assume, is still taking punishment over his actions on Bespin in Empire).
It’s a short tale, of course: and I think a similar story was done in the Forces of Destiny cartoon series (at least I seem to remember that happening). But it’s still a nice little slice of Star Wars and a great little piece of Leia mythology.