Star Wars: A New Dawn (2014) – John Jackson Miller


So far, with the exclusion of Aftermath, sorry to say, Disney has done a nice job handling the Star Wars universe, tying in all the films, television series, comics and books into one full tapestry.

I loved the first season of Rebels, and was delighted to hear about Miller’s book that would show us how Kanan Jarrus, the would be rogue, and former Jedi Padawan meets up with Twi’lek pilot, Hera Syndulla. Not only does Miller get to tell this story, he grounds it very much in the Star Wars universe, and it feels like a Star Wars tale as well.

We discover Kanan on the planet Gorse, working as a pilot, ferrying dangerous minerals from the nearby moon of Cynda. The minerals are used by the Empire in their construction of Star Destroyers, but Kanan has no real qualms about working for them. He just works for a while before moving on to something else.

But he doesn’t get a chance to leave this time. He gets caught up in a big adventure as a business man, Count Vidian arrives on the Star Destroyer Ultimatum. Under the Emperor’s orders, he has to harvest the mineral from the planet, and deliver more of it than ever before.

And when a slightly deranged worker, Skelly, gives Vidian exactly the info and plan he needs, things get troubling for all involved.

Hera arrives on Gorse hoping to meet up with one of the employees in the surveillance department, but when her contact is captured by the Empire, she meets up with Zaluna a Sullustan, who has worked in Transcepts forever, and now has the information Hera needs.


The foursome find themselves thrown together in a desperate attempt to stop Vidian and his plan.

I do like that Kanan is not quite who we know him in the series, he’s still trying to hide out, and just play the charming rogue, without committing to anything, but he’s intrigued by Hera, and soon finds himself helping her out.

Miller’s book is tightly paced, and moves along at the rapid pace that you would expect of a Star Wars story, rocketing from one escapade to another, as Vidian menaces not only our heroes but the entire system. He knows the universe, knows what things to reference, and how to move his story along moment to moment, using his own creations and those already established.

I do like seeing how Kanan and Hera met, how everything falls into place, what he’s been up to since Order 66, something that is being explored in the comics, and how, so far, none of the story threads across the show, book, and comic are in conflict with one another. Someone is paying attention!

While I lament the loss of the Expanded Universe previously established in the novels, I am beginning to settle in nicely with the new stories being created.

Have you read any of the new books? Are you a fan of Rebels? Can you believe it’s almost time for the new movie?!!


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