Star Wars books are always fun, especially now that so much is being put into them to make sure that they fit into the new canon. No matter the age group they are aimed at, every time I pick one up, I turn into that young boy who was first enchanted in 1977 by the images on the big screen.
Ken Liu’s new book is a collection of stories, and tall tales with a framing story built around it, about the one and only Luke Skywalker.
The young deckhands of the Wayward Current, a ship on its way to Canto Bight (soon to be seen in The Last Jedi) share tales over dinner, and before bedtime, before being caught up in an adventure of their own.
And all of the stories have one thing in common… they all centre around Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight. Spanning the time frame from A New Hope, all the way to the new era introduced in The Force Awakens, this collection of stories has something for everyone.
There’s the wonderfully playful and slightly meta The Myth Buster, that on more than one occasion had me laughing aloud. I think the only one that didn’t do much for me was a episode called The Tale of Lugubrious Mote, set during the opening events of Return of the Jedi.
The rest, however, add nicely to the tapestry of the Star Wars Universe, with a story about the aftermath of the battle of Jakku, Luke travelling the galaxy trying to learn more about the Jedi, and a fun adventure with his loyal droid, R2-D2.
Each story has its own voice, and is well told, and I love the glimpses we get of the Star Wars universe as a whole, even if some of the stories are undeniably tall tales. But even those stories feel like the fit into that amazing galaxy far, far away where my imagination has played for decades.
Liu tells some great stories, and I hope he goes on to write more Star Wars books. I would be remiss, however, if I didn’t mention the gorgeous art by J.G. Jones, the book’s cover, and each story has a piece of art to go with it that perfectly encapsulates the tone and feel of the story, and some of them need to be reproduced for collecting purposes.
This is a book that will entertain fans of all ages, there are things older readers will take away from the stories, and there are things younger readers will take away as well – we are all Luke Skywalker in a way, leading the adventure of our lives.
For me this was a fun return to realm of Star Wars, as it’s been a while since I had read a Star Wars novel, and it certainly builds up my anticipation for The Last Jedi!