The Joiner King

Apparently, there are new Star Wars books set later in the continuity than the New Jedi Order stuff (which has ended, so that partially explains that.) I read it between two weeks and a month ago. I wonder, therefore, if I can remember the title. …and, as it happens, I did so while explaining myself just now. It’s the Dark Nest trilogy, with this particular first book being called The Joiner King.

Even after over a decade of books detailing the rise of the new generation of characters, I’m still only minimally attached to them. It didn’t help my enjoyment of the book that a lot of what happened revolved around pheromones changing peoples’ brain chemistries such that they act in new and unexpected ways. I’m not going to come out and call it a sloppy plot device until I see how it plays out over the next couple of books, because, right, trilogy. Nevertheless, it tainted an otherwise fairly decent story. Standard adventury goodness, some rehashing of the Jedi trying to find their way in a changed galaxy and the government trying to find its way in a new galaxy, but those parts worked despite being rehashed, because the galaxy is more fundamentally changed than it was even after the fall of the Empire.

My favorite part was incidental so far, involving Luke’s discovery of some old recordings of his father and mother in Artoo’s memory banks that the droid keeps trying to prevent him from seeing, for reasons unknown. Because, like I started to say before, I’m mostly still interested in the original characters, 10 years on or not.

In sum: Interesting main plot conceit. Tantalizing side story. Character Template Modifications of Weirdness +2. Decent new characters. (An Ewok with a death mark on his head in multiple systems; cheesy, but it makes me giggle.) It’s not bad Star Wars, but I’d claim that most bad Star Wars has been stamped out these days. Not brilliant Star Wars, either. If you were already going to read it anyway, still do; if you weren’t, I’m not here to change your mind.

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