Sunday, September 7, 2014

Review of Kenobi

Book #36. Star Wars: Kenobi, by John Jackson Miller. Unabridged audio. 

In light of the coming new 7th Star Wars movie, Disney announced that the scores of Expanded Universe (EU) novels that have been published over the years are officially out of “canon” in terms of the “official” Star Wars timeline. So it’s possible that this book may not “count,” whatever that term means. But nevertheless – I enjoyed it very much.

The background for the novel is Obi-Wan’s life as an outcast in pre-New Hope Tatooine. His friend Anakin has turned to the Dark Side, an Empire is forming somewhere in the Galaxy, and young Luke Skywalker has been hidden on Tatooine. Obi-Wan, calling himself “Ben” now, has taken the role of Luke’s distant protector, tries to blend in.

But when you have the force, a lightsaber, and a concern for people at the bottom of society, it’s hard to keep a low profile. Ben involves himself in the drama of a small mining settlement, and even finds himself falling for a widow who owns a small retail establishment. The plot involves the business and politics of water harvesting, which is critical on a desert planet.

I read John Jackson Miller’s short story collection “Lost Tribe of the Sith,” and reviewed the collection here. Those stories took place in the distant past, and it was nice to see Miller take on a story in the “current day” Star Wars universe. Luke does not appear, but there are plenty of other familiar references (Jabba the Hutt plays a part in a subplot) to place this book firmly in the “world” of Star Wars. His ability to balance the story and the Star Wars setting was very positive.

The production of this audiobook is excellent. The foley work is skillfully performed, but not intrusive, and the music in the background is (as would be expected) very good.

Source: local library.

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