|Submitted by Pete Tzinski |
(Aug 16, 2002)
I recall the first time I picked up a copy of I, Jedi. I think I was the absolute last person in my circle of geeks who read between games of D&D (Silly me, I read DURING the games) to pick up a copy of the novel. Unfortunately, it was just because I was cheap. I considered using the excuse of being a fledgling, peniless writer scraping out an existence while struggling for his art, but...well, no, I was just cheap. I didn't want to spend that much on the hardcover edition, so I sat around and waited for the paperback.
After reading it, I came to the realization that it was a novel I very well could have spent the money on for the hardcover right when it came out, and it would have earned every cent of the price.
But then, I should have trusted Mr. Stackpole in his ability to deliver an amazing story, brilliant characters, and all wrapped up in an original package which is different from the norm. After reading his X-Wing series, how could I be doubting his abilties?
Mea Culpa. This book was brilliant.
For one thing, I do not believe that I have ever, in my many years of reading and devouring literature of all walks, seen a novel which was written entirely from the first person ("I") voice. To top it off, every character is true to form, as we have seen them in the X-Wing series, or in the movies...but they aren't limited in that respect. We aren't seeing lines or scenes from the Star Wars saga rehashed, hoping to make the book a seller by recovering old territory. They have it all as a viable, beautiful, past...and then they move on into the future, and the story.
I could go through the story and give thoughts on it all, but there's so much there, that this review would begin to number in pages close to the length of the selfsame book I'm discussing!
I will point out one particular fact which I found to be of amazing interest. Be warned...if you've not read the book, this will spoil a good bit of it for you. So go buy the book before you finish reading this.
Throughout the events in the story which take place at the Jedi Acadamy, I found it fabulous to read how he managed to seamlessly and perfectly integrate Corran Horn into the events of the Jedi Acadamy Trilogy (written by Kevin J. Anderson), which detail an amazing series of events around an ancient Sith Lord. Somehow, we discover Corran was there through all of it. And he just conveniently is not around when a scene from the Jedi Acadamy Trilogy comes into play. He's off doing something else. Mr Stackpole, should you read this review I would like you applaud you for your work there.
Everything, from the casual wit and humor, the charm, the character interaction, the dynamic and well-planned fight scenes, the histories and relationships, and the classic timeless plot of the Good Guys vs. the Bad Guys, make this an integeral part of the Star Wars saga, as much as Timothy Zahn's Thrawn novels...or indeed, the movies themselves! While it helps to have read the X-Wing series before you tackle this lengthy novel, it's hardly required.
Now, I bid you...go! Quick! Either buy this book and read vicariously, or go pull it from your shelves, dust it off, and read it vicariously again. I've read it many more times than I can count, and I don't doubt that I will surly read it again, and again in the future.
And in case you didn't catch it...yes, this is a glowing review of absolute praise. Just to clear it up for any of those confused. :)