The story of Star Wars is one of the most critical aspects of the franchise. The story plays a huge part in bringing fans together. It’s a cautionary tale meant to guide us through childhood and into adulthood. The Lucasfilm Publishing panel (link below) revealed a slew of new books set in a galaxy far, far away. Written by some who are new to Star Wars fiction, and old favorites. This diverse group is sure to bring you more exciting tales of the Star Wars universe.
A New Story is Told
One of the newer authors on the panel is Star Wars is Preeti Chhibbar. Chhibbar, who also wrote A Jedi You Will Be (coming in October), was tapped to pen one of the short stories in the upcoming book, The Clone Wars: Stories of Light and Dark. Chhibbar reveals which story she wrote and the perspective from which to tell it.
“I’m writing Anakin’s story during “Hostage Crisis” — an episode in the first season of The Clone Wars. I decided to write the story entirely from Anakin’s perspective, which meant being inside his head before the fall, but where we are starting to see more of the warning signs. And then there’s also the romance of this episode!”Preeti Chhibbar
This is what makes Star Wars books so integral to the overall story. With the books and the comics, we get a more all-encompassing perspective on what is happening off-camera. The upcoming stories span over several periods, from the prequels to the OT and sequels. Greg Pak is writing the third volume of Darth Vader comics. Pak revealed that when writing the Darth Vader series, he consulted with E.K. Johnston (Queen’s Shadow, Queen’s Peril) about writing Padme’s handmaiden’s. When asked by Lucasfilm Senior Editor, Robert Simpson, Pak said, “Queen’s Shadow gave me a lot to think about. If you like what we’re doing with Sabe, definitely read her (Johnston) books.”
Tie-ins to the Sequel Trilogy
Pak also said that by the end of the first arc, Vader will “suffer a terrible punishment. And there are key elements that will tie into episode 9 in a huge way.” That’s exciting! Fans have been clamoring for more tie-ins to the sequel trilogy, and it looks like we’re finally getting a taste.
Grimms Star Wars Tales
Several more authors revealed what they’ve been working on and insights into their craft. George Mann announced that he’s been writing a book like last years’ Myth & Fables (one of my personal favorites), called Star Wars: Dark Legends, which comes out July 28th. “We really wanted to delve into the darker, spookier area of the Star Wars universe.”
Justina Ireland revealed a juicy nugget about her upcoming Junior novel set during the High Republic, A Test of Courage. “If fans are familiar with Sana Starros (Marvel Star Wars vol. 1, Last Shot), we know she’s a ruthless scoundrel.” And claimed to be married to Han for a while (sorry that story is 5 years old). “Many hundreds of years earlier, we’ll see her ancestor Avon Starros.” Avon is the 12-year old girl that is central in A Test of Courage, which drops January 2021.
Kids Are Smarter
Tom Angleberger is such a gem! His enthusiasm bleeds through and onto the page. When asked about which story he is writing for The Empire Strikes Back FACPOV book due out in October, it took a bit for Tom to give in, in fear of getting the ax from Lucasfilm, but he did say he’s returning to write the Journal of the Whills
Timothy Thrawn…I mean Zahn was there to talk about Thrawn: Ascendancy, which comes out September 1st. “With this trilogy, I was able to build up the Chiss Ascendancy from the ground up. How the military works, how families work. The focus will be on Thrawn. Someone has the Ascendancy in their sights, and it’s up to the Chiss to figure out how do deal with them.”
Doctor Aphra & co.
Alyssa Wong took over as writer for the comic book series Doctor Aphra in April and is doing a fantastic job. Aphra has ditched her murder droid partners and is working more now as a team with new players. Wong’s background in horror is definitely noticeable thus far and works so well with artist Marika Cresta. This series is highly recommended if you like space archaeology with a dash of creepiness. Doctor Aphra has two issues out now, so wait until you’re done reading this then go read those.
Alex Segura has a new Poe Dameron YA novel coming in August called Free Fall, which Segura called a crime novel in space. Segura spoke a little bit about a particular part of Poe’s history and his experience writing mystery. “It’s a coming of age story. A lot of it is knowing how to play the mystery. How to leave a few clues and how to get someone engaged. One of the first people you meet early on is a young girl about Poe’s age called Zorri Wynn.” Wynn? Does Zorri get married? Or maybe she changed her name for safety’s sake? I guess we’ll have to wait until August 5th. And yes, she has the helmet!
Rebecca Roanhorse also talked about being asked to write Maul’s story in the upcoming The Clone Wars: Stories of Light and Dark. “He’s such a great character and a rich villain. He’s smart and full of vengeance.” Roanhorse is writing about Maul’s return and his lust for revenge against Kenobi (cue Sam Witwer, Kenobi!).
More Books a-comin’
A few more books were announced as well including The Lightsaber Collection which gorgeously illustrates some of the most recognizable lightsaber hilts in Star Wars. The Lightsaber Collection comes out in October 2020. October will also see the return of the weekly series from IDW, Star Wars Adventures Shadows of Vader’s Castle, written by Cavan Scott and illustrated by Derek Charm and covers by Francesco Francavilla. Also from IDW, Star Wars Adventures is getting a reboot with new stories from a new era. Amy Ratcliffe is also writing the next installment in the Art Of books, with the Art of Galaxy’s Edge which will come out later this year.
Watch the Lucasfilm Publishing Panel—Comic-Con@Home
Friday, July 24th • 12:00pm – 1:00pm PT, Kristin Baver host of This Week in Star Wars and The Star Wars Book Club and Lucasfilm Publishing Editor Robert Simpson moderate a panel consisting of Justina Ireland, Preeti Chhibber, Rebecca Roanhorse, Alyssa Wong, Timothy Zahn, Alex Segura, George Mann, Tom Angleberger, and Greg Pak. Click on the link below to watch.