11.19.2009

Last of the Jedi Vol 8 / Jude Watson : 4 of 5

I'm still enjoying these fantastic Star Wars children's books (with totally non-childish quality!), and while the plot of this volume wasn't exactly spectacular, there were still a few elements that made it stand out among the other books in this series. In true Lucas style, there are several simultaneous stories going on with quick transitions from one chapter to the next, which really gives things a Star Wars feel. Ferus is still undercover with the Empire, Trever is also undercover at the Imperial military academy, and the rest of the resistance is working behind the scenes. The narrative also switches the point of view very well, contrasting the conflict going on in Ferus' head with Vader's tormented memories of Padme. There are some great insights into Ferus' character as he is tempted by the dark side of the Force (even accepting lessons from the Emperor), and tears apart a room with Force powers as he rages over the death of his friend Roan (killed by Vader in the previous volume). It's also interesting that Vader is pushing forward with medical experiments to selectively erase memories as a way of forgetting his loss of Padme! The real action of the story heats up with the rescue of Lune (a Force-adept boy) that connects the Ferus and Trever storylines, which also involves an interesting defection by a teacher who doesn't want to work for the Empire. The end of the book finally has a glimpse of Obi-Wan (aging into Alec Guinness on Tatooine) who orders Ferus to check out a report involving a certain little girl on Alderaan! Sounds like a fantastic tie-in to me, and I'm ready to get into the next volume soon.