Book Thoughts: Ahsoka [mild spoilers]

EK Johnston’s novel Ahsoka gives us a glimpse of Ahsoka’s journey after Order 66.

Synopsys (no spoilers)

Lost and hiding, Ahsoka runs from one place to the next hoping to avoid forming relationships and exhibiting her Jedi traits.  However, on a new home world the Empire emerges to impose its power on the local population.  She tries to run away and make a new life for herself.  She even finds herself foiling the crooked activities of local gangsters.  She can’t help it.  But she also manages to not expose herself in the process. In the end, she must choose to continue to run or to embrace her powers and go and help her new friends fight the Empire.  In the end she chooses to fight and support her new found friends.

 

Some Thoughts

This is an incredibly personal story for Ahsoka and we get to learn a lot about her personally.  She struggles with the new relationships she forms.  While she doesn’t want to put anyone in danger, she also has a way of getting people to love her.  She also struggles with her own identity.  She left the Jedi Order, but hasn’t abandoned their teachings.  It is how she views the world and is her source of strength.  So where does she look to for strength if she cannot embrace her Jedi teachings?

We get to experience some great moments in this book.  We see how Ahsoka manages to hide herself after Order 66 (reminiscent of Kanan in A New Dawn).  We hear a bit about the Seige of Mandalor, the Capture of Darth Maul, and what happened with Rex.   We see how she handles discovering a Force-sensitive child and isn’t sure what to do about it. What’s most interesting portion is the description of she’s handling the loss of the Jedi Order and her friends.  She has no idea if anyone is alive and doesn’t know what to make of what that all means for her.

This book, I think, illustrates how author’s can create a small story with the scale and significance that is requisite of a good Star Wars story.  My issues with Lords of the Sith and Aftermath were that these stories had little overall impact within the Star Wars saga.  In LoTS, there’s never any articulation as to Ryloth’s strategic importance to defeating the Empire (though the book is still great).  Ryloth was before and was after fully subjugated by The Empire.  The events in  Aftermath have very little impact on the subsequent events in Aftermath: Life Debt or even The Force Awakens.  We don’t learn very much about the new characters nor do we really learn much about the remnants of The Empire or their plans (Life Debt handles that quite well).

Ahsoka doesn’t fall prey to these shortcomings.  Though this is a rather small story focusing on a few non-strategic backwater worlds, Ahsoka’s experiences attract the attention of very significant powers in the Empire.  This story has significant relevance to subsequent stories such as Star Wars Rebels and even Episode 4.

This is a great book for fans of Ahsoka Tano, The Clone Wars, and Rebels.  In fact, if there’s any shortcoming to this book is that it feels more like the pilot of a series about Ahsoka.  I wouldn’t mind an Ahsoka miniseries detailing this time in her history (the big drawback is that I don’t think we should keep making prequels; let’s try telling Star Wars stories forward in time, not backward).   It would be a great premise to experiment with a 10 episode Netflix series.  But I’m not sure it’s the best story that could be told (overall).  It is, however, a great story about an incredibly important character.

Some of the best parts (not details though):

  • Ahsoka’s pseudonym
  • The story behind Ahsoka’s white light sabers
  • Bail Organa’s operation

 


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