Star Wars: The Force Unleashed by Sean Williams
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Having just read another video game tie-in, it was kind of obnoxious that the timeline moved me into these novels next. What is more, although that game was fun the storyline of the game was weak. (view spoiler)[The main character, Starkiller [a nice nod to Lucas's original name for Luke], goes to several planets for different missions and then ends up travelling to each of those planets again. In between his planetary travels he battles Sith ghosts or mirages or something in the destroyed Jedi temple on Coruscant to continue his training and increase his skills. In the game this makes little sense, other than because reusing an environment allows the programmers to have to do less work overall and can focus on other game-play aspects. However, because of the repeat visits to planets it makes the Universe seem small. The book feels even more formulaic as it tries to follow the video game storyline. Little new information or detail is added to the book, that isn't seen in the game already. The love-interest between Starkiller and Juno is painfully obvious to everyone except them, which makes it feel like a joke with no punchline. The only saving grace of the book is that it doesn't feature the Sith battles and multiple visits to and fights in the Jedi temple. Another small advantage of the book is that it allows us to see the motivations of some of the supporting characters like Proxy, Juno, Rahm Kota, and Bail Organa (hide spoiler)].
Having said all of that, I don't blame the book or Sean Williams for having poor source material to draw from and given what he had to work with the novel wasn't all that bad. It was also nice to finally get a resolution to what happened to Shaak Ti after George Lucas dropped both of his ideas for killing her in Episode III. If you are at all into video games, I recommend that game over the novel because they tell the same story, which ins't as true of the sequel.
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