Star Wars

Star Wars
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Monday, August 5, 2013

Back on track with BHambly!

Callista Ming nee. Malasa
As I, Esme, mentioned previously, I had serious reservations about "Children of the Jedi" when I was a kid - reservations which, I hoped, to put aside during my rereading. Ro and I are about halfway through the book (okay, I admit, I'm actually about three-quarters of the way now) and I don't think either of us could have anticipated our reactions.

Which is that it is AWESOME!

One of the great things about this novel is how it truly unfolds. There's real mystery and real sense of each character traveling all over the place and collecting evidence of what's unfolding around them. I like that Han, Leia, and Luke all seem to have their own arch in "Children," their own journey. They begin in one place and end up running all over the place, pushing themselves to their physical and emotional limits in true odyssey fashion.

I also appreciate that, in allowing each of our favorite trio to undertake their own journey, BHambly also fully immerses herself in each of their points of view in a very convincing way. I get a true sense of Leia as a struggling mother, a trainee Jedi frustrated by the limits of her power, a Chief of State burdened by the duty she feel compelled to undertake. Han's character once again feels like he's towing a fine line between the respectable and the roguish as he undergoes his journey and looks into his past as he encounters his old friend, Drub McKumb, and talks to Mara Jade, who moves (as a smuggler) in similar circles. And I've never been so physically exhausted reading about Jedi! Wowza - just when Luke can't damage himself any further, his already-broken leg is set on fire! I exaggerate but the extent to which he undergoes physical and emotional suffering in this book is pretty astounding - and very compelling.

The Eye of Palpatine
There's a whole lot to say on the subject of Callista as well and how differently I feel about her now than I did when I was a kid. I'll save that for the final "Children" post.

I'm feeling back on track with this project in a way I haven't felt since we first ventured in TZahn's trilogy. Not only am I reading a raging, insatiable pace, but I'm also excited about our project again. Who knew the book I was dreading reading would be the one I'd get most involved in. This has been, so far, my favorite outside of TZahn's series. So weird.

Ro here. I never had any reservations about "Children," whether as a child or an adult. I love Mara Jade, sure, but I never worshiped her the way Es did and does. So I was sort of ambivalent about Callista. I was happy when Luke and Mara got married, but as many of us know, one has to have a first love and it's rare when that first love becomes the ONLY love.

Anyway, I am also enjoying the HECK out of "Children!" I was a bit confused and put off by not knowing who Nicos and Cray were at first, but after a chapter or two, I was able to look past my confusion and fall into the story. Es is right. This book is SO GOOD. I absolutely love BHambly's world building ability. I'm actually understanding and seeing landscapes and aliens. Not just rough ideas of them either, but full blown details. It doesn't feel heavy with details, but perfectly balanced with narrative and character building. I'm still around the halfway mark, so that's kind of what I've got to add right now. I'm sure I'll have more once I've finished. I can't wait to get back to my book and it's nearly a physical effort to pull myself out of it!!

1 comment:

  1. One of my favorite things about BHambly's world-building is how the galaxy gets bigger and bigger and bigger with each passing chapter. This isn't one planet or even one sector but a whole section of the galaxy, which is the size and scale Star Wars is supposed to have! BHambly is really good at using characters and worlds featured in other SW EU novels as well, which is smart because even as she's expanding her own worlds and systems, she's connecting them with pre-existing ones, which I always found exciting because it made the EU feel like one united and interconnected EU, not a bunch of authors' different versions of the same EU rebuilt each time.