Zahn (Judgment at Proteus, 2012, etc.) returns once again to the Star Wars universe with a heist tale featuring classic characters from the original film series.
The author—who has many sci-fi works to his credit, including the recent Quadrail space-opera series—is best known for his several well-regarded novels in the Star Wars expanded universe, from his best-selling 1990s Thrawn trilogy to 2011’s Star Wars: Choices of One. This time out, his novel is set between the films Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back and includes fan favorites Han Solo, Chewbacca and Lando Calrissian. Solo is approached by a disfigured human, Eanjer, who tells him that 163 million credits were stolen from him by gangsters, and he wants Solo to get them back. In return, he offers to split the recovered credits with Solo and whomever he gets to help him. With Jabba the Hutt’s bounty still on his head, it’s too good a potential payday for Solo to turn down. So he and Chewbacca round up some friends and associates, including tech whiz Rachele Ree, twin thieves Bink and Tavia, and charming con man Calrissian, among others, for a mission to get the credits from the crime boss Villachor’s massive estate. Soon, the plan becomes more complicated and dangerous, involving the powerful Black Sun crime syndicate and secret blackmail files. For readers familiar with the original film trilogy—and few sci-fi fans aren’t—this installment will be fairly easy to follow, as it doesn’t require in-depth knowledge of the complex Star Wars expanded universe. Although there are some nods to the trilogy that longtime fans will appreciate—including a late-breaking reveal involving a popular character—casual fans will also enjoy this well-constructed story.
A crisply told Star Wars adventure.