The Force is still to be reckoned with, primarily because Darth Vader continues to be one of the most fascinating dark pop icons since Dracula. Picking up where Matthew Stover's Revenge of the Sith (2005) left off, Luceno (Labyrinth of Evil) delivers exciting battle scenes and brave characters, including the beloved Wookie, Chewbacca. His ease with Star Wars techno-jargon is admirable. What's needed in this intermittently entertaining installment is a better opponent for Vader. Unfortunately, Yoda, the spiritual heart of the saga, appears to be in hiding. Instead, Luceno focuses on Jedi knight Roan Shryne; his Padawan sidekick, Olee Starstone; and other survivors of Emperor Palpatine's Jedi extermination. All appear to be earnest, if pale, imitations of Obi-Wan Kenobi. And where's Han Solo, far older than the Skywalker twins? Why can't Vader sense his twins' existence with his vaunted supernatural abilities? Too often the sympathetic Vader wallows in self-pity. Thankfully, exuberantly evil Palpatine (aka Darth Sidious) returns with more power lessons Vader laps up eagerly: ""Where the Jedi gained power through understanding, the Sith gain understanding through power.""
Reviewed on: 10/31/2005 Release date: 11/01/2005 Genre: Fiction
Mass Market Paperbound - 338 pages - 978-0-345-47733-0