I’ve always been intruiged by the Star Wars extended universe, and intended to read it some day. Looks like I started in the right place. Heir To The Empire takes up the premise of continuing the Star Wars sage after the movies. What happened next?
Timothy Zahn picks up the familiar beloved characters and gets under their skin very well. Their voices and actions ring true. We get to see Han’s adjustment to serving the new republic, Leia not only expecting twins but taking the first tentative steps toward exploring her Jedi abilities, and Luke struggling to come to terms with the fact that his mentors are gone forever. If there are to be any more Jedi – it’s all up to him.
Bringing back our heroes is only part of the picture. A new villain was required for this story, following the deaths of The Emperor and Darth Vader. Zahn does a masterful job of creating Grand Admiral Thrawn – certainly a formidable and worthy bad guy. He is very compelling and capable.
The other interesting character that was introduced in this book is Mara Jade. I’m looking forward to seeing the continued development of this arc.
I listened to the audio book, and was very impressed with the narration. Mark Thompson did a fantastic job at the character voices. I really believed I was listening to Luke , Leia and Han. He gave the new characters their own strong unique voices as well. The book features music and sound effects.. Normally these would not be necessary in an audio book, but given it was Star Wars it was not only appropriate but welcome.
It is ironic that I finally get around to starting on these books after they have been demoted from Canon, but Heir to the Empire is still very much worth the read.