Dark Lord: The Rise of Darth Vader
Author: James Luceno
Release Date: November 2005
- NOTE: The following contains SPOILERS!
The cover says that this is “The Must Read Sequel To Star Wars: Revenge Of The Sith” After reading it, I have to agree. In fact, I’ve read it a few times. This novel had several points of interest, but it didn’t seem cluttered to me. Most prominent, I think, are the struggles that Vader faced immediately after the events of ROTS. Struggles, not only with his physical disabilities and how to adjust to the suit, but the inner struggles as well. Dealing with the loss of Padme, the “death” of Anakin, his new allegiance to Palpatine and the Sith, and adjusting to the power and control that has been laid at his feet. I thought Luceno did a great job communicating those things to the reader.
Also worthy of mention is the fact that some clones actually disobeyed Order 66, and provided a way out for the Jedi they served with. The novel stops short, though, and doesn’t show what the punishment was for disobedience. We all know it had to have meant death, but I would have liked to see an exchange between the clones and Palpatine, if they were indeed brought before him.
The Jedi who were spared learned the ‘whys and hows’ about what transpired on Coruscant that brought on the Jedi executions, little by little. Information trickled in, instead of a quick reveal. I liked this. I felt that Dark Lord took on the role as mystery novel, among it’s other roles.
The 2nd battle of Kashyyyk was riveting from start to finish. This was an important event to read about, because so many plots from other novels pick up where this leaves off. We also learn more about Tarkin, and his new relationship with Vader. Not to be forgotten are the Jedi who lost their lives to Vader in order to save others; perhaps the first Jedi to die at the hands of a suited Vader.
Finally: Obi-Wan. He learns that Vader is alive from watching a Holonet report on Tatooine. Talk about a jaw-dropper, for him. I felt that this too was important to read about. And of course I enjoyed his conversation with Qui-Gon.
There are a few errors in Dark Lord, but I can overlook them. Other than that, I felt this was a brilliant novel. A must read.
Dark Lord: The Rise of Darth Vader receives a 4 out of 5.
- Master Optician