A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away....
A thrilling new adventure set between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back, and - for the first time ever - written entirely from Luke Skywalker's first-person point of view.
Luke Skywalker's game-changing destruction of the Death Star has made him not only a hero of the Rebel Alliance but a valuable asset in the ongoing battle against the Empire. Though he's a long way from mastering the power of the Force, there's no denying his phenomenal skills as a pilot - and in the eyes of Rebel leaders Princess Leia Organa and Admiral Ackbar, there's no one better qualified to carry out a daring rescue mission crucial to the Alliance cause.
A brilliant alien cryptographer renowned for her ability to breach even the most advanced communications systems is being detained by Imperial agents determined to exploit her exceptional talents for the Empire's purposes. But the prospective spy's sympathies lie with the Rebels, and she's willing to join their effort in exchange for being reunited with her family. It's an opportunity to gain a critical edge against the Empire that's too precious to pass up. It's also a job that demands the element of surprise. So Luke and the ever-resourceful droid R2-D2 swap their trusty X-wing fighter for a sleek space yacht piloted by brash recruit Nakari Kelen, daughter of a biotech mogul, who's got a score of her own to settle with the Empire.
Challenged by ruthless Imperial bodyguards, death-dealing enemy battleships, merciless bounty hunters, and monstrous brain-eating parasites, Luke plunges head-on into a high-stakes espionage operation that will push his abilities as a Rebel fighter and would-be Jedi to the limit. If ever he needed the wisdom of Obi-Wan Kenobi to shepherd him through danger, it's now. But Luke will have to rely on himself, his friends, and his own burgeoning relationship with the Force to survive.
©2015 Kevin Hearne (P)2004 Random House Audio
Much more grounded than the previous (now retconned) Star Wars EU. It feels like it belongs with the movies and not with the lame over the top cheesy old EU books, where force powers just got crazier and crazier almost like each author was trying to outdo the previous. The book itself is good even if a little slow and cumbersome, it does however carry a nice piece of character development for Luke Skywalker off though.
Author & Reviewer
Heir to the Jedi is a fun little adventure book with little to offer but for the fact it's Star Wars, and more importantly considered canon.
Taking place after A New Hope, the novel follows Luke Skywalker from a first person perspective as he carries out various missions for the rebel alliance, leading up to an attempted rescue of a Givin who is under Empire control.
Along for the ride are R2-D2 and a burgeoning love interest Nakari Kelen. With the occasional appearance from Leia, Ackbar, Han and even Ben. But the focus is on Luke, and as it's written from his perspective we a privy to his thoughts and feelings on the force and what happened after he destroyed the Death Star.
The action and story plots are well paced and entertaining. Not amazingly written, but works well enough for this kind of tie-in and what you would expect from a title like this. Beneath the childish humour and cheesy sound effects (see below) hide however a rather dark and graphic book that can go from heads exploding to stupid one-liners in a paragraph. Along with this are quite a few downbeat moments that distract from the overall happy go lucky tone throughout.
The voice acting is great and Marc Thompson sounds as close to Luke as you could want. There are however a lot of sound effects and background music - running ships, jungles, lightsabers, robots - which may put a few people off.
Fun for what it is, but nothing special.
I've read nearly all of EU books over the last 20 years. This is the first book where Luke Skywalker come off as a clumsy, whiny, insecure child. The book is clearly trying to cater to a young adult audience. With Luke worrying more about how to flirt and not get caught eyeing up his attractive college. If she is not about he spends his time trying to engage in learning how to use the force with noodles. The "action" events in the book come suddenly and are resolved even quicker, with no kind of tension, or consequences for mistakes. The supporting characters aren't that interesting and don't really carry the depth that similar characters from retconned Legends series have established in the last couple of decades.
I really hope this isn't the direction Disney and Del Rey are planning on taking the new supporting material.
I had major hate for references to modern concepts of political correctness and social situations that cause me to lose my immersion in the Star Wars universe. It's akin to doing a WW1 epic and having the character talk about Hard disk drive and the internet.
From the perspective of Luke, who is a farm boy in backwards desert planet that not long ago traded in slavery. He is use to hard work, dirt in the blistering heat. This maybe more of the performance than the book but he came across like he'd be worried he'd break a nail at times.
The action needed more work, again there was no tension in the scenes, everything was achieved as simply as it began. A lot of enjoyment I've had in other star wars novels are the characters finding themselves in impossibly complicated situations, then having to think on their feet to figure their way out of them. There was none of that in this novel, a blaster bolt here and there and it was over.
Nothing really against the performance, they were all good, just that I found none of the characters engaging enough to really like. Even Luke, who in previous novels engaged the most with.
It is likely inevitable there will be because of the franchise. My advice is Disney really needs to up there game with the supporting material. Instead of creating new uninteresting characters they should reinvent already loved characters from the EU/Legends.
If your a star wars fan then it is a must read purely to see what direction disney is taking the franchise now that most previous stories are no longer canon. The story itself was good even though was slightly predictable. However what made this for me was the Narrator. He did an outstanding performance each character had there own voice and personality also the emotion he portrayed in his voice made me care more than i probably would of if i'd of read the book. will be definitely checking out more novels he narrates. Overall not a bad start for the new star wars universe interested to see where they go next in the expanded universe.
The story was ok - not bad, not good, just about OK. It felt too much like a series of side quests and the sum of the parts didn't really add up to anything.
I hear great reviews about Marc Thompskn, and his overall delivery was good. But his Luke impersonation was not to my liking - he made him out to be too much of a grumpy teenager, whining constantly! It was a good attempt to be an "early" Luke but ultimately it didn't work for me.
It was all very.... Average.
Hmm... Maybe to be a little more sceptical of other audible reviews!
Seems a bit of a low key adventure after the Battle of Yavin. There are however decent aspects of Luke finding his place in the Alliance and the Force. Narration is good but the female human chatacters are done badly. The Nakari character is especially gratting and the performance detracts from a decently written character. Such a stupid posh english accent. Leia sounds weak too. Some other characters are really well done though, including Luke.
Get performance as ever but pretty weak story. Predictable quest narrative with little interesting interactions. Should of spent my time and credit listening to some real Sci Fi which isn't from a franchise willing to spin anything out for more money.
There was nothing wrong with the performance this story, or its production. But, with a title like heir to the jedi, I was expecting a lot more story, history and background to the Jedi and likes training to become a Jedi. Unfortunately, the story didn't deliver this and ultimately left me a little disappointed.
"A fun adventure, but not very deep"
It was an enjoyable journey, and I recommend it for any Star Wars fans. I guess I was just disappointed that nothing substantial happened. This didn't feel relevant to the new vs. old canon. It was more just "an adventure featuring Luke!" The story is also a little scattered. Overall I liked listening to this and sharing in Luke's successes and fears for the future.
"Adventurers with Daddy Issues"
If this novel were written outside of the Star Wars universe, I'd classify it as a simple, fun read. I have no problem with that because it captures the equally simple and fun tone of A New Hope, but without the level of epic that film introduced us to. All of the depth that's added to this story comes as a direct result of author Kevin Hearne delving into questions about Luke's character that Hearne has clearly pondered as a part of his own fandom.
This tale centers around a Luke Skywalker in transition. Immediately following the destruction of Death Star I, he is a hero to the Rebellion, but nowhere near competent with his abilities to tap the Force. He is perceived as more of an icon and less of a young man. Where this novel shines revolves around Luke's questions concerning his father, the Force, Darth Vader, and all of the unanswered questions that Obi-Wan left behind in the wake of the original film. Likewise, we can even see how the galaxy perceives the events of the Clone Wars, which Hearne uses to full effect. It's well done. The result is we see Luke at perhaps his most vulnerable, taking his next steps into the larger world of the Jedi Knight he'll become.
Luke is paired off with Katari Kelen, daughter of a biotech mogul who specializes in her own daddy issues and keeping us aware of just how young and inexperienced Luke really is at this point, illustrating just how much he would have to grow in the three years to The Empire Strikes Back.
I've read some of Hearne's other work, and his strengths and weaknesses are exactly the same here. He's excellent with characters and dialogue. His plots are uncomplicated and propel the story forward. But his world building is questionable at best. He creates some interesting and dangerous creatures, but in the little things he's far too Earthbound, taking me out of the Galaxy Far, Far Away. For example, the ever-ubiquitous coffee substitute "caf" from earlier Expanded Universe ("Legends") novels is all over the place here, and apparently buckwheat, noodles, salt, pepper, citrus, mint, "disposable eating sticks," and other such things from our own world can be found throughout the galaxy. I realize these are shortcuts to help make the Star Wars universe feel more real, but it brings down from epic to mundane by its very mention. Or I should say, it does for me. Maybe that won't bother others, but for me it's the little things that keep you in the story or yank you out of it. The good news is that when these things are brought up, Hearne uses these moments of down time to give us more character, which as I've said is his true strength as a storyteller.
Bottom line, it's not a great novel by comparison of the truly standout novels in the Star Wars line, but it's a fun one, and Hearne's character explorations of Luke make it a worthy addition to the new canon.
As narrator, I have to give top marks to Marc Thompson. As this story is told in 1st person, Thompson has to tell most of this book in Luke's voice rather than his own. Not only does he make the most of it, but he does a fantastic job bringing the other characters to life. This is to be expected, given that he's a Star Wars audiobook veteran, but credit where it's due.
I saw some other complaints about the book from other reviewers, and so I was hesitant at first to purchase the book. I was anxious, however, to read the new EU. I always love Marc Thompson and was pleasantly surprised by the story.
"Unimpressive first person story of an errand boy"
This is supposed to be one of the first books of the "New Canon" of Star Wars, so I was interested to see what it would have to offer. Honestly, it doesn't bode terribly well for the future.
I wasn't familiar with Kevin Hearne's work, but this effort doesn't leave me inclined to check out his other material.
The novel is set in between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back and follows a young Luke Skywalker dealing with life after destroying the first Death Star and being fully involved in the rebel alliance. The story is a first person narrative. IMHO, there's no such thing as a good first person narrative story, but some are less terrible than others. This one definitely doesn't rise to the top.
I agree with some other reviews that I came across that this feels like following a video game character through a limited scope RPG. The events come across as tedious as, being both a first person POV and being about Luke Skywalker, the predicaments that Luke finds himself in can't result in any meaningful harm to him.
While the title Heir to the Jedi is a good one, this is not the story to attach it to. While there is some bits of Luke trying to sort out what he's learned from Obi-Wan and what he needs to do to become a Jedi, the book is mostly a series of errands that Luke gets put on.
Ultimately, this book does little to add to our understanding of Luke as a character, nor does it do much to give us a better picture of the Star Wars universe.
"This is the worst Star Wars book ever written.."
I'm sorry to do this but I've got to say this book was terrible. I would give it one star if I could. I'll break this down simply:
(some spoilers but nothing about the plot)
-The "author" has a food fetish and finds any way possible to bring earthly items (such as cake, noodles, cream, sugar, cookies, ect) into this story. He literally described the shape of a spaceship as a "cookie with a big bite taken out of it"...enough said.
-He is obsessed with foul smelling things and goes into intense detail that is completely unnecessary.
-His "set up" for the next chapter and what's to come is so blatantly obvious it makes it nearly impossible to keep reading because you already know what's going to happen.
-This did not feel like Star Wars at all.. If you removed Luke and R2 from the narrative all you would be left with is a terribly weak sci-fi novel.
-Awkward moments galore.. Can't go into depth here but just trust me. I can only imagine the author is completely socially inept.
I could go on and on but I won't; just trust me, it's horrible.
I know this all seems harsh but I just expected more I guess, if this is the direction they are taking you can count me out- I'll stick to the old republic thank you. Darth bane, revan, and the thrawn trilogy books put this to absolute shame.
TLDR; PLEASE DONT WASTE YOUR CREDITS!
"Weepy, whiny, lovesick excuse for a Jedi"
Last. Totally due to the story, still love the narrator.
Yes, this is up to his normal standard, but having to do the whole thing in Luke's voice got old really quick. But not Marc's fault, blame the author.
2 hours of your life you'll never get back.
There's a new canon. I get it. But please give us new stuff better than this. I was very disappointed in this book. I've been reading the expanded universe for 20 years, which is now out the window, leaving a large void. I understand the need to fill that void with new information to both fill in gaps between movies and to lead us into the new movie. I hope future books do this better.
Luke - see subject line. Luke went from a nervous farmboy in A New Hope to a confident Jedi in Return of the Jedi. This book is apparently an attempt to show some of that journey. What we get is a stumbling, fumbling Luke who survives the activities of the book by a combination of dumb luck and a few force tricks that he stumbles onto, because Ben Kenobi is dead so he has to teach himself. Cue the violins. I say activities, because there is no real antagonist, just a series of vignettes with generic bad guys (spies, imperials, bounty hunters) as they attempt to complete a mission that I just couldn't care about, getting several people that were trying to help him killed in the process. And great, he figures out how to use the force to move a noodle. I'd be much more interested in how he got good enough with a lightsaber to survive the duel with Vader in Empire. I don't remember any saber training with Yoda while he was on Dagobah.
In another departure from the EU, they decided to use certain "Earth" words instead of established EU terms. For example, in this book you'll hear Luke talk about going to the "bathroom" instead of using the "refresher" and reading a piece of "paper" instead of "flimsy." These are changes that may seem like small details, but using the established EU vernacular would help bridge the Legends to the new canon.
I assume it's our modern facebook/twitter "I want to show everyone what I ate for breakfast, and my daily selfie" mentality that led to the choice to write this book in 1st person? Made me feel like I was listening to a whiny teenager reading me his diary. Just don't.
That said, I do not blame the narrator. Marc Thompson is awesome and should read every Star Wars novel until his voice gives out. But even a great narrator can only do so much with the material he is given.
SPOILER AHEAD ---
Yet another of Luke's loves meets a tragic end. I know, all the women he loved in the EU that died or left or turned to the dark side or merged with a spaceship or got killed by his nephew, etc... That never happened; That was Legend. OK. Do we have to continue that meme in the new canon? --- END SPOILER
I always finish books that I start, it's just how I am. But for the 2nd half of this book, I wished I could bring myself to just stop so I could go back to something worth listening to. I really don't see what part of this book could help me understand what will happen in the new movie, set more than 30 years later. New canon authors -- Please do better.
"I liked it!"
The ending was a little kitchy but otherwise it was fun. I liked the brain suckers too
This a fun entertaining story of Lukes early jedi experience. Really good narration too.I would recommend this title.
Great book, really enjoyed getting into Luke's head. I also like that Luke did get some tail after all! Miss Han and Chewy though always liked them
"Better than I expected"
I really liked the Givin, Drusil and hope for more Givin banter in the future. Marc Thompson brilliant as always.
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