Monday, May 22, 2017

Book Review: 'Star Wars: Rebel Rising' by Beth Revis

Another decent addition to the new canon of Star Wars novels.

Here, we get to find out more of Jyn's back story, as the book fills in the blanks between the 'Catalyst' book and the prologue in 'Rogue One', to the moment she's sprung from the Wobani prison camp and then taken to Yavin 4.

Hinted at in 'Rogue One', we also find out how extremist Saw Gerrera's tactics became, and how he grew paranoid of others in his company. The interaction of Jyn and Saw is very much like family - felt sort of like uncle and niece rather than father and daughter to me - as she gradually got more involved Saw's crews and the missions, and more as a code forger than a soldier, which was slightly different from the film, but I enjoyed this section of the book.

It's a bit grim and dark at times, as after events that become a shatterpoint in Jyn's life, turning it upside down, Jyn just seems to lose hope and a bit of her humanity, as she doesn't care either way about the Empire or the fledgling Rebellion, hating either with equal venom, just content with looking out for herself. After what she's had to go through in her life, it's no wonder she's become jaded at what's going on in the galaxy!

But it's not all darkness and pain for Jyn, as there's a bit of a restbite from her troubles and even time for a romance. It's good to see her happy and a bit of hope be rekindled for her as a result, but nothing lasts forever, and her past soon catches up with her and she soon slips back into her old uncaring ways once more.

The book is also interspersed with moments from her six months incarcerated at the Wobani prison planet before her rescue, highlighting how grim and desperate life has become to her and those who go up against the Empire.

I would recommend reading 'Catalyst' first, as a few events in that book are mentioned, albeit mostly in passing, from a different point of view, connecting the stories together. Could easily have 'Catalyst', 'Rebel Rising' and 'Rogue One' all bundled into one complete volume.

I enjoyed this decent, but short read. It was great that it filled in some of the blanks in Jyn Erso's life, showing us events that shaped how she became the woman she is in the film. Will make watching 'Rogue One' a different experience.

If you liked her character from 'Rogue One', this book is definitely recommended for you.

****/5