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ALL TIMELINES


ALL TIMELINES

THE DESPERATE MISSION

A novel by Jude Watson (2005, Scholastic Paperbacks)
The Last of the Jedi, Book 1
19 years before and Star Wars: A New Hope

Obi-Wan leaves his exile to help a former Jedi, who is being hunted on a world being use by the Empire as an example of how Rebellion is to be squashed.

                                                                                     

 

 

Read June 15th to 26th, 2014, in softcover  
    This was probably the best Young Jedi novel since the Jedi Apprentice series. Obi-Wan had to make a lot of hard choices, there were no easy outs, and it gave a bit of closure to the events in both the Jedi Quest series, which ended before the Clone Wars, and also to Revenge of the Sith. The writing was very impressive, in showing this development, and in giving well-thought-out action scenes.

Full spoiler review:

I don't have any trouble believing in the person Obi-Wan has become at the beginning of this story -depressed, filling his life with empty routine, looking in on the infant Luke, and wondering why what Yoda taught him is not allowing him to speak with his former master's spirit. After all that happened in Revenge of the Sith, it has to be the hardest thing he has ever done.

So when he hears the name FerussOlin in a cantina inOlin in a cantina in Mos Eisley, he is very torn. Qui-, he is very torn. Qui-Gon'ssspirit takes that moment to speak with him, words of wisdom claiming thatspirit takes that moment to speak with him, words of wisdom claiming that Ferusscould be the one to start an organized rebellion, something for Luke and Leia to join when they are old enough. He does some quick soul-searching, and decides he has to go rescuecould be the one to start an organized rebellion, something for Luke and Leia to join when they are old enough. He does some quick soul-searching, and decides he has to go rescue Ferus..

Ferusswas already opposing the Empire on the planet ofwas already opposing the Empire on the planet of Bellass, where he had started a business after leaving the Jedi. I do have trouble believing he didn't keep up his training, or at least casual use of the Force. I can understand that it might remind him too much of the life he left behind, but the Force is a part of him, and I think it would be hard to suppress., where he had started a business after leaving the Jedi. I do have trouble believing he didn't keep up his training, or at least casual use of the Force. I can understand that it might remind him too much of the life he left behind, but the Force is a part of him, and I think it would be hard to suppress., where he had started a business after leaving the Jedi. I do have trouble believing he didn't keep up his training, or at least casual use of the Force. I can understand that it might remind him too much of the life he left behind, but the Force is a part of him, and I think it would be hard to suppress.

When Obi-Wan arrives, Ferussis in hiding, and his partner is in the hospital, having been poisoned and tortured by the Imperial forces occupying the planet, and Inquisitoris in hiding, and his partner is in the hospital, having been poisoned and tortured by the Imperial forces occupying the planet, and Inquisitor Maloru,,who is Force-sensitive and working for Vader., leads the inquest.Obi-Wan can see how scared the people are, and the different reactions of different people. TTrevor is a teen thief, who profits well by the black market, and obviously knew Ferus, but won't talk about him. The restaurant owner won't talk to anybody, for fear that the, but won't talk about him. The restaurant owner won't talk to anybody, for fear that the stormtroopersswill come and ask questions, or worse, take her away without any questions at all.will come and ask questions, or worse, take her away without any questions at all.

But there is a Group of Eleven, which was started by Ferussand Roan. The doctor treating Roan is obviously sympathetic to the resistance. Whenand Roan. The doctor treating Roan is obviously sympathetic to the resistance. When Malorumhreatens her son, she decides she can't be neutral anymore, and joins the Eleven, taking Obi-Wan with her, and stealing Roan also.threatens her son, she decides she can't be neutral anymore, and joins the Eleven, taking Obi-Wan with her, and stealing Roan also.

Obi-Wan sneaks into the Imperial barracks with a keycard he found in some stolen officer's uniform in order to see what drugs Roan was given, so the doctor can save him. He then tells Obi-Wan where Ferussis hiding, in the house of one of their first clients, up in the mountains.is hiding, in the house of one of their first clients, up in the mountains.

But as Obi-Wan takes a starship to cover the distance quickly and avoid notice (though this doesn't really make sense), he is followed by a Firespra, and of course we all know that there is only one true, and of course we all know that there is only one true, and of course we all know that there is only one true Firesprayn any of the Star Wars movies or books (though others have popped up now and again) -it belongs toin any of the Star Wars movies or books (though others have popped up now and again) -it belongs to Boba Fett, though it takes Obi-Wan time to figure that out. The space chase and landing in the snow was particularly well written, with a few exciting twists that impressed me. Typically this author, at least in recent books, has taken the typical fades and slingshot maneuvers, all predictable, and nothing that Fett would fall for. But here, she doesn't, and everything comes about feeling quite natural.

The reunion between Obi-Wan and Ferussis bittersweet, though both are glad to see the other. It was awkward and emotional at the same time. Again, this was well-written. I was also impressed with the way Obi-Wan keeps thinking about Anakin, especially after being reminded ofis bittersweet, though both are glad to see the other. It was awkward and emotional at the same time. Again, this was well-written. I was also impressed with the way Obi-Wan keeps thinking about Anakin, especially after being reminded of Ferus' last days.' last days. Ferus won't tell him what happened to make him quit the Jedi O in The Final ShowdownI'm super-impressed that Obi-Wan keeps his mouth shut about Anakin, simply saying that he died, and probably formulating for the first time the argument that he told Luke in A New Hope,eand explained in more detail in Return of the Jedi.i.

Fett isn't stupid, and he finds their location quickly enough. The owner has an escape tunnel that leads into old mines, through which they are chases, and during which time Ferussis reacquainted with the Force, letting it flow through him, and allowing him to regain control.is reacquainted with the Force, letting it flow through him, and allowing him to regain control. Fett and his partner catch up with them after they traverse a large lake, but they manage to escape in time.

Ferussthen offers himself up tothen offers himself up to Malorumn exchange for the people of the city, who have been rounded up and sentenced to execution.in exchange for the people of the city, who have been rounded up and sentenced to execution. Ferussis naive enough to think that they will be set free, but Obi-Wan warns him that the Empire is not like anything they have faced before. It is ready to kill millions of people to catch one, especially if that one is a Jedi. So Obi-Wan and the Eleven make preparations, dressing as many citizens as possible in stolen imperial uniforms, in order to sow confusion, hoping the Empire would not fire on its own officers, even accidentally. The plan works, except thatis naive enough to think that they will be set free, but Obi-Wan warns him that the Empire is not like anything they have faced before. It is ready to kill millions of people to catch one, especially if that one is a Jedi. So Obi-Wan and the Eleven make preparations, dressing as many citizens as possible in stolen imperial uniforms, in order to sow confusion, hoping the Empire would not fire on its own officers, even accidentally. The plan works, except that Malorumathersgathers Ferussinto the barracks before Obi-Wan can get to him.into the barracks before Obi-Wan can get to him.

Once again, Obi-Wan infiltrates the barracks, and he and Ferussescape, once again in a thoughtful and well-executed story. The only part that became predictable was when TTreveronned the troopers into opening the door by usingng Malorum's laundered cloak as bait. But with the fear those higher up in the command structure of the Empire enforce, it's probably realistic that the guy would open the door a sliver to try and get it.

They manage to get off the planet, but Ferus knows his life will never be the same again. The book ends unnecessarily in a cliff-hanger, as they land at a new spaceport in a remote area of the outer rim (with Trever as a stowaway), and find Boba Fett waiting for them. Obi-Wan also worries about a lead that Malorum is following up on Pollis Massa, the asteroid where Padme gave birth to Luke and Leia, though I think that is a lead for a later book.

Both Obi-Wan and Ferussare adults at this point, thoughare adults at this point, though Ferussis probably about twenty or twenty-five years old. I was wondering how the author would make the connection to the young readers these books are supposed to appeal to. This is done through Trever, who will apparently be following Obi-Wan and Ferus around for a while. In this book, he feels guilty because he was the one who sold the data bank containing the list of Ferus and Roan's old contacts to another teenaged boy, who ended up being Boba Fett. I was not impressed with the Jedi Quest novels, so I was a little reluctant to pick up this series, thinking the author had used up all the good ideas. But this series begins on a very high note, and I hope she can keep it up.
 
   

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