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PARAGON

An e-book novella by John Jackson Miller (2010, Del Rey)
Lost Tribe of the Sith, Book 3
Set 5000 years before Star Wars: A New Hope

Fifteen years after the crash, the Sith are still trying to escape, when a native city falls victim to a plague.

 

 

Read April 17th to 19th, 2010.  
    It's really hard to get a good sense of this series of books. When it is complete, I will certainly need to reread it as chapters in a single book, not a bunch of short books like Precipice and Skyborn and this one. I think it will be more than it seems right now.

When Omen crashed on Kesh, it had a variety of species on board, including Massassi, native Red Sith, and humans. The Massassi died within hours of being exposed to Kesh. Fifteen years later, there are fifty seven Sith left, and a bunch of human Sith, ruled by Korsin -and his brother's widow Seelah.

The story takes place from Seelah's point of view, as she washes and is served by her Keshiri slave Tilden, then goes to the main hall, where Korsin seems to sit like a king, listening to various pleas at his leisure. Many of his people, Gloyd and the Red Sith Ravilan, have devised various ways to get off the planet, but to no avail. Gloyd advocates using the rest of their battery power, which is almost used up. Ravilan is more crafty. He is sent out to various population centers, but within a day, one of the towns is utterly destroyed, and Ravilan is the only one alive.

This disturbs the Sith greatly, as there appears to be a toxin that can kill even humans here. While Korsin took walks at the beginning of this story with Adari Vaal, all the Keshiri are now banned from the Sith fortress.

When Seelah discovers symptoms she recognizes in the one human who died in the village, she goes back to the fortress to investigate. I didn't see her treachery coming, and it was brilliant in its execution. Seelah has been the chief of the nursery for all these years, killing all who don't seem powerful or full-blood human enough. She has not allowed any of the Red Sith babies to live.

She exposes Ravilan's plan to Korsin as other towns are wiped out in the area that the various Red Sith visited days ago. When exposed, it is obvious that Ravilan was desperate to bring all the Sith together and reduce their dependence on the Keshiri, and concentrate on getting off the planet rather than settling down.

Seelah has, however, secretly taken the plan one step further: she seeded the poison into the other towns, so that Korsin would hunt down and kill all the Red Sith. She exposes her plan to Ravilan (and the readers) just before her teenaged son kills him.

In the denouement of the book, a resistance movement including Adari and Tilden is revealed. Given the nature of the series and the Fate of the Jedi, I'm guessing that it fails, but maybe it ends up striking a balance.

Once again the characters, in this case Seelah, are very well developed, and the story is tightly woven, especially given its brevity. When they entered into this alliance, Korsin and Seelah didn't trust each other, but over fifteen years, Korsin has grown soft, but Seelah hasn't. She's biding her time until she eventually takes over the new tribe. In effect, she already has, exercising power over the young. When the time comes, I have no doubt she will prevail over Korsin, unless the Keshiri overwhelm her. They must know she is infinitely worse than Korsin as a leader.

 
   

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