Book Review: Kenobi: Star Wars by John Jackson Miller (Four Stars)

Book Review: Kenobi: Star Wars by John Jackson Miller

Four Stars out of Five

Possibly the best Star Wars EU (expanded universe) novel I’ve read, and while I haven’t kept track it’s been dozens. Miller accomplishes the singular feat of writing a good, self-contained story which has all the expected ties to both the official Star Wars canon (the films) and the EU (dozens of books, graphics novels, games, etc.).

Miller admits that he originally conceived this story as a “western” in graphic novel format. It clearly exceed the bounds of that genre—not that there’s anything wrong with graphic novels. (Interestingly, Wikipedia‘s Obi-Wan Kenobi entry does not list this book.)

Two minor quibbles: First, the twin suns of Tatooine are presented as following each other in the same order. Binary stars orbit a common center. If Tatoo I and II were relatively close together (so that the planet could orbit the common center also), they would change position–rapidly, like Io around Jupiter. If the stars were far enough apart for Tatooine to orbit only one, the two stars would fail to present the iconic double sunsets. Second, Miller kept telling us how hot it was, but I never felt it. During too much time spent in Southwest Asia, I’ve felt the hot, arid air sucking me dry. It’s beyond uncomfortable; it’s dangerous.

Why not five stars? Obi-Wan’s “mediations” almost ruin the story. They are out of character; in fact sounding more like a fat suburban whining to his shrink than a Jedi Master musing on the ineffables of the universe. They come off as a plot narration expedient.

Still, a fun read. Popcorn for the brain. Good job.

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