The Young Jedi Knights books draw to a close with one final trilogy that takes Jaina, Jacen, Tenel Ka, Lowbacca, and Zekk on a whole new adventure which, as we all know, means trouble.
Return to Ord Mantell
I’d forgotten that I dislike Anja Gallandro. It’s not that I hate her or have some vendetta against her. I just don’t like her and I’m okay with her not having appeared in the Expanded Universe otherwise. On the other hand, I suppose these books can serve as another chapter in the ‘Don’t do spice, kids,’ grand story.
It’s always fun getting to see the twins get some serious page time with Han. This book gets double fun points before it’s diving into Han’s smuggler past. Watching Jaina fly the Falcon with her father never fails to make me smile.
Zekk’s journey towards becoming a proper Jedi Knight gets its start here. The more I think about it, the more I appreciate that this plotline wasn’t rushed. I also appreciate that he decided to combine his piloting skills with his Force abilities to win the Derby.
Oh. And we get cameos from Kyp Durron and Streen which is always lovely. I can’t help how much I love that jerk of a Jedi. (Kyp not Streen.)
Trouble on Cloud City
Ugh, Anja. According to Wookieepedia, you are 11 years older than Jacen and 9 years older than Zekk. Please stop flirting with them. They are teenagers and it is creepy.
Lando’s taking the kids on a working vacation to his new entertainment/amusement center on Cloud City so they can be his test subjects. As we all know by now, this ends badly. Are there any bigger trouble magnets in the galaxy than Lando and the Solo twins?
This book actually turned out to be a fun action packed read. While it’s one storyline, the kids end up getting split into two different teams to investigate different leads. Jacen almost dies in the process but thankfully doesn’t. Seriously though: who thought that Cloud City was a good idea? That just screams ‘safety hazard’ to me.
Crisis at Crystal Reef
Aha! I was right! Zekk does build his very own lightsaber and it has an orange blade.
Half the book takes place on Calamari and the other half on Kessel. In a book with a spice addict, Kessel was only a matter of time. It’s nice that Nien Nunb is still running the place although I hardly think it counts as a vacation spot. It’s inevitable that things go bad ant that Czethros and Black Sun make a move to take over the mines. Again, it was only a matter of time. Good thing Jaina and Lowbacca are there to save the day.
Jacen, Tenel Ka, and Zekk definitely get the much nice assignment. Tracking down Anja at the Crystal Reef resort and almost getting eaten by a giant sea creature is definitely nicer. Sure they almost died too but it could’ve been worse!
Unfortunately, that’s the end of the Young Jedi Knights books and also the end of the happy fun times. Things are going to be tragic soon. EVERYONE IS GOING TO DIE AND NO ONE WILL BE HAPPY EVER AGAIN.
Originally posted to Tosche Station on March 22, 2013