This is a reading list for those who need a little Star Wars fix leading up to seeing the The Force Awakens, or after having seen it. This is not an exhaustive list that includes, in no particular order, books from both Canon (books published after April 2014) and Legends (books from the original Star Wars Expanded Universe). My only criteria for which one’s I’ve selected is a) I like them, or b) I think they look cool.
Clone Commando Series
by Karen Traviss
- Hard Contact On a mission to sabotage a nanovirus research facility on a Separatist-held planet, four clone troopers operate under the very noses of their enemies. The commandos are outnumbered and outgunned, deep behind enemy lines with no backup—and working with strangers instead of trusted teammates.
- Triple Zero We can get this one through interlibrary loan. Call or ask at the main desk. For Omega Squad, deployed deep behind enemy lines, it’s the same old special ops grind: sabotage, espionage, ambush, and assassination. But when Omega Squad is rushed to Coruscant, the war’s most dangerous new hotspot, the commandos discover they’re not the only ones penetrating the heart of the enemy.
- True Colors In the Grand Army’s desperate fight to crush the Separatists, the secret special ops missions of its elite clone warriors have never been more critical…or more dangerous. A growing menace threatens Republic victory, and the members of Omega Squad make a shocking discovery that shakes their loyalty.
- Order 66 Even as the Clone Wars are about to reach an explosive climax, no one knows if victory will favor the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) or the Separatists. But no matter who wins, the stakes are highest for elite Special Ops clones like the Republic Commandos in Omega and Delta squads—and the notorious renegade Advance Recon Commando troopers known as Null ARCs.
- 501st The Clone Wars are over, but for those with reason to run from the new galactic Empire, the battle to survive has only just begun….The Jedi have been decimated in the Great Purge, and the Republic has fallen. Now the former Republic Commandos — the galaxy’s finest special forces troops, cloned from Jango Fett — find themselves on opposing sides and in very different armor. Some have deserted and fled to Mandalore with the mercenaries, renegade clone troopers, and rogue Jedi who make up Kal Skirata’s ragtag resistance to Imperial occupation. Others — including men from Delta and Omega squads — now serve as Imperial Commandos, a black ops unit within Vader’s own 501st Legion, tasked to hunt down fugitive Jedi and clone deserters.
Clone Wars Series
by Matthew Stover, Steven Barnes, Michael Reaves, Steve Perry, David Sherman, Dan Cragg and Sean Stewart
- Shatterpoint The jungle planet of Haruun Kal, the homeworld Mace barely remembers, has become a battleground in the increasing hostilities between the Republic and the renegade Separatist movement. The Jedi Council has sent Depa Billaba—Mace’s former Padawan and fellow Council member—to Haruun Kal to train the local tribesmen as a guerilla resistance force, to fight against the Separatists who control the planet and its strategic star system with their droid armies. But now the Separatists have pulled back, and Depa has not returned. The only clue to her disappearance is a cryptic recording left at the scene of a brutal massacre: a recording that hints of madness and murder, and the darkness in the jungle…a recording in Depa’s own voice. Mace Windu trained her. Only he can find her. Only he can learn what has changed her. Only he can stop her.
- The Cestus Deception Ord Cestus, a planet mostly barren and inhospitable to life, was first colonized as a prison world—until a handful of hardy pioneers discovered its rich ore deposits and managed to build up a successful droid-manufacturing industry. But when the Clone Wars erupted, bringing severe rationing of imported resources and a Republic ban on the production of battle droids, Ord Cestus was threatened with imminent economic collapse.
- MedStar I: Battle Surgeons We can get this one through interlibrary loan. Call or ask at the main desk.
A surgeon who covers his despair with wisecracks; another who faces death and misery head-on, venting his emotions through beautiful music … A nurse with her heart in her work and her eye on a doctor … A Jedi Padawan on a healing mission without her Master … These are the core members of a tiny med unit serving the jungle world of Drongar, where battle is waged over the control of a priceless native plant, and an endless line of medlifters brings in the wounded and dying—mostly clone troopers, but also soldiers of all species.
- MedStar II: Jedi Healer We can get this one through interlibrary loan. Call or ask at the main desk. The threatened enemy offensive begins as the Separatists employ legions of droids in their attack. Even with reinforcements, the flesh and blood of the Republic forces are just no match for battle droids’ durasteel. Nowhere is this point more painfully clear than in the steaming Jasserak jungle, where the doctors and nurses of a small med unit face an impossible situation. As the dead and wounded start to pile up, surgeons Jos Vondar and Kornell “Uli” Divini know that time is running out.
- Jedi Trial Commanding a Separatist invasion force more than one million strong, Pors Tonith, the cunning financier-turned-warrior lays siege to the planet Praesitlyn, home of the strategic intergalactic communications center that is key to the Republic’s survival in the Clone Wars. Left unchallenged, this decisive strike could indeed pave the way for the toppling of more Republic worlds…and ultimate victory for the Separatists. Retaliation must be swift and certain.
The Last Jedi Series
by Jude Watson
- The Desperate Mission After Obi-Wan is betrayed by Anakin, Obi-Wan raises Luke Skywalker on the remote planet of Tatooine. Later, Obi-Wan discovers that at least one Jedi has survived the destruction of the Jedi Order by the Empire. Obi-Wan must make a difficult choice between staying on Tatooine with Luke or going to the heart of the Empire to find the Jedi.
- Dark Warning As Obi-Wan Kenobi flees from Boba Fett and tries to keep his most important secret safe from the Empire, he discovers that one of the last Jedi is hiding in the Caves of Ilum.
- Underworld Ferus Olin, a former Jedi apprentice, journeys through the underworld of the planet Coruscant in order to rescue a Jedi who is imprisoned in the Jedi Temple by the Empire.
- Death on NabooFerus Olin struggles to keep a secret which protects the Jedi from the Empire.
- A Tangled Web Emperor Palpatine wants to incorporate Ferus Olin within his circle of power.
- Return of the Dark SideFerus Olin is trying to save the surviving Jedi, but his old rival Anakin Skywalker stands in his way.
- Secret Weapon The empire is preparing a secret weapon, and rebel leader Ferus Olin appears to be helping.
- Against the EmpireAs the Empire’s power grows, rebels face a choice: Give in… or fight. Some form pockets of resistance on battleground planets. Som go undercover, trying to fight the Empire from within. And others watch and wait. For Ferus Olin, hatred of the Empire is personal, the things that have been closest to him have been destroyed. The Jedi Order he once belonged to has been decimated. And the future isn’t looking much brighter… Unless a true rebellion can be born.
- Master of DeceptionFerus Olin’s in full blown double agent mode and that’s got him and his friends worried. Friendship and loyalty are certainly tested when it comes down to the question of “who do you serve?” or “How much hurt can one inflict while doing something necessary?
- Reckoning When Ferus Olin was a young Jedi apprentice, his rival was a headstrong student named Anakin Skywalker. Now Ferus is older, trying to save the Jedi order from extinction. His enemy, however, remains the same, because Anakin Skywalker is now Darth Vader…and Darth Vader wants Ferus Olin destroyed. This is their final encounter. The fate of the galaxy hangs in the balance.
Empire and Rebellion
by Martha Wells, James Corey, and Keven Hearne
- Razor’s Edge We can get this one through interlibrary loan. Call or ask at the main desk.Times are desperate for the Rebel Alliance. Harassment by the Empire and a shortage of vital supplies are hindering completion of a new secret base on the ice planet Hoth. So when Mid Rim merchants offer much-needed materials for sale, Princess Leia Organa and Han Solo lead an Alliance delegation to negotiate a deal.
- Honor Among ThievesWhen the mission is to extract a high-level rebel spy from the very heart of the Empire, Leia Organa knows the best man for the job is Han Solo—something the princess and the smuggler can finally agree on. After all, for a guy who broke into an Imperial cell block and helped destroy the Death Star, the assignment sounds simple enough.
- Heir to the Jedi Luke Skywalker’s game-changing destruction of the Death Star has made him not only a hero of the Rebel Alliance but a valuable asset in the ongoing battle against the Empire. Though he’s a long way from mastering the power of the Force, there’s no denying his phenomenal skills as a pilot—and in the eyes of Rebel leaders Princess Leia Organa and Admiral Ackbar, there’s no one better qualified to carry out a daring rescue mission crucial to the Alliance cause.
The Bounty Hunter Wars
by K. W. Jeter
- The Mandalorian Armor We can get this one through interlibrary loan. Call or ask at the main deskHe’s the most feared and successful bounty hunter in the galaxy. He is Boba Fett, and even the most hardened criminals tremble at his name. Now he faces the deadliest challenge of his infamous career—an all-out war against his most dangerous enemies.
- Slave ShipThe once powerful Bounty Hunter’s Guild has been shattered into warring factions. Now the posting of an enormous bounty on a renegade Imperial stormtrooper is about to start a frenzy of murderous greed. Hoping to fuel rumors of his death, Boba Fett abandons his ship, Slave I, and sets out to claim the prize. Yet his every move leads him closer to a trap set by the cunning Prince Xizor. Fett will die before becoming Xizor’s pawn in the Emperor’s war against the Rebels. And he may have to. For in order to gain his freedom he must outwit a sentient weapon that feeds on Human spirits. Then he must escape a galaxy of deadly enemies who want to make the rumors of his death a reality.
- Hard Merchandise We can get this one through interlibrary loan. Call or ask at the main deskWhen Boba Fett stumbles across evidence implicating Prince Xizor in the murder of Luke Skywalker’s aunt and uncle, Fett makes himself an enemy even he fears: the unknown mastermind behind a monstrous deception, who will kill to hide his tracks. Fett also finds himself in possession of an amnesiac young woman named Neelah, who may be the key to the mystery—or a decoy leading Fett into a murderous ambush. Fett’s last hope is to run through the list of Xizor’s hidden enemies. And since Xizor’s hidden enemies are almost as legion as Fett’s, the chance of survival is slim—even for someone as skilled and relentless as Boba Fett.
by Alexandra Bracken, Adam Gidwitz, Tom Angleberger
- The Princess, the Scoundrel, and the Farm Boy: An Original Retelling of Star Wars A New Hope Although the Rebel Alliance has won a few battles against the Empire, hope is fading. The Empire is about to finish building the greatest weapon the galaxy has ever seen—the Death Star. The rebels’ only chance to defeat it now lies in the unlikely hands of a princess, a scoundrel, and a farm boy. . . .
- So You Want to be a Jedi?: An Original Retelling of Star wars The Empire Strikes Back Reimagines the second Star Wars film in which Luke Skywalker trains with Yoda to become a Jedi after a rebel defeat on the ice planet Hoth and battles Darth Vader, who reveals a startling secret to Luke during their duel. You are Luke Skywalker, taking your first steps toward becoming the greatest Jedi in the galaxy. But the way will not be easy, and the power of the dark side is strong…
- Beware the power of the dark side!: An Original Retelling of Star Wars Return of the Jedi Presents a retelling of the third Star Wars movie, featuring Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, and Princess Leia as they battle the Empire. The evil Empire is constructing a second Death Star to crush the Rebel Alliance. But Luke Skywalker has other plans– to destroy the Empire and stop the Emperor once and for all. Yet there is one thing standing in his way… his father.
- Death Star by Michael Reaves and Steve Perry. The Death Star’s name says it all, with bone-chilling accuracy. It is a virtual world unto itself—equipped with uncanny power for a singularly brutal purpose: to obliterate entire planets in the blink of an eye. Its annihilation of the planet Alderaan lives in infamy. And its own ultimate destruction, at the hands of Luke Skywalker, is the stuff of legend. But what is the whole story, and who are the players, behind the creation of this world-killing satellite of doom?
- Battlefront: Twilight Company by Alexander Freed. Among the stars and across the vast expanses of space, the Galactic Civil War rages. On the battlefields of multiple worlds in the Mid Rim, legions of ruthless stormtroopers—bent on crushing resistance to the Empire wherever it arises—are waging close and brutal combat against an armada of freedom fighters. In the streets and alleys of ravaged cities, the front-line forces of the Rebel Alliance are taking the fight to the enemy, pushing deeper into Imperial territory and grappling with the savage flesh-and-blood realities of war on the ground. Also check out my review of this book.
- Aftermath by Chuck Wendig. As the Empire reels from its critical defeats at the Battle of Endor, the Rebel Alliance—now a fledgling New Republic—presses its advantage by hunting down the enemy’s scattered forces before they can regroup and retaliate. But above the remote planet Akiva, an ominous show of the enemy’s strength is unfolding. Out on a lone reconnaissance mission, pilot Wedge Antilles watches Imperial Star Destroyers gather like birds of prey circling for a kill, but is taken captive before he can report back to the New Republic leaders.
And many many more. May the Force Be With You!