Star Wars Ahsoka Paperback – October 3, 2017
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"Ahsoka is a character exploration with sides of action, politics, and drama with an emotional center that gives me a greater appreciation for Ahsoka's role in the galaxy."―Nerdist
"Full of action, emotion, and yes, plenty of answers, Ahsoka is a must-read for any Star Wars fan."―TV Source
About the Author
You can follow Kate on Twitter (@ek_johnston) to learn more about Alderaanian political theory than you really need to know, on Tumblr (ekjohnston) if you're just here for the pretty pictures, or online at ekjohnston.ca.
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The story largely focuses on Ahsoka learning to deal with the horrific loss of all her Jedi friends by the programmed betrayal of her former clone friends and how those great losses have made her emotionally distant from everyone. Feeling alone, the Empire seems too overwhelming to her at first and she does whatever she can to keep a low profile but seeing the brutality of the Empire’s methods of control slowly make her realize that she cannot just sit by and watch such misery and as the story goes on she finds her true self again and comes to see that maybe she isn’t as alone as she thought she was.
-I love the cover! Kudos to Wojtek Fus.
-You learn the origin of her white lightsabers
-Introduction of Inquisitors
-The book does well at canon immersion. You get various small tidbits about other parts of the galaxy such as Kashyyyk, Obi Wan, force wielders, Ilum etc. Just gives you an overall feel of what is happening and how this all fits in.
-Bail Organa and R2-D2, its cool seeing what they’re up to.
-Origin of Fulcrum
-The Clone Wars ended only one year ago yet there were no clone troopers present in any of the Imperial forces in this book. Really? That seems unlikely. Just a pet peeve that didn’t get explained to my satisfaction.
-Her new friends on Raada were somewhat bland which made it hard to care about them
-The story seemed beneath Ahsoka’s skill level and, as such, made the ending a bit anticlimactic. However, when I look at it as only the beginning of her finding herself again and the beginning of her 13 year journey to Rebels then I like it much more.
-There is more drama than action for the first three quarters of the book. However, I view this drama as helping Ahsoka realize her true calling, take action and be herself again so I’m okay with it but just warning the new readers.
Oh, another warning, I intentionally read this book before starting Star Wars Rebels because I heard this took place before Rebels, and it does, however, I did have some confusion when she had flashbacks to the Siege of Mandalore which, I discovered after a little internet research, was apparently shown in Rebels. So keep that in mind if any of you, like me, haven’t seen Rebels yet.
Overall, I like the book and recommend it for anyone who is a fan of Clone Wars the series and/or Ahsoka but, as I said, it feels like this is just the beginning, not a complete catch up of her activities. I don’t think I would recommend this book for anyone who is not familiar with The Clone Wars series as you may get lost by many of the book’s references. Since they left a 13 year gap in Ahsoka’s history between this book and Rebels I’m hoping we’ll see more of Ahsoka’s adventures in the future or maybe even her own series, which would be great!
I’d give it 3 out of 5 stars.
OK, time to start Star Wars Rebels now. :)
Jedi Padawan Ahsoka Tano was first introduced in the Star Wars: The Clone Wars animated series and quickly became a fan favorite. Viewers watched her grow from a “snippy,” brash padawan learner to a confident young warrior who frequently saved the day for her master, Anakin Skywalker. Thrust into the crucible of combat with the besieged clone battalion and their Jedi on the planet of Christophsis, Ahsoka had to learn quickly and be a strong warrior from an early age. Through the remainder of the Clone Wars, Ahsoka was present at several key battles and forged tight relationships with many, including Clone Captain Rex, the astromech R2-D2, and Senator Bail Organa. All three of these characters figure into Ahsoka in important ways.
*** VERY MILD SPOILERS FOLLOW***
The novel features many flashbacks, interludes, and scenes which answer some lingering questions since the end of The Clone Wars, raise a few more, and provide detail that help link the prequel and original trilogies. Here are some of my favorites:
' Maul and Ahsoka at Mandalore
' Ahsoka’s last interaction with Rex (until Star Wars Rebels reunites them)
' Insight into Anakin’s thoughts as “Obi-Wan’s new padawan” approaches Christophsis
' Obi-Wan’s solitude – and finding an old friend – on Tatooine
' The origin of Ahsoka’s white lightsabers and the codename Fulcrum
' Ahsoka’s thoughts about Barriss Offee
Most of the plot of the novel centers on Ahsoka’s life as she maintains a low profile to avoid attention from the Empire. She has to find odd jobs to get by, and tries not to form close relationships with others. Her connection with the Force is weakened. She thinks of the “family” she has lost due to the destruction of the Jedi Order, and searches her feelings to try to discern Anakin’s fate. Readers can feel her loneliness. Ahsoka has always been a jovial, outgoing person, quick to make friends and gain others’ trust. As it turns out, her charisma and leadership qualities have not suffered since the end of The Clone Wars; she continues to draw others to her and gain their trust, despite her efforts to live a simple life. As can be expected, she quickly finds herself at the center of a conflict. Also as can be expected, she must decide between using the Force to save the day, thus exposing herself, and maintaining her anonymity and allowing her new friends to suffer.
Overall, E.K. Johnston absolutely matches the feel of The Clone Wars and Star Wars Rebels. Ahsoka does a fantastic job of bridging the gap, though it does not account for the entire time period between Ahsoka leaving the Jedi Order and her first appearance at the end of the first season of the current cartoon series. Perhaps there are more books forthcoming – hopefully also penned by Johnston!
Ahsoka is also available as an audiobook narrated by Ashley Eckstein. Eckstein, of course, is the only actor who has ever voiced Ahsoka's character. For what it's worth, I could hear Ashley reading all of Ahsoka's lines in my head when I read the print version. It's unavoidable.
Fans of Ahsoka Tano, The Clone Wars, and Star Wars Rebels will devour this book. Highly recommended.
Top international reviews
Sadly, it moves slowly, doesn't really have any strong or compelling characters and doesn't develop those it does have. This includes Ahsoka herself. My daughter abandoned it less than half way through, though does say that she'll get around to the rest of it herself. One day. I did finish it, but couldn't honestly tell you what happened at the end it made that little impact on me.
While "Ahsoka" is competently written, I never felt myself being particularly drawn to any of the major characters. A great opportunity was missed to tell a compelling, character driven story in favour of overly simplified characters and a plot which had very little originality.
The story follows Ahsoka not long after leaving the Jedi order in the early Empire days, as she evades Imperial hunters and tries to find her place in the galaxy.
The YA style is highly appropriate for the point we find Ahsoka at but still highly readable for someone like me who is long past their teens.
My only issue, and it's a bit of a silly one is that at the start there are quite a few characters introduced quickly and it was hard to keep up with all the names at first.