As another installment of the journey to The Force Awakens, Disney Lucasfilm Press released four stand-alone novellas by Landry Q. Walker. All are subtitled Tales From A Galaxy Far Away, and are part of the same series as The Perfect Weapon.
All four are compact stories that take place far outside the purview of the main Star Wars film characters and storyline. As they’re so short, I decided to review all four here instead of creating individual posts for each story.
All Creatures Great and Small: First up, we have a tale with a unique concept. It centered around an elderly storyteller with an affinity for communicating with small creatures. It had a Jim Henson vibe that I found particularly enjoyable. The hero was a very original choice in a franchise that’s usually dominated by swaggering blaster-wielders and powerful Force users. There were also plenty of fun and funky alien pets for the Star Wars fauna lovers to enjoy. This was definitely my favorite of the four tales.
The Face of Evil: This was by far my least favorite of the series. Everything about it fell flat. The lead was a cardboard cutout with motivations that were hard to believe. All her decisions defied logic. The ending was extremely obvious from early on and it just felt cheesy when the dramatic reveal was made. There was also a really bizarre attempt to cram in a Frankenstein parody, complete with a hunchbacked assistant supposed to be an Igor stand-in aiding the mad scientists who used bolts of lightening to bring life to their monstrous creations. There was no protagonist and nobody for the reader to actually care about.
High Noon of Jakku: This was an enjoyable read that chose a unique take. It opens with a show-down between the constable of a small barren town on Jakku and a rogue droid before pulling back to unfold the tale of how the two came to face off. There was a distinct Western flavor that was a bit reminiscent of Firefly. It was a droid-heavy story, which is always a big hit with me personally.
The Crimson Corsair and the Lost Treasure of Count Dooku: Finally we have the story with the closest ties to the Prequel trilogy. There’s many references to the Clone Wars peppered throughout, which makes sense as this story has its roots there. As it was driven by the concept of the mysterious fate of a long-lost treasure, there wasn’t an abundance of characterization. The characters felt pretty flat, owing in part to the fact that there was a bigger cast of main characters than in the other stories; nobody got much time for the audience to connect with them.