Star Wars Books Thread

Discussion in 'Star Wars' started by Mr Light, Feb 12, 2015.

  1. Reverend

    Reverend Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2002
    Location:
    UK
    I hate to say it guys, but at this point the real problem isn't Kirk, it's the people who persist in arguing with him over and over and over despite knowing full well he never listens or has anything constructive or even interesting to say. That's what keeps hijacking these threads.
    Now I don't wish to single anyone out so I'll just say to whomever is reading this: if his opinions bother you so much that you can't resist responding, just put him on your ignore list. It's as easy as that.
     
    Dimesdan likes this.
  2. kirk55555

    kirk55555 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2011
    Location:
    Washington State, USA
    The only apparently canon thing about the real Thrawn I don't like is that Zahn had him dressed like Fred Flintstone at one point. There is nothing about Fake Thrawn that came from the real Thrawn except a name, partial appearance, looking at art (although fake thrawn does it for different reasons) and, apparently, caveman cosplay.

    As for the twist

    I don't hate it because I'm biased, if it had been written well I'd just say it. I admitted to enjoying Ahsoka even though I went in expecting to hate it. But, the twist was terrible and made absolutely no sense. In no sane universe, even one with space wizards, should it have worked. It doesn't even make sense as a plan someone could have, and the motivation makes no sense at all. So not only could the plan never have worked, and was barely a plan anyway, no one had any real motivation to enact the plan in the first place.

    As far as I could tell, at least. I only skimmed the pages. Apparently Thrawn pretended to be exiled to infiltrate the Empire for...absolutely no reason. There was nothing stopping him from flying the Courscant, revealing his Anakin connection (and as an unknown alien people would almost certainly bring him to the Emperor's attention) and getting into the Empire that way. Its not like the Chiss have any real motives. They're not trying to take down or influence the Empire. It barely seems like Thrawn is interested in doing that.

    As far as I can tell, Thrawn just really wanted to serve the Empire, because he admires their way of thinking (dictatorship over freedom, which has admittedly been something the Chiss supported even in the old EU, although it was more a group of families then a single emperor). The Chiss help Thrawn do this...just because, I guess. It goes completely against the entire doctrine of the species, since its pre-emptively doing something, but I guess Zahn forgot about that. Except Thrawn still mentions that is a thing with the Chiss, so Zahn apparently forgot about no pre-emptive activities sometime after the wrote the first part of the book but before finishing the book.

    Back to the book specifically,

    I like how it actually shows there is no way for Pryce to have realistically get to where she is on Rebels based on where she is in this book. She runs a mine, then she badgers civil servants on Courscant then yada, yada, yada she's a governor and helping run a fleet. All of this in, at max, probably 12-14 years. That's assuming that Thrawn popped up within a few years of the Empire rising. A person from some random planet with no qualifications could never get to Pryce's position in Rebels. Even if she becomes great at politics, its not going to take her that far.

    Then we have the standard "racist (specist?) Captain hates alien so he'll have to over come her" thing. I wonder if he'll use his abilities to ruin her or at least elevate himself over her. Well, actually, I don't really wonder. Its such an obvious obstacle its pathetic.

    I know this guy won't see this post, but I still have to laugh at this particular statement. Yeah, absolutely nothing constructive or interesting to say, on any subject ever, because I disagree about some things in this thread. Yeah, that makes sense :vulcan:
     
  3. WebLurker

    WebLurker Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2016
    Whatever.
     
  4. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    I know I shouldn't let him get to me, and I apologize for continuing the derailment of the thread (but not for the things I said), and I will not respond to him any more.
    Have any of you guys read Smuggler's Run, the Han Solo junior novel from The Journey to The Force Awakens line? I got it a while ago and I was thinking about it possibly being one of the next things I read.
     
  5. Reverend

    Reverend Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2002
    Location:
    UK
    It was OK, nothing special. It's one of a set of three short stories/junior novels/whatever based around the OT cast and if I'm honest it's the weakest of the three. The other two are 'Moving Target' which has Leia on a mission for the Rebellion just prior to RotJ and 'The Weapon of the Jedi' which has Luke visiting the ruins of the Jedi temple on Devaron some time between ANH & tESB.

    There was a similar set done for the Rey, Finn & Poe though personally I found the Finn & Poe ones to be very dull.
    The Rey one on the other hand I found to be a real page turner. Not sure why since again, it's very contained and doesn't add much of substance but I found it compelling and well told nonetheless. I suppose it could just be that her situation on Jakku is inherently more interesting?

    I've been working my way through the new short story type material for a while now (getting a real "Tales from Mos Eisley Cantina" vibe so far) and just got done with 'The Perfect Weapon'.
    I think next I'll try 'The Crimson Corsair and the Lost Treasure of Count Dooku'. The title certainly sounds fun. ;)
     
  6. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    Thanks. I own so I'll still read, but at least now I know to go in with to high of expectations.
     
  7. tenmei

    tenmei Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2004
    Location:
    Manchester, UK
    The Poe story is referenced in the Poe comic too.
     
  8. Tuskin38

    Tuskin38 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    Oh? I've read the comic but not the story.
     
  9. Hippocrates Noah

    Hippocrates Noah Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2016
    Location:
    Medieval England, Iowa
    I'm enjoying Thrawn so far. It's not the best Star Wars story I've read, or best Thrawn story, but it's entertaining. My one gripe is that a lot of these characters aren't very well developed, to the point that I don't recall them even getting a cursory physical description. I don't feel like I understand this Eli Vanto at all and I don't even know how to visualize him in my head when I'm reading a scene. I have noticed that characters we already know/love like Thrawn and Palpatine are unnecessarily described for us though. At one point I assumed that Vanto must be a character from one of these animated shows I don't watch or some book I haven't read but apparently this is his first appearance. I don't guess these new characters are as important to understand as Thrawn though. And he's still entertaining.
     
  10. Tuskin38

    Tuskin38 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    I think Vanto is meant to be 'us' in some regards. Looking on at Thrawn.
     
  11. kirk55555

    kirk55555 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2011
    Location:
    Washington State, USA
    Note: Its a very long TLD;DR type post, but I am trying to clear the air, its not a rant or anything. In the 10 or so hours since my last post, I've come to some conclusions about my behavior and my arguments which I don't consider to be good.

    Even if its just for me, some more thoughts on what I'm reading. This time though, a twist of fate occurred: Good things happened! Plus some decent writing, and no moments where I really disliked anything.

    After the last big argument here this morning I decided to try to be a bit more impartial and actually think about the book, and decided that while parts annoy me I'm very far away from hating or even disliking it.

    The book...is not bad. That said, I know how the book ends, and unless it becomes the greatest book in human history its going to be hard to justify the end "twist". Still, Zahn had at least one real Thrawn moment in him, and somehow managed to sneakily make me care about Vanto and curious to see what will happen with Thrawn.

    HE ACTUALLY DID SOMETHING THRAWN-LIKE! It wasn't some magical, impossible thing either. He even proved to not be omnipotent. It was a situation with pirates stealing a Tibanna gas frieghter. He correctly deduced that a "survivor" of the ship's crew was actually a pilot, and while he and his men got captured it was part of a bigger plan. The only really lucky thing is that he just happened to have two buzzdroids, which they had established before but still felt a bit too convenient. The interrogation of pirates they captured also worked pretty much perfectly for something Thrawn would do. The whole thing had some deductions that made sense for him, and the whole section just flowed very well.

    The prejudiced Imperial Captain reacting to the events was completely cliched and I predicted what she'd say and do immediately, but besides that it felt like a situation that could have happened with the EU Thrawn. The "inner observation" parts with the book describing Thrawn's reactions to physical changes like small facial movements are still lame, but I can pretty much glance over them now.

    The parts with Pryce are tolerable, but she's not that interesting. Nothing I dislike in particular, except how it doesn't feel particularly important and I just don't care about the character anyway. I don't really know what's up with Vanto. I know he's going to end up with the Chiss, but all the book really does is make you wish he'd tell Thrawn off so he could get back to his career. Which I guess means that, as a reader, I care somewhat about the character (that snuck up on me quietly).

    If we can get a few more Thrawn-like moments in the book I might actually consider it a win. It is a bit too focused on people outside of Thrawn, and his early antics were a bit tame. Although, thinking about it, his actions at the academy when he dealt with his attackers was a very Thrawn move, and if I forget the caveman attire his first appearance in the book isn't really out of character. Pryce's stuff could probably be cut and not effect too much, but its not the worst thing in the world.

    I also decided to watch the last two episodes of season 3 of Rebels , just to see if its Thrawn ended the season any better then he started (I also watched the episode with Mon Mothma, but that's not relevant to this discussion).
    It worked better then I thought, although Rebels' Thrawn relied a bit too much on the (Rebels only) martial arts skills he has for some reason. But Tom Baker as an angry force storm gives something a lot of points in my book, as do intense space battles. It also gave Thrawn an admittedly great excuse as to how the main cast of the show escapes, since without Bendu the cast, except ezra, would have been captured by Thrawn

    Don't get me wrong, new canon Thrawn in general has not yet earned a place next to the EU Thrawn, although I'll drop the "fake" title. Also, I'm not saying any of this because I was beat down by arguments. I decided to cool down and take a step back after the last round of arguments, and see if I could just look at things without my anger at how parts of the SW universe have been handled, and see if I've been overlooking things because I'd gotten too riled up. See what the other side has been saying, basically. I can admit to getting a bit too worked up about some things, and letting that get in the way of admitting when some things worked well with Thrawn or even Rebels (although I'm not lightening up on Rebels very much in comparison to the book).

    In the end, this isn't me recanting as such. I'm not doing a u-turn on all of my opinions and I'm not trying to backtrack because a few people won't reply to my posts about this topic anymore. I've looked at everything while being calmer and have softened towards Zahn and the Thrawn in his book. I still say that Rebels has, at minimum, done Thrawn a disservice with its portrayal, and that I'm not a fan of Dave Filoni's work.

    But, I will admit to enjoying the book at this point, even if it has some flaws. I'll also admit that I was being petulant and purposefully ignoring the fact that I have been enjoying the book (which wasn't to troll or anything, I was just really pissed and not seeing much past my intense dislike for someone who, I'll admit, probably doesn't have much control over the books outside of setting some precedents with his TV show). What really made me take a step back was the comments about the SW Adventure Journal and the Reader's companion. I know damn well they're both canon to the old EU, but I realized after posting that I had gotten so angry I'd disregarded that, which started me stopping and looking back over the whole argument.

    After doing that,I can even admit that my anger made me make some comments, specifically about Zahn and Filoni, that were both too harsh and untrue. I'm not absolving Filoni of things I think he's done terribly, but he definitely doesn't dislike Star wars, he almost certainly knows and likes the source material and I doubt greed or any form of ego mania are a part of Filoni's Star Wars work (and I'm not saying this because I'm worried my posts will be shown to anyone). Also, I like Zahn's work too much to think he's really a yes man or just writing what Filoni says, those comments, which I know I've maintained since Filoni first praised thrawn on the show (before the book was even announced) I do feel legitimately ashamed of.

    I got angry and I was unfair. I was wrong to say some of the things I said, not so much my opinions on quality (since that can be subjective) but by making it personal. I also blinded myself to some things by getting too worked up and angry. I know this post is the definition of TL;DR, and some people will just call it trolling or whatever. I just wanted to make clear that I made myself calm down, and can admit I've said things I regret, some things that I shouldn't have said and weren't true, and pretty much worked myself up into such a state that I was unwilling to admit even liking things that, after calming down, I can say I do like.
     
  12. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    I'm impressed, it's nice to see you working on being more open minded here.:techman: (I mean this with all sincerity, just in case you think I'm being sarcastic)
     
    fireproof78 likes this.
  13. fireproof78

    fireproof78 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2014
    Location:
    2nd Week of Advent
    I also will say, with all honesty and respect, that it takes a big person to admit such things. Thank you for doing so, and I look forward to more constructive discussions down the line.
     
  14. Neroon

    Neroon Mod of Balance Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2000
    Location:
    On my ship the Rocinante
    First, I would like to say that you did well, @kirk55555 with your "mea culpa". It has saved you from a warning at the moment. However, even with that admission, you have got to realize you're no standing on the best of positions right now. Make sure that you keep flying straight for awhile, now.

    Everyone ... in addition to treating each other respectfully, please make sure you also remember that folks like Zahn and Filoni are people who may not post here but should still be treated with that same kind of decency.
     
  15. WebLurker

    WebLurker Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2016
    Righto. :bolian:
     
  16. Hippocrates Noah

    Hippocrates Noah Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2016
    Location:
    Medieval England, Iowa
    I hope not, because I've spent most of the book asking "What's this idiot's problem?". All he wants to do is get back to his spreadsheets. It's not just him though, there are plenty of other characters, species and planets that don't receive even a little description.
     
  17. Tuskin38

    Tuskin38 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2011
    Ok, maybe I didn't word that exactly. But hes witnessing Thrawn rise through the ranks.
     
  18. Hippocrates Noah

    Hippocrates Noah Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2016
    Location:
    Medieval England, Iowa
    Yeah, he's basically filling the slot of Pallaeon or Jorj Car'das, but those characters filled that role while still managing to be fleshed out characters.
     
  19. Dimesdan

    Dimesdan Living the Irish dream. Premium Member

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2007
    Location:
    The Republic of Ireland
    As am I. Having not long read the Thrawn Trilogy, other than his being younger (and seeing things from his POV), this is the very same Thrawn as he appeared in Rebels and in the Legacy's timeline.
     
    Hippocrates Noah likes this.
  20. WebLurker

    WebLurker Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2016
    "Legacy's timeline"?