Title: Star Wars: The Weapon of a Jedi (Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens)
Author: Jason Fry
Illustrator: Phil Noto
Publisher: Disney Lucasfilm Press
Release Date: September 4th 2015
Genre: Space Opera, Fiction, Action/Adventure, Middle Reader
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away….
The REBEL ALLIANCE has destroyed the Empire’s dreaded DEATH STAR, but the galaxy remains convulsed by civil war, and the Imperial starfleet is hunting the rebels throughout the galaxy.
LUKE SKYWALKER, the pilot who destroyed the Death Star, is now hailed as a hero. But Luke seeks only to support the freedom fighters, serving the Rebellion behind the controls of his X-wing fighter.
Even as he flies alongside the pilots of Red Squadron, Luke feels stirrings in the mystical energy field known as the Force. And this farm boy turned fighter pilot begins to suspect his destiny lies along a different path….
My First Thoughts:
So I got this book, and the others in this series (I use that term loosely), after I saw the Force Awaken. I loved the movie, my family practically raised me with Jedi, Sith, Hobbits, and Star Fleet officers, and I wanted just more Star Wars! I’m excited to see if it will reveal any secrets!
This story is set between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back, or Episodes 4 and 5. It hasn’t been long since the Death Star was blown up by Luke Skywalker or since his importance, and fame, in the rebellion skyrocketed. Within this novel, we see just how Luke is getting accustomed to everything since the fateful explosion, including how to train with the Force without a wizened teacher.
I honestly didn’t realize that this book came with illustrations, especially since there was no illustrator credit on the front cover. So I was more than surprised, though rather delighted, to see that this book came with a few illustrations to capture some of the more important scenes within each section. Sure, they might have been a little bit of a spoiler, but honestly I felt like the illustrations were a wonderful addition to the book!
Growing up I always imagined what happened to our wonderful heroes in between each movie, specifically in the original trilogy. Every time I watch the older movies, I felt like there was something missing, that there were important events that shaped the characters into who they were for the second and final films. I always wondered how Luke learned to use the Force without Old Ben there to guide him. Sure, Luke would hear Ben’s voice every now and again, but that doesn’t function as much as a teacher. Well, this book served as an explanation, a little peak into what Luke to better command the Force and how he accomplished it.
When I say a little peak, I really mean that Jason Fry barely described the tip of the iceberg. However, I believe that it was enough to satisfy some of the questions I’ve been harboring since I was a child. It was really interesting to see, years later, your questions answered without an entire movie dedicated to it. The part that Fry did focus on in the book, regarding to Luke’s self-training, was actually pretty detailed in how Luke came to his conclusions and mastered his daunting tasks.
The one thing that irked me some about the book was how it advertised meeting characters from the newest Star Wars movie and being able to get clues into The Force Awakens. This book, and the others like it, was released a few months before the movie came out when nobody (for the most part) didn’t know what was going to happen. So the advertisement that it was going to lead the reader into the world of the Force Awakens was a big leap that everyone took. I read the book after the movie, and honestly the only character you meet that was a new addition to the movie only had about 30 seconds worth of screen time. The character never spoke and you saw him briefly, his name wasn’t even spoken in the film! The only reason why I knew who he was before reading was because my boyfriend got the action figure of the character and did some research, but even that didn’t bring up much. Sure, it was cool to learn more about Sarco Plank and see how he might be tied in later in the new films, but he was definitely not important in Episode 7 like the advertising made it to be.
I would recommend this to any parent who wants to get their child more into the Star Wars universe, or settle the child’s craving for more Star Wars. I believe that it would be a fun story for any young boy or girl, as there are characters for any child to love and connect with. The story isn’t very long and is pretty straight forward, so something that can easily hold a child’s attention.
Honestly, this book isn’t just for younger readers, sure it’s aimed at them, but let’s be real, a lot of Star Wars fans are kids at heart. With that said, I would recommend this book to any age, whether they are a diehard Star Wars fan or wants to become one. It’s a short read, something to use as a break between two larger books or just a fun adventure to help pick up your day!
The story is a pretty straight forward adventure that fills in some of the holes between A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back. You don’t need to see either of those movies first, or know what happens in them to enjoy the book. Fry actually does a wonderful job highlighting the big events from A New Hope and showing how they might actually affect Luke immediately after. It was also pretty interesting to see how Luke trained himself and how he was able to overcome small, yet daunting tasks. The book ends with hints at possibly having more books following Luke’s adventures, however, the main story gets wrapped up rather soundly. It’s definitely a fun, quick read to fix whatever Star Wars cravings you may be having!
I loved the illustrations! I’m actually a bit disappointed that Noto didn’t get credit on the front cover. His illustrations, while few and far between, were a wonderful addition to the book. He always seemed to capture just enough action within the pictures without spoiling anything, allowing the reader to wonder what was happening within the scene. And I loved how he kept each one simple and uniform in coloration, only using true color in one object per image. Fantastic work!