Last month, Disney/Lucasfilm Press published an anthology collection of Star Wars stories, about various characters and written by various authors, called Star Wars: Stories of Jedi and Sith.
It’s a very similar format as the book that was released a couple of years ago, Star Wars The Clone Wars: Stories of Light and Dark, which featured a number of different tales from The Clone Wars, most of which were adapted from the TV series. Stories of Jedi and Sith takes the same storytelling approach and book format, but these are all brand new stories that were created specifically for this volume.
There are ten stories in all:
“What a Jedi Makes” by Michael Kogge – Set in the days of the High Republic, a young girl and boy long to become Jedi, leading them to an encounter with Grand Master Yoda.
“Resolve” by Alex Segura – Qui-Gon Jinn is dispatched by the Jedi Council to Desinta to rescue a girl who is behind held captive.
“The Eye of the Beholder” by Sarwat Chadda – A young family is in danger when war arrives to their home world of Devalok, but they are rescued and helped by Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker.
“A Jedi’s Duty” by Karen Strong – After participating in the first Battle of Geonosis, Barriss Offee struggles with the role of the Jedi in the conflict as she must prepare to get back in the fight.
“Worthless” by Delilah S. Dawson – While pursuing Obi-Wan Kenobi through a jungle, Asajj Ventress becomes trapped – and must work with a similarly-trapped clone in order to escape.
“The Ghosts of Maul” by Michael Moreci – Maul investigates an old Sith Castle looking for power, but along the way is confronted by visions of foes from his past.
“Blood Moon Uprising” by Vera Strange – Darth Vader arrives on Tsukimitsurin to deal with a rebel nuisance that winds up being more formidable than expected.
“Luke on the Bright Side” by Sam Maggs – While working on Echo Base on Hoth, Luke Skywalker becomes trapped alongside a rebel soldier and must work to survive and escape.
“Masters” by Tessa Gratton – As Emperor Palpatine awaits the Battle of Endor aboard the Death Star, he thinks about Master Yoda – who, at the same time, talks with Luke Skywalker about the coming battle.
“Through the Turbulence” by Roseanne A. Brown – Not long after the Battle of Crait, Rey and Poe Dameron must go on a mission together for the Resistance – and wind up coming to a deeper respect for each other in the process.
The stories are easy and quick reads, and they are extremely character-driven. These aren’t stories that are driven by the events happening nor are they so much focused on worldbuilding as much as they are shining a spotlight on these characters, giving a glimpse of their journey in a particular moment.
“A Jedi’s Duty” was a particular highlight for me, as it really took a moment to dive into Barriss Offee’s state of mind, showing her wrestling with the Jedi having become warriors and her place in all of it. This story ties in very nicely to the arc of The Clone Wars where Barriss participates in the second Battle of Geonosis, but it also foreshadows where we know her story winds up too. “Through the Turbulence” was another one, as I really enjoyed the dynamic between Rey and Poe, seeing how both of them have to process recent events and help each other do so. But my favorite chapter was “Masters,” which primarily focuses on Palpatine but does so through contrasting him and Yoda, in the calm before the Battle of Endor.
It’s an easy read and a fun one, and the anthology nature of it keeps it fresh, moving between different characters with different stories chapter-by-chapter. Some of the stories are better than others – as will always be true in a collection like this – but overall it’s certainly worth a read if you’re looking for an enjoyable Star Wars book that dives into a number of Jedi and Sith. You won’t be missing much of pivotal significance if you decide to skip it, but don’t let that keep you from enjoying it in its own right.