What I Read Today: Star Wars: A New Dawn


So technically I actually finished reading this a few days ago, but between Shadow of Mordor and the Rebels premiere, I’ve had other things to talk about. Really though, what’s the point of a Star Wars fanboy like me having an outlet like this if I’m not going to use it to talk about the first novel to enter the all-new, official, cross-media canon for the Star Wars Universe. I believe i said this when i wrote about The Clone Wars Legacy, but it is really exciting to be able to get in on the ground floor of all this new canon material. Let’s get to a New Dawn then, shall we?

The first thing to say is also the most important, and that’s that i really enjoyed this novel. It’s one of only two I’ve read set in a period other than the Old Republic, and the first to focus on a cast of characters with no connection to the movies. The book serves as a prequel to the Rebels series and delivers a lot of background on two of the series’ leads, Kanan Jarrus and Hera Syndulla (though certainly not all their background, gotta save some for the show). I don’t want to say two much about these two because i don’t want to spoil the book or any of the TV show for anyone, but I will say that it’s pretty easy to draw comparisons between these two and Han Solo and Leia Organa. Hera is far more active than Leia (at least as Leia is portrayed in the movies) but definitely has the same kind of heart, and there’s no denying Kanan’s cool, charming, easy-going attitude has Han written all over it. The back and forth between these two and the development of their relationship over the course of the book is a lot of fun.

For supporting cast we have bomb expert/know-it-all Skelly who serves as both a bit of comic relief and a driving facor to a lot of the conflict in the book (at least early on), Zaluna, who starts off with a seemingly minor role but by the end she is right at the forefront of everything and oh so lovable, and Obadiah, who has the smallest role of the three but is also the closest thing Kanan has to an Obi-Wan (except for the part that actually has Obi-Wan) and also kind of his wingman.

On the Imperial side the biggest stars are Captain Rae Sloane, acting Captain of the Star Destroyer Ultimatum, who does the book the great service of not following the story arc that I almost immediately wrote for her in my head upon meeting her but still playing a hugely pivotal role in the story, and Denetrius Vidian, who, while not being a force-user, is somewhere between Darth Vader and your worst bureaucratic/capitalist nightmare (needless to say he’s the villain of the tale).

A New Dawn is a lot of fun to read and is a great lead in for Star Wars Rebels. If you liked what you saw from the show’s first couple episodes and want more, then you should definitely pick this up. For my part I’m going to hope Disney/Lucasfilm fill in the five years that I believe are supposed to exist between the end of the book and the start of the series either with flashbacks on the show, more novels or comic books as by the way the book ends i’m sure that time period is very interesting for Kanan and Hera.


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