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Star Wars: Master and Apprentice by Claudia Gray

Interesting story exploring the relationship between the two of them.

Set a few years before the events of Episode I, it’s primarily focused on the relationship between Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan. Obi-Wan is chaffing under the tutelage of Qui-Gon and he is starting to doubt whether he is the correct master for his padawan. From this setting, they are both sent by the council to a planet that is being drawn further into the influence of the Republic, and is suffering from terrorist attacks, by the request of an old friend of Qui-Gon’s.

I loved the focus on the two of them, and the doubts that each of them shared. Qui-Gon was probably the most interesting character from Episode I and I like that he is finally getting explored more in canon now. There are also flashbacks to his apprenticeship under Dooku which is also well done. His friend, a very unconventional Jedi called Rael Averross, was also a padawan under Dooku with a traumatic past with his own apprentice so this theme really does run through the whole book.

There is a plot with the terrorists and the consequences of a new hyper lane and an unscrupulous corporation exploiting the world because of it but honestly in some ways it seems a backdrop to the characters. This is not a bad thing. There are a few other characters involved as well, a former slave and an eccentric thief who was raised by protocol droids, but though they have some screen time they are more plot devices than anything else even if they are realised relatively well.

There is also a load of foreshadowing, with Qui-Gon’s character especially, in relation to prophecies and also slavery. It’s fairly heavy handed but still fairly interesting. The end is a bit mad honestly, with a few things kind of coming from nowhere, and it all gets tied up with a little bow. It was OK but a bit disappointing. It’s not the best Star Wars book I’ve read but it’s definitely in the top tier and recommended for anyone who enjoys this period of the franchise.

4 stars

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