Chapter by Chapter features me reading one chapter of the selected book at the time and reviewing it as if I were reviewing an episode of a TV show or an issue of a comic. There will be spoilers if you haven’t read to the point I have, and if you’ve read further I ask that you don’t spoil anything further into the book. Think of it as read-along book club.

Chapter By Chapter Star Wars - Shadows Of The Empire

So far we’ve learned that Xizor has a personal vendetta against Darth Vader and isn’t just trying to replace him as the Emperor’s BFF. Meanwhile, our heroes are trying to reach Boba Fett before he delivers him to Han, but as we’ve seen in the comics there are reasons Fett’s been delayed. Will that show up in this chapter? Also, Chewbacca has transferred the life debt he owes Han onto Leia. Let’s see what happens next.

Nope, no Boba Fett. Instead we get what I’m betting is the formula, one segment with our heroes and one with our villains, possibly two segments collected. For example, we have one scene with Luke and two with the bad guys, but one is Xizor and one is the Emperor and Vader watching what Xizor was doing. I think it works so far but what happens when the Rebels meet up with Black Sun and other forces come into play. If the comic is any indication there are more groupings of villains than heroes in this tale.

For Luke’s story, he returns to Ben Kenobi’s house to finish making the lightsaber. Ben/Obi-Wan left detailed instructions on building a kiln that create the right crystal for a lightsaber in absence of real crystals, how Jedi should be able to build a new lightsaber in less time that it’s taken Luke, and how Ben kept the Tusken Raiders away. The chapter knows when to stop short of boring anyone not interested in weapon construction or engineering but leaving enough for the geeks to play with. All fans satisfied. It also serves to show just how unfinished Luke’s training actually is and how far he has to go to become a proper Jedi.

Back to our villains, Xizor gets attacked by rather large man who blames Xizor for his father committing suicide. Interesting how little Xizor seems to care about this man’s revenge in light of Xizor going after Vader mostly due to his own vengeance. And it appears it was an attempt by Vader to get rid of a rival he doesn’t trust, with the Emperor subtly telling him “we need him alive for now so knock that stuff off”. Both well written scenes.

I’m also noticing that the chapters are getting shorter, close to the range of our last book, The Black Stallion’s Ghost, but thankfully not that bad. We have 40 chapters in this book, plus a four-page epilogue, so this is going to take until The Force Awakens hits DVD at this rate. I may end up combining chapters if this keeps up, which messes with the title of this article series. We’ll see what happens but join me next week for chapter 4.

About ShadowWing Tronix

A would be comic writer looking to organize his living space as well as his thoughts. So I have a blog for each goal. :)

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