One of the ways I get my Star Wars fix in when there isn’t a new movie coming out is to catch up on the new canon novels. I’ve read several, and most of them are really good. In my podcast last week, I discussed The Phantom Menace, which got me to thinking about Qui-Gon Jinn. I remembered there was a book about him released recently, Master & Apprentice by Claudia Gray. It’s been on my list of books to read, so I decided to sit down and finish it.
Claudia Gray has written a few of the canon novels, including Leia, Princess of Alderaan, Bloodline, and Lost Stars. I’ve read all of these and really enjoyed them. Leia is my favorite Star Wars character, and I always love hearing more of her story. Obi-Wan is another of my favorites, and he features highly in Master & Apprentice.
Master & Apprentice takes place before The Phantom Menace. It is about Obi-Wan as a teenager and the early timeline of his training with Qui-Gon. It also gives a bit more insight into Count Dooku before he became a Sith. I really enjoyed reading more about the relationship between Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan. I think the master/padawan relationship is one of the most complicated and interesting relationships that exists in the Star Wars universe. Seeing Obi-Wan and Anakin interact within this relationship is one reason why I really do like the prequel trilogy a lot.
Without giving away too much of the story, I will say you get more details about the Jedi Council in this book. The main story involves another Jedi who has been helping to raise a young queen on the planet of Pijal. The planet is preparing for her coronation when violent attacks start happening. This is seemingly to interfere with a treaty that is to be signed. Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon visit the planet to investigate.
I loved this book for several reasons. The main storyline was compelling, and it made you care about all of the characters involved. The timeline is one of my favorites in the Star Wars universe, back in the days of the Republic and the Senate. I also enjoy reading about the Jedi Council and the times when the Jedi were actively protecting the Republic. (And yes, I know this means I really need to buckle down and watch all of The Clone Wars!) I wish we had more even more books about our favorite characters from this time.
All in all, I think this book was great. I highly encourage any Star Wars fan to read some of these canon novels, if you haven’t already. On screen, you can really only see what the characters are DOING. In the novels, you get a taste of what they are also THINKING. This really deepens the understanding of their motives, why they do what they do. I think that only enhances how interesting they are and the complications of their relationships. Star Wars is full of epic stories, and Master & Apprentice is just one of many that a true fan should definitely enjoy.