Review via Yodasnews Contributor Jacob Burdis:
Staying true to form, Disney and LucasFilm in partnership with Del Rey are releasing another set of novels and short stories in preparation for the upcoming movie, Solo: A Star Wars Story. The most recently released novel, Star Wars: Last Shot explores an adventure with the scoundrel duo, Han Solo and Lando Calrissian, both pre Episode IV and post Episode VI.
The novel is set in 3 time periods that are shuffled throughout the story: Lando while he still owned the Millenium Falcon, Han shortly after he acquired the Falcon, and Han and Lando soon after the Battle of Jakku. The story begins when the Pau’an surgeon turned droid worshiper, Fyzen Gor, puts a sadistic, long-term plot in motion to achieve galactic domination. Yeah… it’s one of those stories where an unrelatable, psychopathic antagonist hatches an “end of the galaxy” scheme that comes within mere seconds of success until the brave heroes pull off the impossible and save the galaxy.
The best part of this story is getting to know younger Lando’s droid L3-37. Surprisingly, of all the characters depicted in the novel, L3 has the most depth. I look forward to seeing L3 in action in the upcoming film.
One of my biggest issues with this novel is that the grandiosity of the Fyzen Gor’s scheme actually tries to “one up” the threat of both Death Stars and Starkiller Base. In short, Gor has created a device to turn all of the galaxy’s droids into a homicidal army which, if successful, could be the most menacing threat the galaxy has ever faced. Treating this story in a “just another day saving the galaxy” one-off novel is both uninteresting and unbelievable.
The worst infraction committed by this novel was the misrepresentation of Han Solo, one of my all-time favorite Star Wars characters. The Han Solo in this novel, specifically in the later scenes, was depicted as a domestic, fragile, insecure mess. I get that he has become a bit more “tame” and soft around the edges since becoming a family man, but I almost didn’t recognize this version of Han. This was very difficult for me to swallow.
The audiobook version was well done with the exception of the voice for young Han, which happened to be Daniel José Older himself. The voice sounded like it came straight from the inner-city of Chicago and is nothing like what I would expect from a youthful Han. This was quite distracting to the overall experience.
In summary, the novel presents a disappointing, superfluous, somewhat unbelievable story that mishandles several of our favorite heroes and does little to add to the Star Wars Universe as a whole. If you have time, it is a mildly entertaining read with a few pieces that I expect will tie in to the new movie. But I don’t think you will regret missing out on this one in your preparations for the Solo: A Star Wars Story.
Click Here or the image below to pick this up via digital, audio or physical form. We would like to thank Del Rey/Penguin Random House for providing the review sample.