Review published on August 11, 2018.
Star Wars: Thrawn Alliances is a story in two parts. One is a flashback to the clone wars where Thrawn works with Anakin to save Padme. The other is set during Rebels where Thrawn has to work with Darth Vader to find a disturbance in the force.
This story is a must-read for either fans of the Clone Wars or Rebels TV series. It easily slots into both continuities. The main character is Thrawn, he links both the narratives. Yet the other characters take centre stage too. Padme is very well written and is depicted as being in charge of her own destiny. It is interesting to read the different perceptions of Darth Vader and Anakin, with Vader trying to convince himself that he is no longer that person. Thrawn has obviously changed between the two stories, in the first he is a strategist mainly, whereas in the second he is more political.
The stories are interesting and make the reader want to know what happens next. The novel jumps between timelines frequently, this is not a problem for the reader as it is very well done. The themes of the flashback story always resonate with the other timeline narrative. The flashback feels like it could have been an episode of the Clone Wars TV series, it has that sense of urgency.
It is not necessary to have read Star Wars: Thrawn to enjoy this novel. Though if you are behind with Star Wars Rebels then this novel could spoil some plot points. It is beneficial to the reader to have seen the Star Wars films to enjoy this book. There are lots of references to events that have taken place previously in the Star Wars canon that may go over the heads of those who are not up to date.
Most of the characters are introduced well enough for those with no prior knowledge. This means that the book would be a very good reading group novel. There are many themes that the group could discuss: the depiction of women, priorities, management styles, and is it wrong to want the bad guy to win in a novel.
This novel is a really good read. An interesting mix of character-driven plot and fighting set pieces.
Angela Finch 4/4
Star Wars: Thrawn Alliances by Timothy Zahn
Century 9781780898667 hbk Jul 2018
AUDIO: Not Your Sidekick by C.B. Lee