Rebel Force: Hostage

February 9, 2018 at 6:00 pm (Reads) (, , )

hostageRebel Force: Hostage by Alex Wheeler

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It dawned on me while reading this book that Rebel Force is a great title for this series, since it appears to be about the growth of the Rebellion, as well as Luke coming into his own Force powers. It makes for a good double-meaning, and suggests a greater depth to the stories. Unfortunately, the stories themselves don’t hold up well under scrutiny.

With this volume, Leia visits a planet near Alderaan where there live the Alderaanian refugees. While there, she’s kidnapped, and it’s up to Luke, Han, and Chewbacca to save her. It’s a better adventure than Target, but it suffers some because Wheeler seems to lose his grip on the characters. Leia comes across as petty and petulant near the end of the book, and it doesn’t ring true to her character. Luke and Han feel closer to the characters you would expect, but Leia feels like a different character all together.

Also, this book suffers from the timing problem that exists between the prequels and the original trilogy, where about eighteen years have passed, but characters who should be in their mid- to late-thirties are portrayed as in their fifties or older. It’s not Wheeler’s fault, but it stands out as an issue. I’d love to see a writer attempt to explain the aging of those characters.

Hostage also features Ferus Olin, a character originally introduced by Jude Watson in the Jedi Quest series, which is a nice throwback to her work in the Expanded Universe. For all the attention the Lucas characters get, it’s nice to see Watson’s characters get some love from other authors, too. I’d like to see more of her work get referenced in the adult books, too.

This is a decent read, even if it suffers from how Wheeler characterizes Leia. As far as kids’ books go, it’s compelling and interesting, and the kids reading them should overlook the quibbles I had with parts of the story. Adults, though, might have some issues with it.

Started: November 27, 2017
Finished: November 28, 2017

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