Review: Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Stories of Light and Dark

Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Stories of Light and DarkAuthors: Lou Anders, Tom Angleberger, Preeti Chhibber, Zoraida Cordova, Jason Fry, Rebecca Roanhorse, Anne Ursu, Sarah Beth Durst, Yoon Ha Lee, Greg Van Eekhout, E. Anne Convery
Publisher: Disney Lucasfilm Press
Released: August 25th, 2020
Received: NetGalley
Rating: 4 1/2 kitties

I received a copy of Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Stories of Light and Dark in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Star Wars: The Clone Wars: Stories of Light and Dark is a collection of short stories set in the Star Wars universe (in case that wasn’t obvious). This collection is much like the animated series, showcasing smaller moments within a much larger time frame.

In total there are eleven stories to this collection, with some huge names worth noting. Actually, the authors involved are half the reason why I was so interested in this particular collection. The titles in this collection include: Sharing the Same Face by Jason Fry, Dooku Captured by Lou Anders, Hostage Crisis by Preeti Chhibber, Pursuit of Peace by Anne Ursu, The Shadow of Umbara by Yoon Ha Lee, Bane’s Story by Tom Angleberger, The Lost Nightsister by Zoraida Cordova, Dark Vengeance by Rebecca Roanhorse, Almost a Jedi by Sarah Beth Durst, Kenobi’s Shadow by Greg Van Eekhout, and Bug by E. Anne Convery.

Below you’ll find individual reviews for each short story in this collection. It is worth noting that the fans of the Star Wars: Clone Wars television series will be (very) familiar with many of the stories included.

Sharing the Same Face by Jason Fry
Rating:

Sharing the Same Face is a tale focused on the long and varied experience of the one and only Yoda. Here Yoda is working alongside several new Clone Troopers in order to thwart Ventress’s current plans.

“He’d let his senses be flooded by the life energies around him. And everywhere he visited, he found beauty and wonder.”

This was a quick and fun read, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. It’s a plot I’m familiar with, but it was still nice to see it all through Yoda’s eyes. It added a new perspective to the mix, and let me appreciate the series of events that much more.

Dooku Captured by Lou Anders
Rating:

Dooku Captured is another familiar event, though it’s told in a unique format. The entire short story reads like a message written by Count Dooku. It’s an odd mixture of formal and informal, all while recounting his latest battle against Anakin and Kenobi.

“I thought I sensed an unpleasant disturbance in the Force.”

This was another fun and quick read, though it’s definitely one of the more unique stories in this collection. Not because of the format itself, but because of the storytelling method. It’s told in the first person, which worked for such a quick story, but I don’t think this format would have worked as well for a complete novel.

 

Hostage Crisis by Preeti Chhibber
Rating:

Next up is Hostage Crisis. We’re back to following Anakin Skywalker for this story. His dedication to Padme knows no bounds, even during trying times. Though sometimes that creates more complications for him and his path of being a Jedi.

“He rolls his eyes. If they could get away from all this secrecy and have a few moments to themselves, the great weight of their responsibilities would evaporate, even just for a short while.”

Okay, so this is another one of those stories I distinctly remember from the show. Still, it’s nice actually getting a chance to see Anakin’s thought process during this whole scene of events – that’s something the show could never have done. It simultaneously makes the whole thing sweeter – and more concerning.

 

Pursuit of Peace by Anne Ursu
Rating:

Pursuit of Peace portrays all of the struggles that Senator Amidala went through while attempting to bring peace. There are times where it feels like she’s the only one trying to find a solution that doesn’t involve bloodshed – this is one of those times.

“But this time were was a new wrinkle: the Senate’s war funds were nearly extinguished: they simply could not afford more clones. Padme had entertained a small hope that this, finally, might lead the Senate to discuss peace – but she should have known better.”

Any story that contains Padme is an automatic read in my book, I adore her character. Ursu did justice to a wonderful character here, showing the complexity that comes with Padme’s position – and her virtues.

 

The Shadow of Umbara by Yoon Ha Lee
Rating:

The Shadows of Umbara is a harsh reminder that to many, the Clone Troopers are not real people. They are tools, and they are weapons, but little more than that. This story focuses on Rex, and the bias that he had to battle on more than one occasion.

“It was too late for caution to save them”

This is one of those stories that makes my skin crawl. Not because it was poorly written – if anything, the opposite is true. Just the idea of the Clone Troopers being disregarded in such a way. Getting into Rex’s head for this tale made it even more chilling (even while knowing how it was going to play out).

 

Bane’s Story by Tom Angleberger
Rating:

Bane’s Story revolves around the one and only Cad Bane, and you just know that this is going to be an epic adventure from start to finish. Bane’s been imprisoned, but that won’t last long. He’s going to break out, even if that means working with people he doesn’t trust. Followed by a whole new series of events – and crimes.

“But I’ll tell you what really happened: the true story of the biggest crime ever attempted this side of Kessel.”

This was another one of those shorts where I knew what was going to happen, but I loved following it nonetheless. Bane’s perspective is interesting, and it takes the plot to a different level. I would have enjoyed even more of it, truth be told.

 

The Lost Nightsister by Zoraida Cordova
Rating:

Asajj Ventress has been many things. The Lost Nightsister is a reminder of her past, while a battle for the future begins. It doesn’t matter what’s coming at her next, Ventress will find a way to survive. She always does.

“Ventress survived because the only other choice was not surviving, and she was too stubborn for that.”

You know a story is well written when it (almost) makes you feel bad for the villains. That is the case for Ventress’s story. She may do wicked things, but nobody deserves to have gone through as much as her, or to have lost so much. I really do love the way Zoraida Cordova brought this journey to life.

 

Dark Vengeance by Rebecca Roanhorse
Rating:

Dark Vengeance is the reminder we all need, that one should never count an enemy dead. Especially if their body is not sitting right in front of you. People like Darth Maul are much too difficult to kill, after all.

“Do they whisper my name in the classrooms of your academy, down the winding halls of your space station, in the hollows and fields of your farming planet, or across the dunes of your desert home?”

This story follows the battle of Darth Maul and Obi-Wan Kenobi, and yet it is still a surprising story. There are many elements I enjoyed about this read, including the unique storytelling style. There’s something chilling about the idea of Darth Maul addressing the reader.

Almost a Jedi by Sarah Beth Durst
Rating:

Ahsoka Tano didn’t expect to find herself fighting or running from pirates, not when she signed up to be a Jedi. Yet that is the story that unfolds in Almost a Jedi. She’s bound to protect Jedi younglings, in what should have been a relatively easy mission. Now, it’s anything but.

“I drew a poster of her signature double lightsabers for my room at the Jedi Temple. Okay, I drew three posters of her.”

This is a retelling of one of my favorite Ahsoka moments from the Clone Wars series. Not only does it highlight a beloved character, but it gave many younglings a chance to shine as well. This short story does that tale justice while adding a few details that I adored.

Kenobi’s Shadow by Greg Van Eekhout
Rating:

Obi-Wan Kenobi has long been famous for his stalwart portrayal of the perfect Jedi. Yet there’s no doubt that he is also a human, and he has his moments of weakness, as well as room to feel things such as affection, and loss. Kenobi’s Shadow is about the events that occurred on Mandalore, and how/why Kenobi got involved.

“Obi-Wan resisted the urge to charge out of the chamber, board a ship, and make the hyperspace jump to help his friend.”

From the moment her name came up, I knew exactly what story was going to unfold on these pages. It was a great story, even knowing what was going to happen (and why). I love this tale for it adds more humanity to Kenobi than many others out there, which is saying something.

About Liz (AKA Cat)

I am an avid animal lover, photographer, graphic designer, and much more. I love to create art, and am willing to try any artistic technique at least once. I am particularly fond of artworks involving a lot of emotion and color. The purpose of my blog is for me to be open and honest with myself and the world about my attempts to grow as an artist. My other major passion is reading. My TBR pile is larger than I'll ever be able to read, and yet I can't resist adding to it on a nearly daily basis. I love to read science fiction & fantasy, graphic novels, and pretty much anything I can get my hands on. I have a couple of blogs, as you can see. One is primarily my photography, while the other are my book reviews. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out!
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