Force Friday: Farmers, Lightsabers, and Mechanics REVIEWING Ahsoka

Welcome to another Force Friday!!!! I'm backtracking a bit here with today's review. I actually read this book way back in August of 2018, but I didn't write a post for it. Out of the Star Wars expanded universe canon books I have read, this is the only one I have not yet posted a review for, so I figured I probably should. Let's jump into hyperspace...


Author: E. K. Johnston
Genre: YA Science Fiction
Year: 2016



Fans have long wondered what happened to Ahsoka after she left the Jedi Order near the end of the Clone Wars, and before she re-appeared as the mysterious Rebel operative Fulcrum in Rebels. Finally, her story will begin to be told. Following her experiences with the Jedi and the devastation of Order 66, Ahsoka is unsure she can be part of a larger whole ever again. But her desire to fight the evils of the Empire and protect hose who need it will lead her right to Bail Organa, and the Rebel Alliance...


To start off, let me say that Ahsoka Tano is one of my top favorite Star Wars characters. I loved her in The Clone Wars animated series where she was first introduced as a character, and I loved seeing her be brought back in Rebels, the second animated series done. I have a bobblehead Funko of her, I have a Lego figure, and I also have her as a Black Series action figure. I think she is a fantastic character and I was recently super excited to hear that she is going to be part of the next season of The Mandalorian on Disney Plus. 

Recently, a final season was released for The Clone Wars, also on Disney Plus, and it covered the final moments of Ahsoka's involvement in the events of the war. It wrapped up her arc with Clone Commander Rex, conflicts with Darth Maul, and some of the change she went through after leaving the Jedi Order. This book, even though it came out before the release of that season (several years before), picks up on the time after all of that. Darth Vader and Sidious are already in charge, Inquisitors exist, and she hasn't fully joined the rebellion yet. This book was much needed to fill in some of that gap for such a beloved character. 

In order to enjoy this book, you really need a lot of background information. There are a lot of names and events from The Clone Wars, that will leave you confused or like you're missing something, if you jump straight into this without knowledge of any of that. To read this book, you have to know where Ahsoka came from, what she has been through, and why she left the Jedi Order. This book is definitely for fans of The Clone Wars and not your average Star Wars fan who is only familiar with the movies. With that being said, let's talk about the actual book and what I like about it. 

The book picks up in Ahsoka's life after she has left the Order and the Clone Wars are done. To be exact, it is about a year after the Clone Wars have ended. The Empire is in control and Ahsoka is kind of just hiding out in the galaxy, under the name of Ashla. She generally works as a mechanic. These are the early days of the Empire, but already there are a lot of problems. We have corruption and violence and torture, and all those negative things that define the Empire. The opening of the book is Empire Day (a day which fans of Rebels will already be familiar with. Empire Day is a day of "celebration" that marks the anniversary of the original day when Palpatine took over as Emperor. Ahsoka is on the planet Thabeska and she is living as quietly as she can. At this point she is a very reserved and quiet version of herself. Her old life has beaten her down from what she used to be and shut down a lot of her spirit in some ways. Her plan is to go to the planet Raada, and keep living a quiet, peaceful existence. Naturally, this is not what happens. 

Thabeska and Raada are both Outer Rim locations, that were created for this book. We have never seen either before. Thabeska is the home of a smuggling family known as the Fardi clan, who Ahsoka works for as a courier. It is a windy, dusty planet, but generally a backwater kind of place. The same goes for Raada, which is a farming moon. Shortly after Ahsoka goes there, the Empire shows up. The planet is so out of the way, that it is perfect for the Empire to start growing a crop there to make military supplements, that makes the soil useless afterwards. Eventually, a rebellion kicks in, and Ahsoka joins in with the help of Bail Organa. That's the basic story. This book tells how Ahsoka gets back into action again and also how she gets some new weaponry. 

Truth be told, I love this book. This is my favorite of all the canon novels I have read so far, with Dark Disciple being my second favorite. Ahsoka is a fantastic character and this story provides exactly what you think would happen to her after she leaves the Order and the Empire takes over. She tries to live quietly, but something keeps her from doing that, and she joins the fight against evil once more, in her own way, forging her own path. The strength of this book is that it keeps the core of who Ahsoka is, even though her story is very different now and her reactions are different. It seems like this would be an out of character version, and yet it isn't. She used to be semi-reckless, in tune with her original master, Anakin, but now she is more cautious, more calculating in her efforts. She has grown as a person, but inside she still wants to do the things that she thinks are right, as evil rears its ugly head in front of her. This book also bridges a lot of little things between the shows and movies within this part of the timeline, like where R2-D2 is between the end of the Clone Wars and A New Hope

Also, how about the cover? I absolutely love it. It is a great tone, it shows Ahsoka a little bit older than when we saw her last, and it shows her with some new lightsabers. The lightsaber part of this book is one of my favorite parts of the entire thing, honestly. I'm not going to give it away, but it adds a lot to the lore of the universe, involving Kaiber crystals. The threats showing subtly in the background, the placement of Ahsoka, and the lighting of the cover is just all really great to me visually. This is one of the strongest book covers I've seen for Star Wars. 

Overall, you know what I think about this one. I love it, and I think it was a great bridge between the animated shows. Ahsoka is still a fantastic character by the end of it, and her journey really seems to come full circle as far as how she went from Jedi to outcast to rebel. I give Ahsoka a Lone Star rating of ✯✯✯✯, which only Dark Disciple has also received so far when it comes to the other Star Wars novels I've read and reviewed here. 

Here is my updated progress on the Star Wars canon novels. Following Ahsoka in the timeline order is Lords of the Sith, which I already reviewed last week. Links to previous reviews are provided below. A couple of new books have been published in 2019 and 2020, and I haven't had a chance to get copies of those apart from Queen's Shadow, so I am not sure when I will get to reading and reviewing them. They are included in the listing so that I keep remembering to try to find them. Next up will be Tarkin, which I currently have a copy of checked out from my local library and hope to talk about in around two weeks or so. Without the library open, I can't switch anything out, and they haven't bought copies of all the new books, so it might take me a decent while to get to them all (still haven't been hired at any libraries here yet, so I can't really buy them for myself either at this point --- this pandemic is messing with a lot of stuff) : 

Star Wars Canon Novel 
      Reading Order

 Dooku: Jedi Lost
 Master and Apprentice
 Queen's Shadow
 Queen's Peril
✅ Ahsoka

Thanks for tuning in to this installment from The Real World According to Sam, where I bring the books straight to your computer screen and even put in my own two cents on them.