Star Wars Comics Review: Star Wars: Poe Dameron 18

This review of Star Wars: Poe Dameron #18 contains minor spoilers.

Writer Charles Soule has never shyed away from incorporating contemporary events into his comics tales. It’s why Poe Dameron #18 has a particular resonance about the importance of information as rallying point and commodity.

The latest issue of Marvel’s third Star Wars monthly series is jarring, illuminating and, above all, mindful, given the precarious nature of a galaxy that’s caught in a standoff by the Resistance and an ever-growing and seemingly morality free First Order.

Written by Soule, illustrated Angel Unzueta, colored by Arif Prianto, lettered by VC’s Joe Caramagna, the second part of the “War Stories” arc finds Black Squadron divided in duties, with Jess, Kare and Suralinda attempting to expose the ruthlessness of a First Order detachment on a world rich with thorilide deposits.

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Star Wars Comics Review: Star Wars 34

This review of Star Wars #34 contains minor spoilers.

There’s a certain satisfaction when you come across a neatly contained one-issue story in comic books. Star Wars #34 is exactly that, given it’s briskly paced, energetically illustrated and rollicking from start to finish.

This issue, written by Jason Aaron and illustrated by Salvador Larroca, with colors by Edgar Delgado and letters by VC’s Clayton Cowles, focuses on Lando Calrissian and Capt. Sana Starros.

It is, to be blunt, pure joy to read, from the cover by Mike Mayhew to the final page with the surprising reveal, setting the stage for issue #35.

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Star Wars Comics Review: Doctor Aphra #11

This review of Star Wars: Doctor Aphra #11 contains minor spoilers.

Doctor Aphra is overwhelmed, overworked and underpaid. In other words, she’s in her element.

But the ambiguously moral archeologist with an eye for profit must contend with far more than she would have liked in the pages of Star Wars: Doctor Aphra #11, given her efforts to remain dead to Darth Vader are unraveling and there’s little she can do to stop it.

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Star Wars Comics Reviews: Star Wars: Rogue One — Cassian & K-2SO

This review of Star Wars: Rogue One — Cassian & K-2SO contains minor spoilers.

Now we know why K-2SO handled that sidearm with such lethality toward the end of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.

We also know a great deal more about the nature of the relationship the ex-Imperial droid shared with Rebel spy Cassian Endor, too. This story is a splendid example of how comics can be used to build up and add to the mythology of Star Wars films.

Written by crime-fiction novelist and comics writer Duane Swiercyznski (check out his work on Dark Circle ComicsThe Black Hood), this one-shot provides a solidly entertaining origin story for Cassian Andor and K-2SO. The cover is by Julian Totino Tedesco with a variant (pictured) by Chris Samnee.

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Audiobook Review: Star Wars Battlefront II: Inferno Squad by Christie Golden, Narrated by Janina Gavankar

As the official audiobook reviewer for Coffee With Kenobi, it is my job to stay informed and provide a thorough review of each audiobook as it is released. Battlefront II: Inferno Squad narrated by Janina Gavankar is no exception. She is the image and voice used to create the main character for Battlefront II. I just finished watching season four of the Sleepy Hollow television series and watched the extended interview of Gavankar provided by The Star Wars Show.

We as fans of The Saga, quite frequently have been asked to welcome new talent into our galaxy. As I understand it, the idea that Janina Gavankar was, not only chosen as the main character for the new Battlefront II video game but was also invited to read this audiobook was so encouraging to me. Not only is she talented, but she is a fan! She is expressing her fandom and ability with such grace. She has allowed her passion and enthusiasm for Star Wars to shine through her performance. Iden Versio is the newest edition to the Star Wars cast of thousands and she is cool!

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Star Wars Comics Review: Darth Vader #4

This review of Star Wars: Darth Vader #4 contains minor spoilers.

In the penultimate issue of the first arc of Charles Soule’s history of the Dark Lord of Sith, readers are treated to something not seen since the waning minutes of Revenge of the Sith: A weakened Vader contending with not just failure, but mortal peril.

The result? Pain, horror and revenge.

Darth Vader — not yet ascendant in his quest to capture and bleed the lightsaber of Jedi Master Kirak Infil’a — falls deeper into the abyss of his own making. Yet, at the same time, readers see how much power he truly has and how callous he will soon become.

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Star Wars Comics Review: Rogue One #5

This review of Star Wars: Rogue One #5 contains minor spoilers.

Marvel stumbled with its comic-book adaptation of Star Wars: The Force Awakens in 2016.

With it’s six-issue Rogue One: A Star Wars Story adaptation, the publisher has done more than regained its footing, it’s poised to lap the competition.

The fifth, and penultimate issue of the mini series, released Aug. 2, continues what has been a stellar retelling of the cinematic hit, while offering modest bits of material not seen in the film.

That’s not surprising, given editor Heather Antos has referred to it, and rightly so, as a director’s cut. The film’s director, Gareth Edwards, was consulted ahead of the series’ publication.

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Book Review: ‘Star Wars: Battlefront II: Inferno Squad’ by Christie Golden

This review of Star Wars Battlefront II: Inferno Squad contains very minor spoilers.

Star Wars Battlefront II: Inferno Squad by Christie Golden (Dark Disciple) is the latest media tie-in for the new canon. Inferno Squad is the precursor to the highly anticipated Star Wars Battlefront II video game, scheduled for release this fall. However, as with its predecessor Star Wars Battlefront: Twilight Company, Inferno Squad is something all fans can enjoy, whether they be gamers or not. It works perfectly well as a standalone novel.

As with previous releases, such as Lost Stars, Tarkin, and Rogue One: Catalyst, the events of Inferno Squad are seen primarily through Imperial eyes. For those who are enamored of the Empire, that’s a pleasing state. For those of us who are more Rebellion-minded, it presents challenges. How can you find a way to sympathize — or empathize — with the enemy? A few books into the new canon, and I’m still working that out. It does happen, though! And Inferno Squad is an excellent example of when it does.

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Audiobook Review: Rebel Rising by Beth Revis, Narrated by Rebecca Soler

“One fighter with a sharp stick and nothing to lose can win the day!” is an absolute statement from Saw Gerrera passed down to his cadre of followers, including Jyn Erso. In the wake of other releases in recent weeks, the audiobook Rebel Rising by Beth Revis was released this week, somewhat under the radar. To be honest, I did not even know this book was going to be released, but when I discovered it had been published, I went right to reading/listening. One thing is for sure, we know a lot more about the growing up years of Jyn due to the telling of this story.

The audiobook is shorter than your typical run time probably due to the fact that this is meant for a younger audience. The content, however, is far from safe and youthful. This book is pretty dark and covers the time between when Jyn Erso was picked up by Saw Gerrera and the moment she was rescued from the prison by the rebellion. The narrator, Rebecca Soler, was a great choice for this novel because of the fact that she is able to perform a great Jyn style voice. She has also narrated many books in this particular genre.

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Book Review — Rebel Rising

This review of Star Wars: Rebel Rising contains minor spoilers.

There’s a sense of wonder, and dread, as you make your way through the opening chapters of Beth Revis‘ finely crafted and exquisitely paced story of Jyn Erso that plays out through the pages of Star Wars: Rebel Rising.

The wonder is the amazing facet of seeing how Jyn Erso became the woman that we, as Star Wars fans, experienced on the silver screen amid the kinetic action and brisk storytelling of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. The dread is knowing that her fate is sealed and that her life, with so much potential and promise, was cut short. Yet, more importantly, its knowing that Erso as a character is finite. This makes Revis’ prequel-style account of Erso so engaging and, in fact, so dramatic.

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