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Introduction to Star Wars Novels 101

     Before we get too far along in this article, let's establish a few thing:  1) I am a Star Wars junkie, the novels are my version of crack, and George Lucas (technically Lucas Film Limited) is my dealer, 2) unless it has Infinities logo, it's cannon, and 3) I don't know everything there is to know about Star Wars, but I know a lot. 
     Anyone that knows me has probably seen me at one time or another with a Star Wars book in my hand.  I grew up on the original Star War trilogy, but did not get completely addicted until after the release of
Episode I:  The Phantom Menace.    Like many people, I was disappointed by the movie, but it sparked my interest in the universe all the same.  Back in high School I had read Timothy Zahn's Dark Force Rising and was completely enthralled, but for some reason I didn't read the rest of his trilogy of novels (known as the Thrawn Trilogy).  Until a few years ago, I didn't read that many books.  You could probably count the number of books I had read by the time I was 20 on two hands. 
     After seeing Episode I, I decided to get caught up with the Galaxy Far, Far Away (or GFFA for short) and picked up three books -- the novelization of Episode I, Steve Perry's
Shadow's of the Empire (which take place between The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi), and Zahn's The Last Command (the finale of the Thrawn Trilogy).  That's all it took, I was hooked.  Since then I have read around 20 different Star Wars novels 4 comic book graphic novels, and countless SW web pages and timelines. 
     I'm often asked by people, "what book should I start with?"  I've gained such a reputation at work that the other day someone stopped me and said "What's your name?  You know a lot about Star Wars right?" (I'm sure the SW ball cap that I wear doesn't help things at all, but what can I say, I embrace my nerdiness).   So I decided to compile a list, based on something I posted on TheForce.net's message boards and books I have read.  Below is that list.  I've also included a few notable links to some different SW web sites that I have found to be very informative.  I hope this helps you on your journey into the GFFA.  Happy reading. 

--Dave Brown

My Recommendations (in order of which to read): 
The Thrawn Trilogy by Timothy Zahn
     
Heir to the Empire
     Dark Force Rising
     The Last Command

The Jedi Academy Trilogy by Kevin J. Anderson
     
Jedi Search
     Dark Apprentice
     Champions of the Force

I, Jedi by Michael A. Stackpole

The Hand of Thrawn Duology by Timothy Zahn
     
Specter of the Past
     Vision of the Future

New Jedi Order
     
Vector Prime by R.A. Salvatore
     
Dark Tide I - Onslaught by Michael A. Stackpole
     
Dark Tide II - Ruin by Michael A. Stackpole
     
Agents of Chaos I - Hero's Trial by James Luceno
     
Agents of Chaos II - Jedi Eclipse by James Luceno
     
Balance Point by Kathy Tyers
     
Edge of Victory I - Conquest by Greg Keyes
     
Edge of Victory II - Rebirth by Greg Keyes
     
Star by Star by Troy Denning
     
Dark Journey by Elaine Cunningham
     
Enemy Lines I - Rebel Dream by Aaron Allston
     
Enemy Lines II - Rebel Stand by Aaron Allston

Other Worth Books (Good stuff, but not needed for the post ROTJ storyline):
     
Darth Maul - Shadow Hunter by Michael Reaves
     
Rogue Planet by Greg Bear
     
The Approaching Storm by Alan Dean Foster
     
Shadows of the Empire by Steve Perry

SW Links: 
TheForce.net

JMM's Star Wars Chronology

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