George Mann is a bestselling novelist who has just released a small compendium of short stories. Entitled Star Wars Dark Legends it contains a selection of diverse stories to do with the darkside. While I enjoyed this read I was also expecting more. The stories are introduced as fables and there appears very little to connect them, nor do they have much in the way of internal logic. The short stories are mostly focused on creating a dark ending for whatever characters they contain. The author succeeds in that part, and he manages to create a decent degree of suspense. That said, they do read as do they were no more than fan-fiction. I get the impression somebody at Lucasfilm decided they stood little to loose by releasing the stories as a compendium. While they were right, and they are getting away with it, Dark Legends is not recommended.
The reason why is mostly because the stories are pointless. The 7 short stories have little connection with the Star Wars lore already established. There are some Jedi, a few Sith Lords and there is Darth Vader, but other than that the names and characters are entirely new. One reference to Dok Ondar’s Den of Antiquities seems a purposeful reference to Galaxy’s Edge. To continue, the stories are not exactly high-brow, but read like fables, each has a warning on a topic such as greed or vanity. Yet, the author does not delve too deeply in a logical story structure. Instead we read as characters are quickly seduced by the darkside and will always meet dark end. An end that was unexpected for the character, but sadly not for the reader who has an easy time guessing what the next page will bring.
I cannot recommend Star Wars Dark Legends
As I read through Star Wars Dark Legends in about three hours I cannot recommend it. For the money there is just too little to read. I enjoyed the story “Buyer Beware” which contains a mask that has a dark influence on the wearer. It is an obvious reference to the mask of the Dark Lord Momin. Yet, his name is never used, as though for copyright purposes the author was not allowed to do so. The story with Darth Vader entitled “The Predecessor” was my least favorite. It felt as though it had no internal logic nor did it feel consistent with established lore. The idea that Darth Vader would kill officers for slight is misunderstood, only serious breaches will entail force strangulation. And so we have a short story compendium which is just so-so in quality. I think its release may have been more suited to Halloween.
I will give kudos to the illustrator, Grant Griffin, his work adds much to the dark atmosphere of this compendium. Star Wars Dark Legends can be bought for $13.49 from Amazon. This book is mainly intended for sale in a souvenir shop, intended as a gift if you uncertain if the receiver will like it. Buy it if you really want to, or if you want to read something more spooky than normal Star Wars fare.