This article will contain very, very light spoilers from the Star Wars Novel, Ahsoka
Over the course of the past few years (specifically after April 25, 2014) I’ve almost incessantly read Star Wars novels as to keep up with the state of the New Canon. I can be honest in saying that while there are certainly different levels of preference between them, none of them have been disappointing. The most recent of the New Canon books has easily become one of my favorites, but I may be biased, considering that the featured character is, hands down, my favorite Jedi since her debut in Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Ahsoka written by E.K. Johnston, gives the beautiful, headstrong Togruta her own solo novel.
Timeline-wise, Ahsoka takes place between Star Wars Episodes III and IV, very shortly after Order 66, and prior to her next on screen appearance in the TV series, Star Wars: Rebels. Ahsoka had left the Jedi Order at the ending of the Star Wars: The Clones Wars arc “Wrong Jedi” (roughly 10 years prior, between Episodes II and III) and thus was not executed during the activation of Order 66. This made her one of a small handful of the Order left alive. She’d taken refuge on the planet Thabeska, with the Fardi family, under the name “Ashla” but when the “Empire Day” celebration came around, she knew that she had to run again.
This novel is very much is about the ex-padawan embarking on a journey to find her niche in the galaxy outside of being a member of the Jedi Order or commanding Clone Troopers. She has skills but the urge to help others is beyond her ability to resist. The tone of the book is somber at many points, and for good reason. As a Togruta, it’s very much a part of her culture to convene with others, and having lost the only people that served as her family, she is experiencing an intensive depressive period. Regardless of her attempts to steer clear of the Empire, Ahsoka very quickly she finds herself face to face with the Empire and is forced to make difficult decision after difficult decision, while combating with the overwhelming feelings of loss and loneliness.
This novel is extremely representative as Ahsoka as a character and all of her actions felt like her. I have to congratulate E.K. Johnston on portraying her so well. If there are any flaws there is definitely a slow start to the book, but not to a fault. You really get a sense of her pain and loss here, and it’s required to set the tone of the novel. I will say that you cannot go into this book with zero idea of who Ahsoka is and expect to understand everything. There are heavy references from her time during the Clone Wars without very much backstory to support it, save for a few short blurbs here and there. If you’ve watched both Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars: Rebels, you’ll get the most out of this novel. If you haven’t. I suggest you look up and watch her stories out of the former, at least.
Otherwise? Pick this book up today! It’s not too long, and it has decent pacing. It also answers all of our questions about what Ahsoka had been doing since she left the order. Also the final few chapters are absolutely MUST READ. The ending scenes are testament to just how powerful the Togruta is. The entire book she struggles to find her place and at one point she does, and it is so very evident that you won’t miss it. She was done so much justice, and it really makes me question just what tier she is on in terms of Force Mastery and combat ability. I think she’s higher up the rungs than we may have thought.