This young adult novel was a well-written and well-crafted story set between two of the films in the original Star Wars trilogy. All of the battle scenes, whether shoot-outs on ground or ship-to-ship battles in space, were dramatic and clearly written. The plot flowed at a good pace.
Unfortunately, I didn’t love it.
A well-written book still needs soul. It was also hard to figure out who this book was about, in the end. Han Solo was the hero, but it was odd that he referred to himself as “Solo” even in his point-of-view scenes. This added unnecessary distance, making me feel like I was watching a film rather than cheering him on during his escapades.
The other point-of-view character was a chilling Imperial officer. This worked, but only to a point. She was the perfect minion of the Empire, but there was nothing sympathetic about her at any point, which also makes her hard to connect to as a narrator. In addition, too much of the important plot points were revealed from her perspective when Han is supposed to be the hero.
In the end, the character who was the most intriguing to me was the female bartender. Many times, I wished I was reading a book about her life, instead.
(As a side note, it irritates me greatly that we don’t get to understand Chewbacca when Han obviously does, and we’re supposed to be in Han’s head. This significantly added to the distance/movie quality to this story that reduced it’s overall appeal.)