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Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens:…

Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens: Smuggler's Run (2015)

by Greg Rucka

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Han and Chewie do a "favor" for Leia. What could possibly go wrong?

http://nicolewbrown.blogspot.com/2015/12/star-wars-smugglers-run-han-solo-and.ht... ( )
  nicolewbrown | Sep 16, 2016 |
In this taut Star Wars tale, (taking place just after a New Hope), Princess Leia needs Hon Solo and Chewie to go on a special mission. Hon is not part of the rebellion, and is more anxious in paying off the debts owed to Jabba the Hutt.

Lieutenant Ematt is a leader of the Shrikes, and is the only one in charge of recon for the rebellion. He knows all of the rendezvous points, and where weapons, food and medicine are stored. After an ambush by the Imperial Security on Taanab, Ematt managed to escape and is fleeing to the planet Cyrkon where he is expected to be rescued, but the Imperial Security is hot on his tail! The Millennium Falcon is the only ship fast enough to reach Cyrkon before it is too late.

The planet is on the outer rim, and deep in Hutt territory. Danger would be coming at Solo and Chewie from all sides. For the right price, he finally agrees to help.

This is a classic Solo & Chewie adventure. Littered with fun humor, and harrowing escapes, I plowed through the book in hours. Great action, and terse banter made the entire book just plain fun to read! Highly recommend it to fans of Star Wars novels!

Phillip Tomasso
Author of Wizard's Rise & WIzard's War ( )
  ptom3 | Jun 14, 2016 |
I wasn't going to try to read all of the Journey to the Force Awakens releases, and then it just kinda happened because I couldn't contain myself.

Despite the YA label and slim size this was a pretty enjoyable and satisfactory read. Similar to Slow Bullets which was released earlier this year, it was refreshing to read a full story without any bloat.

The framing story takes place somewhere between ROTJ and TFA. It features an older Han Solo telling a few young bucks about the good old days, which happen to have occurred between ANH and ESB. This book was enjoyable because, like many of the other books in the new canon, it is easy to imagine it happening in the Star Wars universe. Han's lines flow like Harrison Ford and his and Chewie's hi-jinks feel totally in character.

The only annoying thing about this book is having to wait until December to see what hints are contained within it. ( )
  fisk42 | Nov 10, 2015 |
In Smuggler's Run: A Han Solo & Chewbacca Adventure, Greg Rucka evokes some of the best classic Star Wars stories, such as Brian Daley's Han Solo trilogy or Alan Dean Foster's Splinter of the Mind's Eye. An experienced science fiction author, Rucka effortlessly weaves a tale that is both true to Han Solo's character and that offers insight into both his and Chewbacca's friendship. The plot of Smuggler's Run focuses on Han and Chewie working a mission to extract a high-value Rebel operative before the Empire can capture him, along the way showing why a relative loner like Han takes sides with the Rebellion.
Smuggler's Run is part of a trilogy of young reader novels meant to link The Force Awakens with the original trilogy. The story itself is told in flashback by Han nearly thirty years after Return of the Jedi. These bookend scenes reveal that Han has either lost the Millennium Falcon or that various factions are trying to take it from him, perhaps setting up the scene in the teaser for the new film where he says, "Chewie, we're home."
Phil Noto's art carries on the black, white, and red tones that first graced the cover of Christie Golden's Dark Disciple. Noto's particular style adds a dynamism to the art that sets up each part of the style, complimenting Rucka's writing. The overall effect is a book that, though marketed at younger readers, will appeal to Star Wars fans of all ages. ( )
  DarthDeverell | Sep 29, 2015 |
One of a trio of middle grade books released as part of Force Friday and the Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens publishing initiative (the others are Star Wars: Moving Target: A Princess Leia Adventure and Star Wars: The Weapon of a Jedi: A Luke Skywalker Adventure), Greg Rucka's Star Wars: Smuggler's Run: A Han Solo Adventure takes place directly after the events of Episode IV: A New Hope and finds Han Solo and Chewbacca reluctantly taking up what should be an easy rescue mission for the Rebellion. Of course, things don't go according to plan, and Han and Chewie find themselves the targets of not only a band of bounty hunters sent by Jabba the Hutt, but also the Empire, as Imperial officer Alecia Beck tries to capture both Han and Chewie as well as the Rebel they are trying to rescue.

While this is a short book, Rucka clearly knows Star Wars: Han and Chewie feel and act like themselves; the Millennium Falcon is practically a character unto itself; the galaxy feels large; the Empire is relentless and imposing. Even the new characters introduced felt like they belonged in the Star Wars universe. The story is just plain fun and fast-paced, if not abruptly ended, but it still feels like a complete story. The prologue and epilogue bookending the main story are set in the time frame of Episode VII: The Force Awakens and while they don't give us any concrete clues to the upcoming movie, you do get a little taste of what Han and Chewie are like.

While Smuggler's Run is marketed as a middle grade book and it isn't a necessary read for the overall Star Wars story, it's an engaging adventure that will entertain any Star Wars fan, young or old. For me, it fell squarely between Moving Target (the best of the trio) and The Weapon of a Jedi (the weakest of them). I'll definitely be picking up Rucka's Star Wars: Shattered Empire when it is released, a graphic novel set directly after the destruction of the second Death Star.

A note on the design of the book: All three of the middle grade books are packaged similarly, each set up in three parts with a prologue and an epilogue. Before each section there is an illustration by Phil Noto that is presented in greyscale with red highlighted areas. The red is reflected throughout the chapter openers, as well as the dust jacket covers and the boards of the book. The entire thing comes together in such an impressive package. I'm hoping that if they do anymore middle grade adventures of other Star Wars characters that they keep this same packaging throughout, as it is top notch. ( )
  tapestry100 | Sep 21, 2015 |
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Greg Ruckaprimary authorall editionscalculated
Noto, PhilIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 148472495X, Hardcover)

Han Solo and Chewbacca the Wookiee team-up for an all-new adventure in this thrilling upper middle grade novel. Set between Star Wars: A New Hope and Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, the story follows everyone's favorite pair of smugglers as they fly the Millennium Falcon on a top-secret mission for the Rebellion. Hidden in the story are also hints and clues about the upcoming film, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, making this a must-read for fans old and new!

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 31 Aug 2015 00:42:00 -0400)

"In this story, set between Star Wars: a New Hope and Star Wars: the Empire Strikes Back, Han and Chewie must fly the Millennium Falcon on a top-secret mission for the Rebellion, while evading ruthless bounty hunters and a relentless imperial agent."--Page 4 of cover.… (more)

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