Hello, everyone! As I’m sure you’ve figured out by now if you’ve been following my blog, I love Star Wars. I consume almost every type of Star Wars media that exists: movies, TV shows, cartoons, books, and comics. This makes today an exciting day due to the premiere of The Book of Boba Fett on Disney+, and I decided it would be the perfect day to reflect on all the Star Wars books from 2021 as the year draws to a close. So, here it is, my ranking of the Star Wars novels released this year.
DID NOT READ – Victory’s Price by Alexander Freed
This book doesn’t get a ranking because I didn’t read it this year. This is the only adult Star Wars novel I failed to read this year. I tried to get to it, but after having it on my monthly TBR for several months in a row with no success, I decided just to leave it be for now. I didn’t like the first two books in this trilogy that much, and my motivation to finish it was just super low.
#10 – Ronin: A Visions Novel by Emma Mieko Candon
This was my least favorite of all the Star Wars books I read this year. I really wanted to like it because it was such an interesting, fresh take on the Star Wars universe, but it ultimately fell a bit flat. I got very bored with it and struggled to finish reading it. You can see all my thoughts in my review.
#9 – Doctor Aphra by Sarah Kuhn
I love the character of Aphra so much, and I never miss an issue of her comic book. However, this book just didn’t resonate with me. The script format along with Aphra being the narrator just didn’t really work for me. I liked the little bit of depth it added to the character and her relationship with Sana, though. See all my thoughts in my review.
#8 – Out of the Shadows by Justina Ireland
I really thought I would love this one because Vernestra and Reath are two of my favorite characters from the High Republic time frame. However, I did not like the introduction of Sylvestri as a main character and found her to be quite annoying and preachy. The book was also pretty slow in pace, but it did provide some key information about the Jedi and the Nihil. So, it was a bit of mixed bag, which I talked about extensively in my review.
#7 – Race to Crashpoint Tower by Daniel Jose Older
This middle grade entry of The High Republic was a short, fun read. It tied heavily into the events of The Rising Storm but also stood on its own relatively well as a self-contained story. There was plenty of action, and the pace of the book was fast. It also included some familiar characters from The High Republic Adventures comic book, which was nice to see. I really liked Ram, and I don’t think I’ve seen the use of the Force for mechanics quite like the way he used it here, which was an interesting addition. The writing was a bit annoying at times because it used words and phrases that are more modern colloquialisms and seemed odd in the galaxy far, far away. I also hated the characterization of the Drengir here, but that didn’t surprise me since the only place I’ve enjoyed them so far has been the comics. They just always sound silly when converted to text-only. Overall, though, it was a fun read that I gladly give 4 stars.
#6 – Thrawn Ascendancy: Greater Good by Timothy Zahn
I really enjoyed this book. It deepened the mystery behind who was orchestrating all the strange happenings at the edges of the Chiss Ascendancy. It also gave many new characters time to shine, but it took away from the time spent with Thrawn. Overall, it was good but not my favorite Thrawn book. See all my thoughts in my review.
#5 – Light of the Jedi by Charles Soule
Overall, this was a really good introduction to the High Republic era. It showed off what the Jedi of this era were capable of while building the mystery of the new villains. It felt a bit all over the place, though, and the multitude of story lines made it difficult to get attached to the characters.
#4 – Into the Dark by Claudia Gray
I really, really enjoyed this one. Reath Silas’s journey in this book was very good, and I loved how the book addressed grief. The Drengir were still cringey AF, but the creepy vibes of the space station up until their reveal were fun to read. See all my thoughts in my review.
#3 – Thrawn Ascendancy: Lesser Evil by Timothy Zahn
This was a great book. It wrapped up this trilogy really well while also leaving unanswered questions that I hope means we will be getting a lot more Thrawn action in the future. There was lots of action, space battles, and logic puzzles. It does rely heavily on the first two books of the trilogy, though. So, if you plan to read it, be sure to read them first. See more in my review!
#2 – A Test of Courage by Justina Ireland
I never thought a middle grade book would take the number two spot on this list, but this book was fantastic. The plot was interesting, and the character development was on point and left me loving Vern by the time I finished the book. I can’t recommend it enough if you are looking for something short and mostly self-contained from the High Republic narrative.
#1 – The Rising Storm by Cavan Scott
I loved this book, which shouldn’t come as a surprise since it is number one on my list. I honestly didn’t think I would though when I first heard about it. I initially thought the idea of a Republic Fair was kind of stupid (and still somewhat do but I get the idea behind it now), but it worked great as a setting for the bloodbath that followed. The action in this book was superb, and it kept me on the edge of my seat while reading. The politics and journey of some of the Jedi were interesting, and I grew to care about many of the characters despite the book having some of the same problems as Light of Jedi with an overabundance of POVs. See all my thoughts in my review!
There you have it! My ranking of all the Star Wars books released this year. What was your favorite Star Wars book this year? Let me know in the comments!