Star Wars: Ahsoka
Author: E.K. Johnston
When I heard that a book would be written to continue the adventures of Anakin Skywalker’s former Padawan, Ahsoka Tano, I was ecstatic. I really liked watching the character they created for The Clone Wars animated series grow and wished I knew more about what happened after she left the Jedi. When Star Wars: Ahsoka was released, I knew I had to have it.
The book begins with a flashback glimpse as to what Ahsoka was up to after her departure from the Jedi Temple. It would seem she hadn’t entirely abandoned the war effort and was deploying on missions offered her by Anakin himself. Flash forward to sometime after Order 66 was activated and we find Ahsoka on Thabeska, working as a mechanic for a family of smugglers under the assumed name Ashla. She leaves when the Imperial presence on the planet decides it would be important to meet all recent transplants to the area.
Searching for an Outer Rim location where she can remain hidden from the Jedi purge, Ahsoka travels to the farming planet if Raada. Maintaining her false identity, Ahsoka now passes herself off as a machine specialist and repairs threshers, vaporators and more. Meanwhile, Ahsoka prepares for a day that is inevitable, setting up a secret hideaway in the hills on the off-chance she may have to evacuate her new home quickly. That day comes sooner than expected when the Imperials realize this Outer Rim territory would a perfect out of the way place to grow plants needed to feed their soldiers.
Instead of bugging and running immediately, Ahsoka decides to help her new friends rebel against occupation. Unfortunately, the farmers decide to up the ante on their own, planning a separate, larger and definitely more risky operation in conjunction with Ahsoka’s planned op. The results are disastrous with a number of deaths and injuries. Her friends only manage to escape with Ahsoka’s help and hole up in the caves that she helped stock, but in order to rescue them, Ahsoka must to reveal her Force abilities. Thus, to prevent putting them in more danger, Ahsoka decides to leave the planet, promising to return at a later date.
But with the Empire hunting all Force users and spreading their hold far across the galaxy, how will Ahsoka survive and how can she ever hope to return and rescue her friends on Raada?
When I learned that Ahsoka would be appearing on Star Wars: Rebels, I was actually surprised. I had always thought that something horrible must have happened to Ahsoka to help Anakin on his dark path. I was happy to learn that she had not only survived the Clone Wars, but Order 66 as well. It was interesting to watch how Ahsoka dealt with survivor's guilt and the possibility that everyone she had grown attached to (Jedi don’t have attachments, right…yeah, whatever) might be dead.
I enjoyed watching her try to maintain a low profile and fight her inherent desire to help those in need. She ends up losing that battle after all by joining the Rebellion and this book links the final moments of Ahsoka’s journey away from the Jedi Temple to her becoming the operative known as Fulcrum. I loved watching Ahsoka grow up on the show and I was happy to see Ahsoka grappling with her decisions, hoping that she was doing the right thing by trying to warn the parent of a force-sensitive child in an effort to keep her safe. I was happy to see that Ahsoka didn’t become a bitter soul at the hands of the Empire, but a positive force in helping the downtrodden fight back.
The storyline is exciting, despite the lack of action. Don’t get me wrong, there are action scenes here, but they are closer to the middle and end of the novel. This is more of a look inside the new person Ahsoka has become and her reasoning behind becoming Fulcrum. That being said, the book moves at a fast-paced and is captivating. I finished it in a couple of days, only because I couldn’t read the book while driving or working. And that cover – gorgeous!
Fans of The Clone Wars and Ahsoka will love reading Star Wars: Ahsoka if only to discover all that happened to Ahsoka after leaving the Temple. E.K. Johnston really captured the essence of Ahsoka and did a great job keeping me engrossed in everything and making me care about all of the other characters she introduced into the drama. Definitely a great read!