Star Wars: Tales of the Jedi: Redemption
Writers: Kevin J. Anderson
Art: Chris Gossett
Cover Art: Alexander McDaniel
Distributed By: Dark Horse Comics
Reviewed by Melissa Minners
Some time ago, I received Star Wars: Tales of the Jedi: Redemption as a Christmas present. I donít remember asking for this particular trade paperback, a collection of issues 1-5 of the comic book series of the same name, but I was happy all the same. Someone had realized my love for Star Wars and had bought me something different and exciting. I couldnít wait to read it. I just reread it after all these years and I still love the present just as much as the first time I opened the cover.
Redemption takes place a decade after the Sith Wars, a horrific battle that pit Jedi against Jedi and caused much devastation throughout the Republic. The self-proclaimed Dark Lord of the Sith, Exar Kun, has been destroyed in the Massassi temples on Yavin. Ulic Qel-Droma, former Jedi warrior turned Chief Lieutenant to Exar Kun, has been stripped of his powers by Nomi Sunrider, Jedi leader. Nomiís own daughter, Vima, has shown signs of strength in the force, but her training has been neglected as Nomi Sunrider prepares for a great convocation of Jedi in which many decisions will be made about the Jediís path in the future.
While Ulic seeks isolation in an effort to escape the horrors of his former life, Vima Sunrider seeks him out for guidance and training. Others are looking for him, tooÖthose who believe that being stripped of his Force powers is not enough punishment for the pain he has caused them. Will Ulic relent to Vimaís persistence, or will he turn her away seeking to further isolate himself from a life that caused tremendous pain for himself and those he loved? Will Ulic Qel-Droma ever find redemption?
I had first read about Exar Kun and Ulic Qel-Droma in Kevin J. Andersonís Jedi Academy Trilogy and I was incredibly intrigued. I wanted to know more about the Sith Wars and the history of the Jedi dating back long before Anakin Skywalker ever touched a podracer. Now, sitting before me was a trade paperback that shed some light on at least one small part of that history. Happily, Redemption is written by the man who first introduced the characters to me Ė the one person who could perfectly do them justice.
Chris Gossettís artistry adds just the right flare to an already intriguing storyline, bringing to life the characters I had previously only been able to picture in my mind. His art added to Andersonís writing created a magic that captured my attention from cover to cover. I was so invested in all of the characters by the end of the first fifth of the story that I couldnít put Redemption down until I found out what would happen to them. Thus, Redemption was a very fast read for me.
This story teaches readers that in order to be forgiven for your mistakes, you must first learn to forgive yourself. Peace will not come if you hide from your problems. You must face them head on, understand your mistakes and make an effort to move on from them, taking a more positive path in life. While readers expect that Ulic Qel-Droma is the characters in need of redemption and release from his inner pain, they soon discover that he is not alone.
Included with this incredibly captivating story is the cover art created by Alexander McDaniel for each of the five comics in this series. Each cover is a colorful stand-alone piece of art found in its own special section in the back of the trade paperback.
If the possibility of learning more about the history of the Jedi before Anakin Skywalker times doesnít intrigue you, then perhaps this is not a tale for you. However, with such a well-written story combined with great artwork, I canít see why any Star Wars fan would want to pass up on Star Wars: Tales of the Jedi: Redemption.
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