Sunday, April 19, 2009

Clone Wars by Karen Traviss

Star Wars already has a long history of movie-to-book adaptions, starting with the very first trilogy. You can read more about them in an earlier blog post.

This trend continued with the Prequel trilogy, and now with a book adaption of The Clone Wars.

This is of course something that I call genre fiction. Although the definition more accurately describes a specific genre (see here for an explanation), however it can be more specifically applied, within a specific genre (like here, science fiction) of a shared setting or in this case a movie spin-off novel line. Genre fiction is rarely high fiction, but tends to be escapist and (for me) entertaining. And there is nothing wrong with this, since sometimes being entertained is more important than some new insight in the human condition.

Karen Travess is fast becoming my favorite Star Wars writer. Her books tend to be lucid and eventful, without wallowing in the action ("war porn" for lack of a better term). Furthermore, the detail she gives to the characters really allows one, in my opinion, to empathize or at least better understand the motivations.

I heard a few bad things about the Clone Wars movie, so I chose not to watch it. I have been enjoying, on the other hand, the Clone Wars TV series. The novel then is a happy medium. And it was pretty decent.

It's not terribly long (around 250pgs) which felt just about right to encapsule the events of the movie (which in the end read more like an extended Clone Wars episode...and perhaps that was the point). Furthermore, the characterization of Ahsoka (no, not the Indian Emperor Ahsoka the Great...) made her less of my fears of a teen-age girl and more along the lines of what a Padawan should be. Furthermore, some of the little details helping to define her based on her Togrutan ancestry were nice details.

If you haven't seen the movie, and like Star Wars, pick it up. If you saw the movie and disliked it, pick it up since you might like this more...

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