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After a collection expanding the universe of Star Wars: Legacy, we are now back on track with the further adventures of Cade Skywalker. In Claws of the Dragon, Cade attempts to rescue the Jedi he turned in back during Broken, only to be captured himself by Darth Krayt. Krayt knows he cannot kill Cade yet (he has that whole healing ability the dark lord needs so much), so he slowly attempts to lure him to the Dark Side.
This volume has a lot of adventure and is very Star Wars-y. A lot of it reminded me of the best elements of The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi mixed together into a new narrative. From Jedi, you have the temptation to the Dark Side Cade faces and from Empire, you have Cade’s friends and other allies attempting to rescue him before his is killed or turned. The really strange thing about all of this is that storytellers Ostrander and Duursema have this story take place over a number of weeks, but they keep the momentum going to where this feels that everything happens over the course of a few days. I loved that they were able to do this, because it gave the impression of a ticking clock.
Claws of the Dragon also revealed a lot about two of main characters, specifically that of Darth Krayt. Personally, I think it was a smart move to have Krayt around as a former Jedi during the events of the prequel and original trilogies. It gives him a connection to those earlier events and characters and allows him bigger “oomph” as a character himself as opposed to some other guy who just happens to pop-up. It continues to show that the galaxy is cleaning up the mess from the events depicted in the prequels.
Nyna Calixte is the other character this collection really develops. Not only do we learn that she has an ex-husband and daughter (both bitter at her), but that she might, in actually, be Cade’s mother (which also makes her her own intelligence agent in Morrigan Corde). Trippy.
Not everything was great, however. While I appreciate the universe building going on in this series, I really feel as if there are way too many characters to really keep track of. The series was doing pretty good there at first, but the cast of characters keep expanding, especially within our main hero’s group. The story is balanced just fine, but it is tough for me to really care about some of these other people just popping up all over the place. I really hope we are tapped out for the time being.
Speaking of not caring, does anyone else not care about the remaining Jedi? For most of this adventure, they were hiding on Ossus. They might be dead now (though, I doubt it) when the Jedi temple was destroyed. I just don’t care about any of them, and I am not sure they are adding anything substantial to the story at large.
Still, those are minor issues. Claws of the Dragon is the story I was really looking forward to in the previous volume. Now that our hero and villain have had their first, true encounter, I am looking forward to where things will go from here.
The story leads us to believe that Calixte and Corde are the same person. How does that work, especially since Calxite was the one who brought the Sith in league with the Empire before the war? As an intelligence agent, wouldn’t she know better than to trust the Sith? Then again, perhaps all of her actions are there to make up for this wrong which cursed the galaxy. This also begs the question, which one is the real person and which one is the cover?
We meet Gunn Yage, an imperial pilot and Calixte’s daughter. She was trying to shoot down Cade’s ship. Cade is her half-brother. I can’t wait to see the reactions fly with they learn of their connection to one another.
Is it me, or did R2-D2 completely disappear midway through this story? I’m all for focusing on new characters, but why introduce him if he’s just going to be pushed to the side?