This was a volume that I hadn’t intended on reviewing, but once I was a few pages in, I knew I had to write a post for it. This graphic novel is so excellent for the whole Star Wars universe, and as a female fan, I was in love with the cast of characters in this.
The volume picks up where A New Hope ended, showing that Leia is not one to sit around and let people tell her what to do (which most of us knew already anyway). The Rebel forces want Leia to stay on Yavin since she has such a huge bounty on her head, but Leia is still mourning the loss of Alderaan and wants to do anything she can to preserve her culture and surviving Alderaanians. Leia teams up with Evaan, a fighter pilot in the Rebel forces, to search the galaxy for survivors of Alderaan’s demise. Though they find some, there’s always trouble to come.
I loved the entire team of women who carried out Leia’s mission, and it is such an amazing thing for female fans to see more representation in the Star Wars Universe. Previously (before The Force Awakens was even announced), the one issue I had with Star Wars is that there weren’t enough women who played significant roles in the (movie) plot lines. Growing up, there was Leia and Padmé, who are both excellent in their own ways, but I wanted more. Reading this graphic novel was an answer to my wishes, and it seems that the needed change is here. I would absolutely love to read more about these characters in spinoff graphic novels. They are all unique women with different backgrounds and viewpoints, and play many higher roles in this story. I was incredibly impressed with this graphic novel, and I wish this was something I had when I was younger and looking for more role models in the Star Wars Universe.
In other aspects of graphic novel storytelling, this one passed many other tests of how I judge my enjoyment of a volume. The art style was one that I wasn’t sure about at first, but the further into the action I got, the more it grew on me and I could appreciate it. All of the characters are distinct from each other, and with a cast of women, I was glad to see that there weren’t unrealistic “sexy fighter” poses that can be in this kind of medium. The action was played out well, which can be difficult to do on page with limited space, and the dialogue wasn’t cheesy or over the top.
The plot itself was excellent as well, especially regarding the aftermath of Alderaan’s destruction, which really isn’t addressed that much in A New Hope. It also gives a glimpse of the pace that things had to move after the ending of the first movie, being that the Imperial forces are still not fully defeated, only the Death Star was. The background of Alderaan’s culture and glimpses into Leia’s childhood are aspects that I really enjoyed as additions to this story and the Star Wars canon as a whole.
Overall, if you’re even the slightest Star Wars fan or are craving more female-led comics, you should definitely pick this volume up. This was definitely the read that I needed today to pick my spirits up, and I’m sure it’s one I’ll come back to again when I’m missing the Star Wars Universe.