Alright, everyone, let’s be real: the Mouse is flooding the place with Star Wars. We got comics. We got cartoons. We got books. I’m swimming in it all until my fingers get all pruny, and I’m not drowning but waving. Bust out your best swimmin’ suit and leap on in. The water’s fine. (Okay, okay, it’s of dubious quality in some spots. But we’ll get to *cough*HeirtotheJedi*cough* and *ahem*PrincessLeia*ahem* another day.)
We are gathered here today, in this galactic swimmin’ hole, to fling praise and admiring glances at a certain Moff. A certain GRAND MOFF, if you will.
People, meet Tarkin.
Remember the first time we met Grand Moff Tarkin? He silenced a gaggle of bickering generals with nothing but his spare presence. He demonstrated a keen (if imperfect) understanding of fear as tool and bludgeon. And he told Darth Vader, the guy who’s favorite hobby was idly Force-choking top-ranking officials, what to do.
Let’s go over that last one again: Grand Moff Tarkin was the only person, besides the Emperor, to tell Darth Vader what to do. He did it with annoyance – he sharply commanded – and Vader immediately obeyed.
Grand Admiral Tarkin was a badass. A competent, Sith-controlling, hawk-faced badass. Cleverness was his art, and the Imperial Military was his very large brush. You would expect any book purporting to cover any part of his life to be the same – clever, competent, badass. How does James Luceno’s novel, being the latest addition to the new Star Wars canon measure up?