If you know me, or have happen to have accidentally read my review of Bloodline by Claudia Gray, you probably know that I’m a huge fan of Leia Organa. She knows what’s what, she kicks butt, and slays Hutts. Also, for like the last two months I’ve been telling Brock that there needs to be a Star Wars book about Bail Organa, his back story, how he got involved in all this etc. And while Leia: Princess of Alderaan didn’t exactly do that for me, it’s a step closer! I love Bail Organa, he always seems like such a cool, respectable guy, and he just up and adopts his friend’s baby immediately after her death, I mean COME ON! So anyhow, all that to say, I appreciated seeing a little more Bail in my SW book.
To date, I’ve been super impressed by Claudia Gray’s Star Wars books. Lost Stars is still one of the best SW new canon books I have read, and I adored Bloodline as well because, well, it’s all about Leia. So, naturally, I was super excited to read Leia: Princess of Alderaan, and in fact bought it during Force Friday II at target when they opened at midnight haha.
Princess of Alderaan opens on sixteen year old Leia’s Day of Demand ceremony, where she is beings the process of being the heir to crown of Alderaan (spoiler alert, she’s a princess) and takes us through the events of her essentially earning the title of princess, a feat that I think is pretty cool on it’s own. Leia has to prove she’s good enough to be the princess, that she is good enough to serve as Alderaan’s queen.
There are plenty of fun moments of references to events and characters the Star Wars fans will go “oooh shoot” at, or if you’re like me, will get super excited when Leia first encounters R2-D2 (even though he isn’t named, it’s a sassy too-smart-for-his-own-good blue astromech, so, yeah, it’s definitely the R2 I know and love).
Also, that moment when I figured out that one of the characters in this book, is going to be one of the new character in The Last Jedi (it took me until the last chapter for it to dawn on me) that moment was golden and effectively got me stoked to see The Last Jedi. Which is the point of these “Journey to” Star Wars books that come out before the new movies.
The biggest (and really, only) disappointment for me with this book is that Leia isn’t nearly as sassy and tough as I would have imagined she would be considering the events in this book occur merely 2 or so years prior to A New Hope. That isn’t to say that Leia isn’t smart, witty, and determined to do the right thing however. This novel is primarily about Leia wanting to do what she can for the worlds that have been screwed over by the Empire, leaving their inhabitants impoverished and struggling to survive, while also learning what it is to be an apprentice senator to the Senate. We see the more altruistic goodness of Leia’s heart, but also her quick witted ability to find some loopholes, beating the Empire at its own game.
Claudia Gray’s sixteen year old Leia just seemed a little juvenile and naive at times, but i suppose for a sixteen year old princess, that’s fair enough. And considering this happened in A New Hope:
I suppose we can allow Leia to seem a little juvenile at 16 😉
All in all, I was bound to love it either way, because I love the character Leia Organa, and even more so love the true rebel that played her, Carrie Fisher.
Sorry, not sorry.