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How to Get into the ‘Star Wars’ Extended Universe


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Whether it be the Legends line of stories or the current day continuity of Star Wars stories, all of it is honestly very good and you as a reader should at some point within your journey through this galaxy far far away explore those different facets of these stories in some capacity.

But for people who want to start experiencing more of the Star Wars universe through novels, comics or audiobooks it can truly be daunting to figure out where one might want to start.

Read: Obi-Wan and The Hero’s Journey – A Star Wars Story that Delivers in Every Way

Does one travel to an era long before the birth of the chosen one (Anakin Skywalker) where worlds are still unfolding and the Jedi are at their absolute peak? Or maybe discovering more of the tragedy of Darth Plagueis the Wise? No matter the planet, era, character or type of fan that you are, there is undoubtedly a book set throughout the Star Wars universe that will enthrall you with its tales.

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For one, I — your author of this article — am ADHD and have difficulties when it comes to reading. Thus, making an enticing book all the more important to prevent that attention loss, where as graphic novels are easier for me to focus on. But when a Star Wars story is enticing, it almost doesn’t even matter what format it comes in for me. The main piece of advice when it comes to getting into the extended universe is to just enjoy your time.

Now, here is where the advice starts

You might be in a book store staring at the shelves of Star Wars novels or comics, wanting to grab something (or everything) but feel intimidated by the sheer amount of content on the shelves, let alone the fact that some books say it’s “Book 1 of” some saga or something along that line.

While this can feel daunting there is an easy solution to such a predicament.

Put the novels you seem interested in together, see which ones are continuations of bigger stories, put those back, then pick the character/characters you are familiar with and just love, and then buy that book.

Yes, it is actually, just that easy. In my humble opinion and experience starting off with a character whom you love within the Star Wars universe is pretty much enough, and from there look into other stories that the character is in, but more importantly what other books that author might have written.

Then, let the force flow through you

From there you’ll most likely branch out to different forms of stories and figure out what kind of Star Wars stories you like.

Example of such a scenario is that you might love Obi-Wan Kenobi, and maybe that Kenobi series sparked the flame of passion to want more Obi-Wan in your life. But not just any Obi-Wan content, fresh Kenobi content.

So rather than rewatching the prequels, Clone Wars or the Kenobi series you decide to give a Star Wars books a try. That provides you with 2 options, either Master & Apprentice by Claudia Gray or the Legends Kenobi novel by John Jackson.

Let’s say you pick-up Master & Apprentice and you loved it (I know I did) and now you want more. From there you can now branch out to options such as Brotherhood (a beautiful continuation of Master & Apprentice), the upcoming Star Wars: Padawan book, the audiobook Jedi Lost (for Qui-Gon Jinn and other characters in Master & Apprentice), the comic mini-series Star Wars: Obi-Wan and Anakin and Dark Disciple (having guest appearance from Obi-Wan that also further develops his character.)

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These are all merely books that can branch out the characters in the book. Then going off books that Claudia Gray has written, it now opens up options to the High Republic era with books like Into the Dark or Fallen Star. Then there’s amazing novels that focus on known characters such as Leia through books like Leia: Princess of Alderaan, Bloodline and books set in the original trilogy era like Lost Stars.

What about comics

As for the comic books, the best method for choosing where to start is the same process as choosing the books.

The most vital aspect of reading the comics however, is to figure out which writer you like the most since consistency in stories throughout Star Wars comics follow more so the writers than the characters or series.

However, if finding a character that appeals to you seems difficult for a comic book series then here are some good books to get you started: Star Wars: Darth Vader Vol. 1: Imperial Machine, Star Wars: Darth Maul – Son of Dathomir, Star Wars Vol. 1: Skywalker Strikes, and Star Wars: the Rise of Kylo Ren.

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Hopefully this article has been able to help some people figure out how to get started with the Star Wars extended universe with the novels or comic books.

But if you are an individual looking for recommendations about Star Wars novels then the Nerd Initiative will soon feature reviews of Star Wars books so that those interested can gain more of an idea of whether or not a book will be for them.

All rights reserved – Disney, Lucasfilm, Penguin Random House and Del Ray Books

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