When The Mandalorian, the first live-action Star Wars TV show, was announced, Star Wars fans were hesitant. They knew the creative team behind the project had a good track record, but how would a decades-long space opera translate to the small screen? Those fears were summarily squashed at the end of the first episode with the introduction of (spoiler alert) The Child, aka Baby Yoda. Suddenly, The Mandalorian wasn’t just a western set in space. Now it was Lone Wolf and Cub with blasters and space travel.
If you haven’t watched The Mandalorian yet—check out one of our Rokus, which includes a Disney+ subscription. Now that season two is over, you may have a Star Wars shaped gap in your life. Luckily, there is a lot of Star Wars content out there to fill your time with! Here are my top five recommendations.
Thrawn by Timothy Zahn
Admiral Thrawn has been a staple in Star Wars fiction since the 90s. Set before The Mandalorian, Thrawn by Timothy Zahn covers Thrawn’s rise through the imperial ranks in the Galactic Empire. Follow the events that launched the blue-skinned, red-eyed master of military strategy and lethal warfare into the highest realms of power and infamy as Thrawn rises to Admiral.
Lost Stars by Claudia Gray
Set before and after the original trilogy movies, Lost Stars is the Star Wars take on the classic Romeo and Juliet trope. Both Thane Kyrell and Ciena Ree were raised on an outworld planet and dreamed of flying. When the two enroll in the Imperial Academy to become fighter pilots for the Empire, their friendship is tested after Thane witnesses the horrors of war. Thane then decides to join the Rebellion, placing him and Ciena on opposing sides. Ciena is then forced to make a choice between friendship, love and duty.
From a Certain Point of View Anthology
When Star Wars: A New Hope was first released in 1977, part of its appeal was that the world it presented felt alive. Landspeeders and starships were dirty. Droids broke down. And it was filled with cool, weird and really weird background characters. In celebration of Star Wars’ 40th anniversary, this book shines the spotlight on those unsung weirdos, heroes and villains with a unique, new anthology. Star Wars: From a Certain Point of View, brings together more than 40 authors of 40 stories, each told from the perspective of background characters from A New Hope.
Darth Vader: Dark Lord of the Sith by Charles Soule & Artist Giuseppe Camuncoli
Beginning during the events of Revenge of the Sith directly after Darth Vader discovers that his wife, Padmé Amidala, has died, the series chronicles Vader going on various missions across the galaxy, all the while hunting the few surviving Jedi alongside his band of dark side apprentices known as the Inquisitorius.
Star Wars: Alphabet Squadron by Alexander Freed
Alphabet Squadron is set after Return of the Jedi. With the Emperor dead and his final weapon destroyed, the Imperial Army is in disarray. In the aftermath, Yrica Quell is just one of thousands of defectors from her former cause living in a deserters’ shantytown—until she is selected to join Alphabet Squadron. Cobbled together from an eclectic assortment of pilots and starfighters. Like Yrica, each is a talented pilot struggling to find their place in a changing galaxy. Their mission: track down and destroy the mysterious Shadow Wing, a lethal force of TIE fighters exacting bloody, reckless vengeance in the twilight of their reign.