I’m about half-way through Light of the Jedi and it’s absolutely one of the best Star Wars books I’ve ever read. It’s perfectly structured; effortlessly alternating between different lines of action, keeping you invested in all. I appreciate it letting the great hyperspace disaster unfold slowly: Charles Soule has a tendency to introduce characters, make them as likeable as possible then immediately kill them off, so the book already had high stakes from chapter 1/2; in chapter 7, things heat up massively; in chapter 14, things heat up massively AGAIN.
Most of all, I love how Charles Soule created a communal spirit, encapsulated by the Chancellor’s new slogan: “We are all the Republic”. I had heard some complaints that the book introduced a lot of characters in the start and it was slightly difficult to keep track, but surprisingly, I never had any problems - and introducing a whole host of new characters working on the same problem helps with this sense of community. Most of all, none of these characters are powerful solely as individuals, but mostly because they work as a team. Captain Bright needs his two junior officers, each with individual heroic moments, to succeed in a rescue mission; Joss and Pikka Adren only come up with a complete plan together; Bell Zettifar relies on his master’s teachings, but when Loden Greatstorm has to concentrate on the Force, he can only do so when Bell protects him from blaster fire. Even Avar Kriss, the most powerful Jedi of all, relies on a younger lieutenant to form a complete picture of the disaster.
I love Charles Soule’s writing style and the way he describes the Force as appearing in different ways to different people is so creative. The High Republic is an era that shows diversity is something to be welcomed, not feared, and that teamwork is what holds a Republic together. Usually in Star Wars, the galaxy is in a bad place - and sure, it’s in a spot of bother here too - but this era still represents what we on earth should strive to achieve.