“I don’t turn toward the light because it means someday I’ll ‘win’ some sort of cosmic game. I turn toward it because it is the light.”
Claudia Gray is, quite simply, good at Star Wars. Peruse our content, listen to our podcast, or hang out in our Discord server or Facebook group, and you’ll quickly find that she’s a favorite of the Youtini team. Her Lost Stars is part of our collection of Five Foundational Books, and for many of us, her four Star Wars books each have spots high on our list of favorites in this new era of Canon.
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: if you think the “Young Adult” label means these books aren’t for you, you should really think again: The category only refers to the age range of the protagonist, not the reading level. And regardless of whether she’s portraying young pilots and princesses or Senators and Jedi Masters, Gray is a master at developing complex and nuanced new characters who immediately draw you into their plights; Lost Stars co-protagonists Thane Kyrell and Ciena Ree have, for many readers, occupied honored places in the pantheon of Expanded Universe characters.
Gray also excels at taking characters we’ve met on screen and capturing them in a way that not only honors their cinematic portrayal, but expands on our understanding of them. In the first chapter of Master and Apprentice, she so perfectly captures the voices of Qui-Gon and Obi Wan that you’ll be hard pressed not to hear Liam Neeson and Ewan McGregor in your head, and the way you view the pair’s relationship in The Phantom Menace will be forever changed. After Leia: Princess of Alderaan and Bloodline, Gray may as well be considered Leia Organa’s official biographer (if there were such a thing for fictional characters).
Her Star Wars work has also appeared in From a Certain Point of View, the collection of forty short stories released to celebrate the 40th anniversary of Episode IV. In it, she casts the relationship between Qui Gon and Obi Wan in an even more fascinating light in a short story entitled “Master and Apprentice.”
Fortunately for those of us who can’t get enough of Claudia Gray’s takes on the Star Wars universe, more is on the way. We don’t know much about “Project Luminous” yet, but since it includes Gray in addition to Charles Soule (Darth Vader: Dark Lord of the Sith), Daniel Jose Older (Last Shot), Justina Ireland (Lando’s Luck), and friend of Youtini, Cavan Scott (Dooku: Jedi Lost), we’re pretty sure we’re going to like it. At this point, we’re pretty sure we’ll like anything Star Wars from Claudia Gray, and if you want to join us, check out the following titles.
Our team is hard at work building out this collection. Stay tuned!
Books in this Collection
You may be familiar with the events of Star Wars’ Original Trilogy, but Lost Stars manages to re-explore its major plot points through the eyes of brand new characters Ciena Ree and Thane Kyrell, recruited to join the Rebel Alliance by Wedge Antilles. Along the way, it tells a love story that rivals that of Anakin and Padme.
Claudia Gray is among the elite Star Wars authors when it comes to crafting compelling stories. This book excels by giving a fresh take on the Star Wars story fans already know and love.
The reign of the Galactic Empire has reached the Outer Rim planet of Jelucan, where aristocratic Thane Kyrell and rural villager Ciena Ree bond over their love of flying. Enrolling at the Imperial Academy is nothing less than a dream come true for both of them. But Thane sours on the dream when he sees firsthand the horrific tactics the Empire uses to maintain its ironclad rule.
Bitter and disillusioned, he joins the fledgling Rebellion--putting Ciena in an unbearable position between her loyalty to the Empire and her love for the man she's known since childhood.
Now on opposite sides of the war, will these friends turned foes ever find a way to be together, or will duty tear them--and the galaxy--apart?
After the fall of the Empire, the Senate is split into the Populist and Centrist parties. Both profess the goal of restoring the Republic, though they are unable to set aside their opposing views. Tired of the pointless bickering within the Senate, Leia takes on one final mission before retiring. However, the mission proves to be bigger than she originally thought, inducing chaos and unveiling corruption.
Leave it to Claudia Gray to make politics exciting with action and drama! Bloodline is also an excellent gateway into the sequel trilogy, making this an essential read for fans interested in that era.
WITNESS THE BIRTH OF THE RESISTANCE
When the Rebellion defeated the Empire in the skies above Endor, Leia Organa believed it was the beginning to a lasting peace. But after decades of vicious infighting and partisan gridlock in the New Republic Senate, that hope seems like a distant memory.
Now a respected senator, Leia must grapple with the dangers that threaten to cripple the fledgling democracy—from both within and without. Underworld kingpins, treacherous politicians, and Imperial loyalists are sowing chaos in the galaxy. Desperate to take action, senators are calling for the election of a First Senator. It is their hope that this influential post will bring strong leadership to a divided galaxy.
As the daughter of Darth Vader, Leia faces with distrust the prospect of any one person holding such a powerful position—even when supporters suggest Leia herself for the job. But a new enemy may make this path Leia’s only option. For at the edges of the galaxy, a mysterious threat is growing. . . .
Leia: Princess of Alderaan
In keeping with Alderaanian tradition, Princess Leia undergoes her Day of Demand, where she claims her right as heir to the throne and sets forth how she will prove herself worthy. Yet things have been tense between her and her adopted parents, Queen Breha and Viceroy Bail Organa. As Leia - also a member of the Empire's Apprentice Legislature - undertakes her challenges of the Body, Mind, and Spirit, she learns more about her adoptive parents than she ever suspected and begins her own journey that will forever change the galaxy.
Claudia Gray excels at taking on the challenge of portraying one of the most important and beloved characters in the entire Star Wars mythos, and along the way treats us to compelling depictions of other on-screen characters as diverse as the former Captain Panaka, the future Vice Admiral Holdo, and Bail Organa. This book presents the not-to-be-missed backstory of how Leia became the fearless rebel we meet, and love, in the films.
Sixteen-year-old Princess Leia Organa faces the most challenging task of her life so far: proving herself in the areas of body, mind, and heart to be formally named heir to the throne of Alderaan. She's taking rigorous survival courses, practicing politics, and spearheading relief missions to worlds under Imperial control. But Leia has worries beyond her claim to the crown. Her parents, Breha and Bail, aren't acting like themselves lately; they are distant and preoccupied, seemingly more concerned with throwing dinner parties for their allies in the Senate than they are with their own daughter.
Determined to uncover her parents' secrets, Leia starts down an increasingly dangerous path that puts her right under the watchful eye of the Empire. And when Leia discovers what her parents and their allies are planning behind closed doors, she finds herself facing what seems like an impossible choice: dedicate herself to the people of Alderaan--including the man she loves--or to the galaxy at large, which is in desperate need of a rebel hero...
Master & Apprentice
The relationship between Jedi Master and Padawan is tumultuous as often as it is tight. Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi Wan Kenobi know this fact all too well. In the midst of their struggles to work together, Qui-Gon gets an offer that would allow them to part ways forever. However, after being sent on what may be their final mission together, Qui-Gon begins have visions that cast everyone’s future into doubt.
Claudia Gray once again does what she does best by delivering a moving, impactful story that delves into big questions surrounding the Force. She was entrusted with hugely important characters and uses them expertly.
An unexpected offer threatens the bond between Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi as the two Jedi navigate a dangerous new planet and an uncertain future.
A Jedi must be a fearless warrior, a guardian of justice, and a scholar in the ways of the Force. But perhaps a Jedi’s most essential duty is to pass on what they have learned. Master Yoda trained Dooku; Dooku trained Qui-Gon Jinn; and now Qui-Gon has a Padawan of his own. But while Qui-Gon has faced all manner of threats and danger as a Jedi, nothing has ever scared him like the thought of failing his apprentice.
Obi-Wan Kenobi has deep respect for his Master, but struggles to understand him. Why must Qui-Gon so often disregard the laws that bind the Jedi? Why is Qui-Gon drawn to ancient Jedi prophecies instead of more practical concerns? And why wasn’t Obi-Wan told that Qui-Gon is considering an invitation to join the Jedi Council—knowing it would mean the end of their partnership? The simple answer scares him: Obi-Wan has failed his Master.
When Jedi Rael Averross, another former student of Dooku, requests their assistance with a political dispute, Jinn and Kenobi travel to the royal court of Pijal for what may be their final mission together. What should be a simple assignment quickly becomes clouded by deceit, and by visions of violent disaster that take hold in Qui-Gon’s mind. As Qui-Gon’s faith in prophecy grows, Obi-Wan’s faith in him is tested—just as a threat surfaces that will demand that Master and apprentice come together as never before, or be divided forever.
No Stone Unturned
The High Republic Adventures Annual 2021
Is the first annual edition of the Star Wars: The High Republic Adventures comic series. It features stories from all five authors of the Star Wars: The High Republic multimedia project
Join all five High Republic authors, together in one book for the FIRST TIME EVER, as they each explore different corners of the galaxy during the height of the Galactic Republic. From daring Jedi, to the always adventurous Geode, and nefarious Nihil, The High Republic Adventures Annual has it all!
The High Republic: Into the Dark
The High Republic: Into the Dark is a young-adult and part of the first wave in Phase 1 of the multimedia project Star Wars: The High Republic.
Padawan Reath Silas is being sent from the cosmopolitan galactic capital of Coruscant to the undeveloped frontier—and he couldn’t be less happy about it. He’d rather stay at the Jedi Temple, studying the archives. But when the ship he’s traveling on is knocked out of hyperspace in a galactic-wide disaster, Reath finds himself at the center of the action. The Jedi and their traveling companions find refuge on what appears to be an abandoned space station. But then strange things start happening, leading the Jedi to investigate the truth behind the mysterious station, a truth that could end in tragedy….
The High Republic: The Fallen Star
The High Republic: The Fallen Star is a canon novel and part of the third wave in Phase 1 of the multimedia project Star Wars: The High Republic.
In this gripping sequel to Star Wars: The Rising Storm, the light of the Jedi faces its darkest hour.
Time and again, the vicious raiders known as the Nihil have sought to bring the golden age of the High Republic to a fiery end. Time and again, the High Republic has emerged battered and weary, but victorious thank to its Jedi protectors—and there is no monument to their cause grander than the Starlight Beacon.
Hanging like a jewel in the Outer Rim, the Beacon embodies the High Republic at the apex of its aspirations: a hub of culture and knowledge, a bright torch against the darkness of the unknown, and an extended hand of welcome to the furthest reaches of the galaxy. As survivors and refugees flee the Nihil's attacks, the Beacon and its crew stand ready to shelter and heal.
The grateful Knights and Padawans of the Jedi Order stationed there finally have a chance to recover—from the pain of their injuries and the grief of their losses. But the storm they thought had passed still rages; they are simply caught in its eye. Marchion Ro, the true mastermind of the Nihil, is preparing his most daring attack yet—one designed to snuff out the light of the Jedi.
The High Republic: Quest of the Jedi
The High Republic: Quest of the Jedi
Is a one-shot comic and part of Phase II of the multimedia project.
On the ancient world of Angcord, the Force works in mysterious ways…
When a pair of Jedi arrive on the mysterious world, seeking ancient artifacts of the Force, the quickly find more than they were bargaining for.
But just what is the mysterious Echo Stone, and what does its existence mean for the continued survival of all those who call Angcord home?