Kylo Ren
A Youtini Collection

Star Wars books you should read if you like
Kylo Ren

This is some text inside of a div block.
Kylo Ren
Let the past die. Kill it if you have to.

         He's dark. He's powerful. He's a bit unhinged. He commands armies but whines in his room to the mutilated helmet of his dead grandfather he never knew. Kylo Ren is the synthesis of the broodiness of Anakin Skywalker and the ominousness of Darth Vader. His backstory is both tragic and mysterious. Originally conceived of as “the Jedi killer,” he leads the Knights of Ren and uprooted Luke’s Jedi academy by either converting or killing his classmates. We want to see him succeed and do the right thing, but it's hard to hope for the best after he eliminated one someone who felt like family to us—his own father, Han Solo.

          The magic of what makes Kylo Ren work is exactly this dilemma and so much more. When he was introduced to fans in the months leading up to Episode VII, reactions varied. Some complained about the crackling crimson cross-hilt lightsaber. Others marveled. Some said the mask was derivative of Darth Revan. Resoundingly, it was hard not to think the obvious: it's a cool character design, but how will he compare to the single most legendary villain in the history of pop culture, Darth Vader? As it turns out, this was front-and-center in the minds of the filmmakers as well. For Kylo Ren himself, this represents his single greatest doubt. In one of the quieter moments of The Force Awakens, he voices his indecision and his "pull to the light." This culminates in Rey turning the tables on her interrogator in the movie's second half, reading Ben Solo's mind and giving words to what we were all thinking, "You're afraid  that you'll never be as strong as Darth Vader!" Therein lies the stroke of brilliance. Kylo dreads being a pretender. He wants to establish himself as a true dark side powerhouse, but standing in the way is the Resistance, Rey, his own inner doubts, his parents, and his master, and even his own legacy.

          Kylo Ren’s story is truly one of the most compelling elements of the Sequel Trilogy. He had a tragic turn to the dark side involving a perceived betrayal by his parents and some sort of manipulative targeting from Supreme Leader Snoke. There’s still so much of his story yet to be explored. But The Last Jedi gave us a series of flashbacks show his rocky relationship with his uncle, Luke. His agenda is hard to pinpoint, exactly. On the one hand, he wants to prove himself and establish his evil prowess, but on the other, he doesn’t follow a traditional villainous trajectory. He eliminated his own master, Snoke, and invited Ray to join him in ruling the galaxy. At the end of Episode VIII, he becomes the new Supreme Leader of the First Order, but has he truly erased his pull to the light?

          While the wealth of Kylo Ren stories are yet to be told (an exciting idea!), here are a few recommendations. He will feature most prominent in an upcoming mini-series from none other than Charles Soule, The Rise of Kylo Ren. The author described it as “from Ben to Ren.” It looks to tell the story of leaving Luke’s Jedi academy and becoming the villain we love to hate. You’ll also want to check out two recently released comics in the Age of Resistance series, Snoke #1 in particular, for a young Ben being trained by the Supreme Leader in the dark side cave on Dagobah. Empire’s End shows baby Ben. Bloodline features Leia in the expanse between ROTJ and TFA, with glimpses at how an adolescent Ben might receive the surprise news that Darth Vader was his grandfather. We’re not willing to let the past die with Kylo, not yet anyway. Additional recommendations if you’re a fan of Kylo Ren’s persona include a taste of Soule’s best comics writing in his Darth Vader series, a tour of the dark side with Darth Plagueis, an ambitious and eager-to-prove-himself Darth Maul in Shadow Hunter, and Jacen Solo’s first steps down the dark path in Legacy of the Force: Betrayal. We’re anxious to see what the future holds for Kylo, but there’s plenty to read in the meantime.



This reading guide is
Coming Soon
Our team is hard at work building out this collection. Stay tuned!

Books in this Collection

The Youtini Collections team has hand-selected the books in this collection
Canon
Canon
Single Issue Comic

Age Of Resistance: Kylo Ren

Written by
Tom Taylor
Artwork by
Leonard Kirk
The son of smuggler Han Solo and Princess Leia Organa, Ben Solo was once one of the most promising of the new generation of Jedi. That is, until his uncle, Jedi Master Luke Skywalker, sensed the dark side in Ben. Since then, Ben has abandoned the ways of the Jedi. As Kylo Ren of the villainous First Order, he now walks a new path....
Canon
Canon
Single Issue Comic

The Rise of Kylo Ren 1

Written by
Charles Soule
Artwork by
Will Sliney
Legendary Marvel Star Wars writer Charles Soule finally fills in some gaps with Ben Solo's fall to the dark side. He describes the series as “from Ben to Ren.” It tells the story of leaving Luke’s Jedi academy and donning the dark helmet as an enforcer in the First Order.
Young Ben Solo is legendary Jedi Luke Skywalker's most promising pupil. As the son of Rebel Alliance heroes Leia Organa and Han Solo, as well as Luke's own nephew, Ben has the potential to be a great force for light in the galaxy. But the Skywalker family legacy casts a long shadow, the currents of the dark side run deep, and Darth Vader's blood runs in Ben's veins. Voices call from both his past and his future, telling him who he must be. He will shatter, he will be reforged, his destiny will be revealed. Snoke awaits. The Knights of Ren await. Ben Solo's path to his true self begins here.
Canon
Canon
Single Issue Comic

Age Of Resistance: Supreme Leader Snoke

Written by
Tom Taylor
Artwork by
Leonard Kirk
This exceptional one-shot serves as the one and only glimpse to date of Supreme Leader Snoke training a young Kylo Ren. They go to an infamous locale for Star Wars fans—the swamps of Dagobah—to a mysterious Force cave where Kylo must do battle with none other than Luke Skywalker. . .
THE DEVIL'S APPRENTICE! SUPREME LEADER SNOKE'S brutal training of KYLO REN begins. Will the sadistic Snoke break his tormented protégé? Or has he underestimated the son of HAN and LEIA?
Canon
Canon
Graphic Novel

Darth Vader: Dark Lord of the Sith Vol. 1 (Trade Paperback)

Written by
Charles Soule
Artwork by
Giuseppe Camuncoli, Jimmy Cheung
Charles Soule achieved true greatness with his run on Darth Vader. Conceived of as “baby Vader,” Soule sought to pick up the story of the newly armored Dark Lord directly after Revenge of the Sith. He hasn’t been Darth Vader very long; in fact, at the beginning of the story, he’s still more Anakin Skywalker than Sith Lord. This is the story of how Vader finished becoming Vader. The story arcs of Darth Vader: Dark Lord of the Sith tell crucial moments in Vader’s history in original and epically creative ways. The first volume tells of his quest to create his own red-bladed lightsaber, taking advantage of the new canon lore regarding taking a Jedi’s lightsaber and conforming the crystal to his will by “bleeding” the crystal. From there, we find Vader on a mission to find the remaining Jedi on his hit-list who escaped Order 66—including an incredibly compelling clash with none other than the Jedi librarian Jocasta Nu. The final arc is the continuation of Vader’s quest from Episode III to save Padmé from dying, as he looks to open a portal to Rebels’ World between Worlds to bring her back to life. It’s also the story of the origin of Vader’s Castle, introduced in Rogue One. Not to mention the introduction of another Sith, Lord Momin! This series is one you don’t want to miss.

From acclaimed writer Charles Soule comes a brand-new, exhilarating series exploring Darth Vader's early history. Picking up directly where Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith ends, follow Vader as he receives his legendary red lightsaber and witness Vader's rise to power as a Dark Lord of the Sith!

Legends
Legends
Adult Novel

Dark Lord: The Rise of Darth Vader

Written by
James Luceno
Artwork by
A tie-in to the Star Wars: Dark Forces and Star Wars: Jedi Knight games, this novella kicks off a trilogy and features notable characters like Thrawn, Lando Calrissian, and Mon Mothma while providing an early EU example of the plot to steal the Death Star plans.

Throughout the galaxy, it was believed that Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker–the Chosen One–had died on Coruscant during the siege of the Jedi Temple. And, to some extent, that was true. Anakin was dead.

From the site of Anakin Skywalker’s last stand–on the molten surface of the planet Mustafar, where he sought to destroy his friend and former master, Obi-Wan Kenobi–a fearsome specter in black has risen. Once the most powerful Knight ever known to the Jedi Order, he is now a disciple of the dark side, a lord of the dreaded Sith, and the avenging right hand of the galaxy’s ruthless new Emperor. Seduced, deranged, and destroyed by the machinations of the Dark Lord Sidious, Anakin Skywalker is dead . . . and Darth Vader lives.

Word of the events that created him–the Jedi Council’s failed mutiny against Supreme Chancellor Palpatine, the self-crowned Emperor’s retaliatory command to exterminate the Jedi Order, and Anakin’s massacre of his comrades and Masters in the Jedi Temple–has yet to reach all quarters. On the Outer Rim world of Murkhana, Jedi Masters Roan Shryne and Bol Chatak and Padawan Olee Starstone are leading a charge on a Separatist stronghold, unaware that the tide, red with Jedi blood, has turned suddenly against them.

When the three narrowly elude execution–and become the desperate prey in a hunt across space–it’s neither clone soldiers, nor the newly deployed stormtroopers, nor even the wrath of the power-hungry Emperor himself they must fear most. The deadliest threat rests in the hideously swift and lethal crimson lightsaber of Darth Vader–behind whose brooding mask lies a shattered heart, a poisoned soul, and a cunning, twisted mind hell-bent on vengeance.

For the handful of scattered Jedi, survival is imperative if the light side of the Force is to be protected and the galaxy somehow, someday reclaimed. Yet more important still is the well-being of the twin infants, Leia and Luke Skywalker, the children of Anakin and his doomed bride, Padmé Amidala. Separated after Padmé’s death, they must be made safe at all costs, lest the hope they represent for the future be turned to horror by the new Sith regime–and the unspeakable power of the dark side.

Canon
Canon
Adult Novel

Bloodline

Written by
Claudia Gray
Artwork by

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. . . .

Legends
Legends
Adult Novel

Betrayal

Written by
Aaron Allston
Artwork by
Jacen Solo is one of the most well-developed characters in the Legends timeline. His experiences in the hands of Vergere and the Yuuzahn Vong changed him irrevocably. He saved the galaxy once, but to what lengths is he willing to go in order to save it again? Betrayal takes his story in a new direction, reintroducing a villain from the original Marvel comics, Lumiya, who guides Jacen along a dark path. All the while, Jacen is serving as the Jedi teacher to his nephew, Ben Skywalker, and the Skywalker and Solo clans might be torn apart along family lines. It would be helpful to have read the New Jedi Order before starting Legacy of the Force, but we realize that's a tall order. At the very least, you'll want to familiarize yourself with the main characters and with Jacen's torture at the hands of Vergere in Traitor before diving in.

This is the era of Luke Skywalker's legacy; the Jedi Master has unified the order into a cohesive group of powerful Jedi Knights. But as the new era begins, planetary interests threaten to disrupt this time of relative peace, and Luke is plagued with visions of an approaching darkness. Evil is rising again—out of the best intentions—and it looks as if the legacy of the Skywalkers may come full circle. Honor and duty will collide with friendship and blood ties as the Skywalker and Solo clans find themselves on opposing sides of an explosive conflict with potentially devastating repercussions for both families, for the Jedi order and for the entire galaxy.

When a mission to uncover an illegal missile factory on the planet Adumar ends in a violent ambush—from which Jedi Knight Jacen Solo and his protégé and cousin, Ben Skywalker, narrowly escape with their lives—it's the most alarming evidence yet that sparks of political unrest are threatening to ignite into total rebellion. The governments of numerous worlds are chafing under the strict regulations of the Galactic Alliance, and diplomatic efforts to enforce compliance are failing. Fearing the worst, the Alliance readies a preemptive display of military might in a bid to bring the rogue worlds to heel before an uprising erupts. The designated target of this exercise: planet Corellia—renowned for the brash independence and renegade spirit that have made its favorite son, Han Solo, a legend.

Something of a rogue himself, Jacen is nevertheless duty bound as a Jedi to stand with his uncle, Jedi Master Luke Skywalker, on the side of the Galactic Alliance. But when the wary Corellians launch a counterstrike, the Alliance's show of force—and a secret mission to disable Corellia's crucial Centerpoint Station—give way to an armed skirmish. Once the smoke clears, the battle lines are drawn. Now the specter of full scale war looms between a growing cadre of defiant planets and the Galactic Alliance that some fear is becoming a new Empire. And even as both sides struggle to find a diplomatic solution mysterious acts of treachery and sabotage threaten peace efforts at every turn.

Determined to root out those behind the mayhem, Jacen follows a trail of cryptic clues to a dark rendezvous with the most shocking of revelations—while Luke grapples with something even more troubling: dream visions of a shadowy figure whose Force power and ruthlessness remind him of Darth Vader—a lethal enemy who strikes like a dark spirit on a mission of doom. An agent of evil who, if Luke's visions come to pass, will bring untold pain to the Jedi Master—and to the entire galaxy.

Legends
Legends
Adult Novel

Darth Plagueis

Written by
James Luceno
Artwork by

Did you ever hear the tragedy of Darth Plagueis the Wise? It's a sprawling tale that establishes several important origin stories for characters fans know well. Readers learn how Plagueis seduced Palpatine to the dark side and how their alliance led to the Sith apprentice’s ultimate betrayal of his master. This is how darkness truly began to rise.

Darth Plagueis: Like all Sith Lords before him, he craves absolute power. But like no Sith Lord ever, he possesses the ultimate power—over life and death.

Darth Sidious: In secret he masters the power of the dark side, while publicly climbing to the highest government office.

One desires to rule supreme; the other dreams of living forever. Together, they will destroy the Jedi and rule the galaxy. Unless merciless Sith tradition becomes their undoing. . . .

Legends
Legends
Adult Novel

Darth Maul: Shadow Hunter

Written by
Michael Reaves
Artwork by

Plans for the Trade Federation’s blockade of Naboo is at risk of being compromised, so Darth Sidious sends his skilled apprentice to Coruscant to take care of the problem. Completely loyal to his master, Darth Maul vows to crush any threat that is prone to delivering their secret agenda to the Jedi.

Shadow Hunter is a spectacular display of a Sith apprentice’s devotion to their master. Darth Maul had been trained by Darth Sidious since he was a child, and it shows in the way he hunts his prey and fuels on his anger to finish the job.

For the infamous, power-hungry Sith, beholden to the dark side, the time has come to rise again.

After years of waiting in the shadows, Darth Sidious is taking the first step in his master plan to bring the Republic to its knees. Key to his scheme are the Neimoidians of the Trade Federation. Then one of his Neimoidian contacts disappears, and Sidious does not need his Force-honed instincts to suspect betrayal. He orders his apprentice, Darth Maul, to hunt the traitor down.

But he is too late. The secret has already passed into the hands of information broker Lorn Pavan, which places him right at the top of Darth Maul’s hit list. Then, in the labyrinthine alleyways and sewers of Coruscant, capital city of the Republic, Lorn crosses paths with Darsha Assant, a Jedi Padawan on a mission to earn her Knighthood. Now the future of the Republic depends on Darsha and Lorn. But how can an untried Jedi and an ordinary man, stranger to the powerful ways of the Force, hope to triumph over one of the deadliest killers in the galaxy?

Canon
Canon
Adult Novel

Aftermath: Empire's End

Written by
Chuck Wendig
Artwork by
In this, the final volume of Chuck Wendig’s Aftermath trilogy, we find the epic conclusion to the journey of Nora, Temmin, Mr. Bones, Jas, Jom, and Sinjir, in the events following the destruction of the second Death Star. The book focuses on the Battle of Jakku one year after Return of the Jedi. It deals with the master plan of Gallius Rax, the trilogy’s mysterious villain, and the future of the galaxy. This book also tells the story of the birth of Ben Solo and the early days of Han and Leia’s family. Wendig weaves a complex plot to its culmination through a diverse cast of compelling and mostly original characters.

As the final showdown between the New Republic and the Empire draws near, all eyes turn to a once-isolated planet: Jakku.

The Battle of Endor shattered the Empire, scattering its remaining forces across the galaxy. But the months following the Rebellion's victory have not been easy. The fledgling New Republic has suffered a devastating attack from the Imperial remnant, forcing the new democracy to escalate their hunt for the hidden enemy.

For her role in the deadly ambush, Grand Admiral Rae Sloane is the most wanted Imperial war criminal—and one-time rebel pilot Norra Wexley, back in service at Leia's urgent request, is leading the hunt. But more than just loyalty to the New Republic drives Norra forward: Her husband was turned into a murderous pawn in Sloane's assassination plot, and now she wants vengeance as much as justice.

But Sloane, too, is on a furious quest: pursuing the treacherous Gallius Rax to the barren planet Jakku. As the true mastermind behind the Empire's devastating attack, Rax has led the Empire to its defining moment. The cunning strategist has gathered the powerful remnants of the Empire's war machine, preparing to execute the late Emperor Palpatine's final plan. As the Imperial fleet orbits Jakku, an armada of Republic fighters closes in to finish what began at Endor. Norra and her crew soar into the heart of an apocalyptic clash that will leave land and sky alike scorched. And the future of the galaxy will finally be decided.

Canon
Canon
Adult Novel

Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens

Written by
Alan Dean Foster
Artwork by
Part of the

Alan Dean Foster brings his fantasy and sci-fi storytelling experience to Star Wars canon for the first time in his adaption of the highly-anticipated 2015 film The Force Awakens

The official novelization of the film expands upon the events shown onscreen, giving readers the chance to see the Resistance engage in battle with the First Order from the unique points of view of different characters. Whether you’re a fan of Rey, Poe, Finn, or a combination of figures old and new, this book will take you on a journey across the galaxy you’ll not soon forget.

More than thirty years ago, Star Wars burst onto the big screen and became a cultural phenomenon. Now the next adventures in this blockbuster saga are poised to captivate old and new fans alike—beginning with the highly anticipated Star Wars: The Force Awakens. And alongside the cinematic debut comes the thrilling novel adaptation by New York Times bestselling science fiction master Alan Dean Foster.

Set years after Return of the Jedi, this stunning new action-packed adventure rockets us back into the world of Princess Leia, Han Solo, Chewbacca, C-3PO, R2-D2, and Luke Skywalker, while introducing a host of exciting new characters. Darth Vader may have been redeemed and the Emperor vanquished, but peace can be fleeting, and evil does not easily relent. Yet the simple belief in good can still empower ordinary individuals to rise and meet the greatest challenges.

So return to that galaxy far, far away, and prepare yourself for what happens when the Force awakens. . . .

Canon
Canon
Adult Novel

Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi: Expanded Edition

Written by
Jason Fry
Artwork by
Part of the

Jason Fry gets the honor of continuing Star Wars’s rich history with novel adaptation. In particular, his novelization shines in adding additional material to enhance the story in written form, such as Luke’s Force vision introduction and re-insterting deleted scenes from the film–even Rey’s third lesson! The novel allows us to get an inside look at certain characters such as BB-8 during the space battle over D’qar. Reading the novel of Episode Eight will allow you to soak up the story like never before, taking your time with the characters and getting the story from all-new perspectives.

Written with input from director Rian Johnson, this official adaptation of Star Wars: The Last Jedi expands on the film to include scenes from alternate versions of the script and other additional content.

From the ashes of the Empire has arisen another threat to the galaxy's freedom: the ruthless First Order. Fortunately, new heroes have emerged to take up arms—and perhaps lay down their lives—for the cause. Rey, the orphan strong in the Force; Finn, the ex-stormtrooper who stands against his former masters; and Poe Dameron, the fearless X-wing pilot, have been drawn together to fight side-by-side with General Leia Organa and the Resistance. But the First Order's Supreme Leader Snoke and his merciless enforcer Kylo Ren are adversaries with superior numbers and devastating firepower at their command. Against this enemy, the champions of light may finally be facing their extinction. Their only hope rests with a lost legend: Jedi Master Luke Skywalker.

Where the action of Star Wars: The Force Awakens ended, Star Wars: The Last Jedi begins, as the battle between light and dark climbs to astonishing new heights.

Featuring thrilling photos from the hit movie.

Canon
Canon
Adult Novel

Last Shot

Written by
Daniel José Older
Artwork by

When a common foe from Han and Lando's past shows up on the latter's doorstep, the recent hero of the Rebellion and new father to Ben Solo must rush off once more to save both his friend and possibly, the entire galaxy.

Last Shot uniquely employs a number of different eras throughout the novel, and while jumping between time periods, we get to experience Han, Lando, L3-37 and more at various points in time, allowing us to witness the maturation and evolution of our favorite characters right before our eyes.

With a host of new characters right alongside the classics, including a villain that can't help but terrify all those who encounter him, Last Shot is an essential addition to the Han Solo story.

THEN:

It’s one of the galaxy’s most dangerous secrets: a mysterious transmitter with unknown power and a reward for its discovery that most could only dream of claiming. But those who fly the Millennium Falcon throughout its infamous history aren’t your average scoundrels. Not once, but twice, the crew of the Falcon tries to claim the elusive prize—first, Lando Calrissian and the droid L3-37 at the dawn of an ambitious career, and later, a young and hungry Han Solo with the help of his copilot, Chewbacca. But the device’s creator, the volatile criminal Fyzen Gor, isn’t interested in sharing. And Gor knows how to hold a grudge. . . .

 

NOW:

It’s been ten years since the rebel hero Han Solo last encountered Fyzen Gor. After mounting a successful rebellion against the Empire and starting a family with an Alderaanian princess, Han hasn’t given much thought to the mad inventor. But when Lando turns up at Han’s doorstep in the middle of the night, it’s Fyzen’s assassins that he’s running from. And without Han’s help, Lando—and all life on Cloud City—will be annihilated.

With the assistance of a young hotshot pilot, an Ewok slicer prodigy, the woman who might be the love of Lando’s life, and Han’s best and furriest friend, the two most notorious scoundrels in the New Republic are working together once more. They’ll have to journey across the stars—and into the past—before Gor uses the device’s power to reshape the galaxy.