The world of Star Wars was never just about the stories we could see on television or the big screen. It also isn’t just about the world we can play through video games. Instead, the world of Star Wars has a lot of different stories to tell, and some of these stories can be read through many different books. Of course, the most important books you can read about Star Wars are canon ones.
It is important to distinguish that Star Wars has canon books and Legends books. The canon books are the ones that expand on the stories already existing in the movies, series, and games while also introducing new stories and characters that are canon to the overall lore ever since the Disney acquisition of Lucasfilm. So, in that regard, let’s look at all of the best canon books that will help you expand your knowledge of Star Wars.
15. ‘The Light of the Jedi’ (2021) by Charles Soule
Plenty of different Star Wars books took place during the era of the High Republic, which was hundreds of years before the events of the Skywalker Saga. ‘The Light of the Jedi’ was one of the best books written about that period as it showcased what it was like during the High Republic while introducing new concepts, characters, and enemies that fans would love.
This book shows how impactful the Great Disaster was as it threatened to tear the galaxy apart. The Jedi were tasked to pick up the pieces that the Great Disaster left off as they tried to minimize this important event’s fallout. And it is in this book that you get to know more about the Nihil, a group of pirates that were able to give the High-Republic Jedi a lot of problems during that period.
14. ‘Brotherhood’ (2022) by Mike Chen
One of the most heartbreaking relationships in Star Wars was the one involving Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi because they truly loved one another like brothers. However, we know that this relationship was ruined when Anakin decided to walk down the path of the dark side at the expense of the Jedi Order and the democracy that the Jedi fought for their entire lives. And that’s why many people were sincerely heartbroken when they saw that Vader was now willing to kill the man that was like a brother to him.
‘Brotherhood’ is a book that allows us to dive deeper into the relationship between Anakin and Obi-Wan. This more character-focused novel gives us a good insight into what’s going on in the characters’ minds. The book also shows that Kenobi knew about the relationship between Anakin and Padmé the entire time but was only keeping things mum for the sake of his brother. And this book only makes Anakin’s fall during the events of ‘Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith’ much more tragic and heartbreaking.
13. ‘Shadow of the Sith’ (2022) by Adam Christopher
A lot of people have been wondering about the different plot holes that were present during the sequel trilogy, as many fans aren’t too fond of ‘Star Wars Episode VII: The Last Jedi’ and ‘Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker’ due to the many different questionable revelations in those films. One such revelation that was questionable was Rey’s family background. Of course, the many different series that Disney+ has been releasing are looking to fill the plot holes left behind by the sequel trilogy.
‘Shadow of the Sith,’ of course, is one of the books that aim to fill some of the plot holes, especially the ones related to Rey’s family background. The book finally introduces Rey’s parents when they fled from Palpatine’s agents. It also allows us to see that Luke tried to search for Exegol before the events of the sequel trilogy so that he could end the Sith’s reign once and for all.
12. ‘Catalyst’ (2018) by James Luceno
We know that fans love ‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story’ because it was able to return to the roots of Star Wars in the best way possible. As such, Lucasfilm sought to find a way to expand the stories related to ‘Rogue One,’ and that is where this novel comes in as one of the books that helps make the ‘Rogue One’ storyline more interesting and compelling.
The thing about ‘Catalyst’ is that it allowed us to see how different events in the Star Wars continuity connected with one another without the book interfering with the already-established canon. Another part that we loved was how it was able to give us a glimpse of the politics going on within the Empire itself, as it will allow readers to see why it took two decades for the Death Star to be completed and how the stories in the book tie into the events that took place in ‘Rogue One.’
11. ‘The Fallen Star’ (2022) by Claudia Grey
‘The Fallen Star’ is another great book that takes place during the era of the High Republic centuries before the events of the Skywalker Saga. In this storyline, the Jedi Order is still trying to find a way to resolve the issues related to the Nihil and their continuous attacks on the Republic. In that regard, ‘The Fallen Star’ shifts the events to the Starlight Beacon, which was an important installation in the Republic because of how it was able to help the Republic’s continuous expansion efforts.
However, when the Nihil attacked, the Starlight Beacon became a bright star in the sky for the refugees affected by the attack. Marchion Ro, the leader of the Nihil, is now looking to shut this light down as he has his eyes set on the Starlight Beacon. And it is now up to the Jedi to find a way to stop the Nihil from making the galaxy a darker place.
10. ‘Padawan’ (2022) by Kiersten White
One of the characters that fans have always loved in the world of Star Wars is Obi-Wan Kenobi, who has seen some of the most tragic storylines in the continuity but never fell to the dark side of the Force. It is the fact that he is often considered to be the truest Jedi of all time that makes him so endearing to millions of fans around the world. But while he may be a secondary character to the Skywalkers, he also has a very intriguing tale to tell.
‘Padawan’ is a novel that tells the story of Kenobi’s days as a younger Padawan and when he was just assigned to Qui-Gon Jinn. In this book, a young Obi-Wan becomes quite headstrong and eager to see the galaxy, just like Anakin Skywalker. When he thought his master had abandoned him, he set out on an adventure on his own and ended up on a planet with young teenagers living the time of their lives. But while Kenobi saw a glimpse of what teens his age were doing at that stage in their lives, he learned that there could very well be a threat looming in this world.
9. ‘Thrawn: Alliances’ (2018) by Timothy Zahn
‘The Thrawn’ trilogy is one of the most entertaining books you could ever read about Grand Admiral Thrawn. Written by Timothy Zahn, who authored the original Thrawn books of the 90s, ‘Thrawn: Alliances’ is part two of his Thrawn trilogy. This book is one of the best for telling Thrawn’s story when he was already with the Empire. And what makes this book so interesting is that it allows Thrawn to cross paths with none other than Darth Vader.
The Emperor sent Thrawn and Vader on a mission requiring their expertise. Of course, they got into some trouble and realized that working together was the only way to survive this mission. Vader, who still wasn’t sure about Thrawn at this stage in his military career, has no choice but to work with him. And Thrawn, on his part, realizes that Darth Vader is a familiar person he had a chance to work with during the events of the Clone Wars.
8. ‘Thrawn: Treason’ (2019) by Timothy Zahn
The final installment of Timothy Zahn’s Thrawn trilogy is ‘Thrawn: Treason,’ which is set during the latter year of the Empire and takes place concurrently with some of the events of ‘Star Wars: Rebels.’ In this book, we see that Thrawn is now becoming closer and closer to Emperor Palpatine, who trusts Thrawn with his grand plans and is looking to give him more responsibilities. The only problem is that he has to make a decision that could very well put his loyalty to the Emperor on the line.
Thrawn’s apprentice tells him he is needed in the Chiss Ascendancy because something big happened in his homeworld. But Thrawn has already sworn his undying loyalty to Palpatine. In that regard, he has to choose this book as he needs to choose between the Chiss Ascendancy and the Empire. Choosing one over the other is tantamount to treason, so he has to choose carefully.
7. ‘Dark Disciple’ (2015) by Christie Golden
Many fans were disappointed that this wasn’t animated in ‘Star Wars: The Clone Wars,’ considering that it features two characters in that series. Nevertheless, for those who are fans of Asajj Ventress or, at the very least, invested in her journey, ‘Dark Disciple’ should be a good book to read as it focuses on the former Sith acolyte and another familiar character that we met during the events of the Clone Wars.
This book also features Jedi Master Quinlan Vos, who gets entangled with Ventress during the former assassin’s mission to kill Count Dooku. Of course, Vos was also tasked to kill Dooku to end the Clone Wars once and for all. The two fell in love after meeting and getting entangled in the same quest to kill the Sith Lord. These events also allowed us to see Vos temporarily falling to the dark side of the Force before getting redeemed later.
6. ‘Lost Stars’ (2015) by Claudia Gray
One of the most original Star Wars stories you can read is ‘Lost Stars,’ which focuses on the events after the Death Star’s destruction. The book is a young-adult romance novel about two Imperial cadets falling in love with one another but taking different paths in life. One defected to join the Rebels, while the other stayed and ended up serving the Empire. These characters are entirely original and were never featured in other stories in the past.
This is one of the most enjoyable reads in the entire Star Wars universe because it follows different characters that aren’t necessarily the ones involved in the entire affair between the Rebels and the Empire. Instead, we see normal and ordinary people living their lives in the middle of everything happening in the galaxy. And while the characters aren’t the most important, the story and the message are incredibly important because they remind one how easy it is to make the wrong choices.
5. ‘Ahsoka’ (2016) by EK Johnston
While she has always been an important character in Star Wars, Ahsoka Tano’s story after she left the Jedi Order was told in the ‘Ahsoka’ novel by EK Johnston. This book chronicles her journey after she left the Jedi and was now an ordinary citizen trying to survive the galaxy, especially after Order 66. As a survivor of Order 66, Ahsoka now has to find a way to live life differently and away from the eyes of the Empire because, as far as the Imperials were concerned, she was still a Jedi.
As such, the story allows us to see Ahsoka living on a rural planet as an ordinary farm girl, where she meets friends who see her as a regular girl. But an event forced her to use the Force, as this led an Inquisitor to the planet. To save her friends, Ahsoka has to jump back into the fight against the Empire, especially after understanding how evil this new Imperial regime is. And we saw a part of this storyline getting animated in ‘Star Wars: Tales of the Jedi.’
4. ‘Leia: Princess of Alderaan’ (2017) by Claudia Gray
Claudia Gray wrote a beautiful book that was supposed to be a love letter to the late Carrie Fisher, who we know will always be the iconic Princess Leia Organa. This book, entitled ‘Leia: Princess of Alderaan,’ is a young-adult novel that allows us to see Leia’s story when she was still a teenager and before the events of ‘Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope.’
The novel allows us to see just how Leia was raised on Alderaan and how she became the strong woman she eventually became known. While the book doesn’t have many surprises, it is one of the stories that will allow the reader to get drawn closer to Leia in a celebration of how great of a character she is. The book was also released to set up the events of ‘Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi.’
3. ‘Master & Apprentice’ (2019) by Claudia Grey
We know that the relationship between Obi-wan Kenobi and his master, Qui-Gon Jinn, was special because this allowed Kenobi to grow up as one of the best Jedi Masters in the entire history of the Jedi Order. But the thing is that we didn’t know a lot about their history together before the events of ‘The Phantom Menace.’ That is where ‘Master & Apprentice’ tells us more about their story as a master and apprentice duo.
In ‘Master & Apprentice,’ we are allowed to see what went into the mind of Qui-Gon when he was uncovering the secret behind the Prophecy of the Chosen One, as he was still trying to understand the will of the Living Force. While that was happening, Kenobi tried to make sense of his master’s teachings and what it meant to be a true Jedi. As such, it is a good prequel to the events of ‘Star Wars Episode I.’
2. ‘Bloodline’ (2016) by Claudia Gray
During a time when the sequel trilogy was yet to be concluded, ‘Bloodline’ was released as a book that didn’t reveal a lot of things about the storyline of the sequels but was able to showcase some of the best stories that didn’t spoil the conclusion of the trilogy. This book teaches us more about Leia’s story when serving the New Republic as Chief of State.
However, when Leia sensed darkness looming over the galaxy, she decided to join the Resistance and became one of the leaders of this group. This was a great novel because Grey understood Leia as a character better than any other author in Star Wars. And her novel also showed us the different truths Leia had to accept during her time as a leader as she had to come to terms with the fact that she was Vader’s daughter and that this became public knowledge to the rest of the galaxy.
1. ‘Thrawn’ (2017) by Timothy Zahn
We’re a bit biased about this because we just love Grand Admiral Thrawn as a character that can be understood at a very deep level. ‘Thrawn’ is Timothy Zahn’s first book about the character ever since the 90s. The book was released shortly after Grand Admiral Thrawn became a canon character in Star Wars when he appeared in ‘Star Wars: Rebels’ as the antagonist of the series’ final two seasons. And the book was Zahn’s way of introducing Thrawn’s story.
‘Thrawn’ allows us to see how Thrawn could join the Empire, as he was rescued by Imperial soldiers that brought him to Emperor Palpatine. The Emperor was impressed by Thrawn’s intelligence and knowledge of the Unknown Regions of the galaxy, and that was why he was quick to give him a position within the Empire. This book also establishes just how logical and smart Thrawn is and how he used his military genius to become one of the highest-ranking officers in the Empire.
What is your favorite Star Wars canon book?Let us know in the comments!