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Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace

Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace

4.3 103
by Terry Brooks, George Lucas (From an Idea by)

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Best of the Best. This stunning new chapter in George Lucas's "Star Wars" saga has been brought to life by Terry Brooks, the foremost author of fantasy fiction. A stirring novel of good and evil, human strengths and frailties, and grand adventure, "The Phantom Menace" adds powerful new dimension to a legendary work of imagination. Abridged.


Best of the Best. This stunning new chapter in George Lucas's "Star Wars" saga has been brought to life by Terry Brooks, the foremost author of fantasy fiction. A stirring novel of good and evil, human strengths and frailties, and grand adventure, "The Phantom Menace" adds powerful new dimension to a legendary work of imagination. Abridged.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Breathless . . . filled with action from page one.”—New York Post

Product Details

Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
Star Wars

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NOTE: This excerpt may not be posted on other Web sites without the permission of Lucasfilm Ltd.


The suns burned down out of a cloudless blue sky, washing the vast desert wastes of the planet in brilliant white light. The resultant glare rose off the flat, sandy surface in a wet shimmer of blistering heat to fill the gaps between the massive cliff faces and solitary outcroppings of the mountains that were the planet's sole distinguishing feature. Sharply etched, the monoliths stood like sentinels keeping watch in a watery haze.

When the Podracers streaked past, engines roaring with ferocious hunger and relentless drive, the heat and the light seemed to shatter and the mountains themselves to tremble.

Anakin Skywalker leaned into the curve of the raceway that took him past the stone arch marking the entry into Beggar's Canyon on the first lap of the run, easing the thruster bars forward, giving the engines a little more juice. The wedge-shaped rockets exploded with power, the right a tad harder than the left, banking the Pod in which Anakin sat sharply left to clear the turn. Swiftly, he adjusted the steering to straighten the racer, boosted power further, and shot through the arch. Loose sand whiplashed in the wake of his passing, filling the air with a gritty sheen, whirling and dancing through the heat. He ripped into the canyon, fingers playing across the controls, hands steady on the steering.

It was all so quick, so instantaneous. One mistake, one misjudgment, and he would be out of the race and lucky if he weren't dead. That was the thrill of it. All that power, all that speed, just at hisfingertips, and no margin for error. Two huge turbines dragged a fragile Pod over sandy flats, around jagged-edged mountains, down shadowed draws, and over heart-wrenching drops in a series of twisting, winding curves and jumps at the greatest speed a driver could manage. Control cables ran from the Pod to the engines, and energy binders locked the engines to each other. If any part of the three struck something solid, the whole of the assembly would collapse in a splintering of metal and a fiery wash of rocket fuel. If any part broke free, it was all over.

A grin split Anakin's young face as he injected a bit more power into the thrusters.

Ahead, the canyon narrowed and the shadows deepened. Anakin bore down on the slit of brightness that opened back onto the flats, keeping low to the ground where passage was widest. If he stayed high, he risked brushing the cliff faces on either side. That had happened to Regga in a race last month, and they were still looking for the pieces.

It would not happen to him.

He shoved the thruster bars forward and exploded through the gap onto the flats, engines screaming.

Sitting in the Pod with his hands on the controls, Anakin could feel the vibration of the engines travel up the control cables and fill him with their music. Wrapped in his rough-made jumpsuit, his racing helmet, his goggles, and his gloves, he was wedged so closely in his seat that he could feel the rush of the wind across the Pod's skin beneath him. When he raced like this, he was never simply the driver of a Podracer, never just an additional part. Rather, he was at one with the whole, and engines, Pod, and he were bound together in a way he could not entirely explain. Each shimmy, each small throb, each tug and twist of strut and tie were apparent to him, and he could sense at any given moment exactly what was happening throughout the length and breadth of his racer. It spoke to him in its own language, a mix of sounds and feelings, and though it did not use words, he could understand everything it said.

Sometimes, he thought dreamily, he could sense what it would say before it even spoke.

A flash of gleaming orange metal shot past him on his right, and he watched the distinctive split-X of Sebulba's engines flare out before him, taking away the lead he had seized through an unusually quick start. His brow wrinkled in disgust at himself for his momentary lapse of concentration and his dislike of the other racer. All gangly and crook-legged, Sebulba was as twisted inside as out, a dangerous adversary who won often and took delight in doing so at the expense of others. The Dug had caused more than a dozen crashes of other Podracers in the past year alone, and his eyes glinted with wicked pleasure when he recounted the tales to others on the dusty streets of Mos Espa. Anakin knew Sebulba well--and knew better than to take chances with him.

He rode the thruster bars forward, fed fresh power to the engines, and rocketed ahead.

It didn't help, he supposed as he watched the distance between them narrow, that he was human or, much worse, that he was the only human ever to drive in the Podraces. The ultimate test of skill and daring on Tatooine and the favorite spectator sport of the citizens of Mos Espa, it was supposed to be beyond the skill and capability of any human. Multiple arms and multihinged joints, stalk eyes, heads that swiveled 180 degrees, and bodies that twisted as if boneless gave advantages to other creatures that humans could not begin to overcome. The most famous racers, the best of a rare breed, were strangely shaped, complexly formed beings with a penchant for taking risks that bordered on insanity.

But Anakin Skywalker, while nothing like these, was so intuitive in his understanding of the skills required by his sport and so comfortable with its demands that his lack of these other attributes seemed to matter not at all. It was a source of some mystery to everyone, and a source of disgust and growing irritation to Sebulba in particular.

Last month, in another race, the wily Dug had tried to run Anakin into a cliff face. He had failed only because Anakin sensed him coming up from behind and underneath, an illegal razor saw extended to sever Anakin's right Steelton control cable, and Anakin lifted away to safety before the saw could do its damage. His escape cost him the race, but allowed him to keep his life. It was a trade he was still angry at having been forced to make.

The racers whipped through columns of ancient statuary and across the floor of the arena erected on the edge of Mos Espa. They swept under the winner's arch, past row upon row of seats crammed with spectators cheering them on, past pit droids, repair stations, and the boxes where the Hutts watched in isolated splendor above the commoners. From an overlook in a tower centered on the arch, the two-headed Troig who served as announcer would be shouting out their names and positions to the crowd. Anakin allowed himself a momentary glimpse of blurred figures that were left behind so fast they might have been nothing more than a mirage. His mother, Shmi, would be among them, worrying as she always did. She hated watching him drive in the Podraces, but she couldn't help herself. She never said so, but he thought she believed that simply by being there she could keep him from coming to harm. It had worked so far. He had crashed twice and failed to finish even once, but after more than half a dozen races he was unharmed. And he liked having her there. It gave him a strange sort of confidence in himself he didn't like to think about too closely.

Besides, what choice did they have in the matter? He raced because he was good at it, Watto knew he was good at it, and whatever Watto wanted of him he would do. That was the price you paid when you were a slave, and Anakin Skywalker had been a slave all his life.

Arch Canyon rose broad and deep before him, an expanse of rock leading into Jag Crag Gorge, a twisting channel the racers were required to navigate on their way to the high flats beyond. Sebulba was just ahead, rocketing low and tight across the ground, trying to put some distance between Anakin and himself. Behind Anakin, close now, were three other racers spread out against the horizon. A quick glance revealed Mawhonic, Gasgano, and Rimkar trailing in his strange bubble pod. All three were gaining. Anakin started to engage his thrusters, then drew back. They were too close to the gorge. Too much power there, and he would be in trouble. Response time in the channel was compacted down to almost nothing. It was better to wait.

Mawhonic and Gasgano seemed to agree, settling their Pods into place behind his as they approached the split in the rock. But Rimkar was not content to wait and roared past Anakin split seconds before they entered the cleft and disappeared into darkness.

Anakin leveled out his Pod, lifting slightly from the rock-strewn floor of the channel, letting his memory and his instincts take him down the winding cut. When he raced, everything around him slowed down rather than sped up. It was different than you'd expect. Rock and sand and shadows flew past in a wild mix of patterns and shapes, and still he could see so clearly. All the details seemed to jump out at him, as if illuminated by exactly what should make them so difficult to distinguish. He could almost close his eyes and drive, he thought. He was that much in tune with everything around him, that much aware of where he was.

He eased swiftly down the channel, catching glimpses of Rimkar's engine exhausts as they flashed crimson in the shadows. Far, far overhead, the sky was a brilliant blue streak down the center of the mountain, sending a frail streamer of light into the gap that lost brilliance with every meter it dropped so that by the time it reached Anakin and his fellow racers, it barely cut the dark. Yet Anakin was at peace, lost deep within himself as he drove his Pod, bonded with his engines, given over to the throb and hum of his racer and the soft, velvet dark that folded about.

When they emerged into the light once more, Anakin jammed the thruster bars forward and streaked after Sebulba. Mawhonic and Gasgano were right behind. Ahead, Rimkar had caught Sebulba and was trying to edge past. The lanky Dug lifted his split-X engines slightly to scrape against Rimkar's Pod. But Rimkar's rounded shell eased smoothly away, unaffected. Side by side the racers tore across the high flats, headed for Metta Drop. Anakin closed on them, drawing away from Mawhonic and Gasgano. People said what they wanted about Watto--and there was plenty to say that wasn't good--but he had an eye for Podracers. The big engines jumped obediently as Anakin fed fuel into the thrusters, and in seconds he was drawing alongside Sebulba's split-X.

They were even when they reached Metta Drop and rocketed over and tumbled straight down.

The trick with drops, as every racer knew, was to gather enough speed going down to gain time over your opponents, but not so much speed that the racer couldn't pull out of the drop and level out again before it nose-dived into the rocks below. So when Sebulba pulled out early, Anakin was momentarily surprised. Then he felt the backwash of the split-X engines hammer into his Pod. The treacherous Dug had only looked as if he would pull out and instead had lifted away and then deliberately fishtailed atop both Anakin and Rimkar, using his exhaust to slam them against the cliff face.

Rimkar, caught completely by surprise, jammed his thruster bars forward in an automatic response that took him right into the mountain. Metal fragments of Pod and engines careened away from the rock wall in a fiery shower, leaving a long black scar along the ravaged surface.

Anakin might have gone the same way but for his instincts. Almost before he knew what he was doing, at the same instant he felt the backwash of Sebulba's engines slam into him, he lifted out of his own descent and away from the mountain, almost colliding with a surprised Sebulba, who veered off wildly to save himself. Anakin's sudden wrenching of his Pod's steering took him spinning away into the midday, off course and out of control. He pulled back on the steering, eased off on the thrusters, cut the fuel supply to the big engines, and watched the ground rise up to meet him in a rush of sand and reflected light.

He struck the ground in a bone-wrenching skid that severed both control cables, the big engines flying off in two directions while the Pod careened first left, then right, and then began to roll. Anakin could only brace himself inside, spinning and twisting in a roil of sand and heat, praying that he didn't wind up against an outcropping of rock. Metal shrieked in protest and dust filled the Pod's interior. Somewhere off to his right, an engine exploded in a ground-shaking roar. Anakin's arms were stretched out to either side, keeping him squarely placed through the pummeling the Pod experienced as it continued to roll and then roll some more.

Finally, it stopped, tilted wildly to one side. Anakin waited a moment, then loosened his restraining belt and crawled out. The heat of the desert rose to meet him, and the blinding sunlight bore down through his goggles. Overhead, the last of the Podracers streaked away into the blue horizon, engines whining and booming. Silence followed, deep and profound.

Anakin glanced left and right at what remained of his engines, taking in the damage, assessing the work they would need to operate again. He looked finally at his Pod and grimaced. Watto would not be happy.

But then Watto seldom was.

Anakin Skywalker sat down with his back against the ruined Pod, gaining what small relief he could from its shadow in the glare of Tatooine's twin suns. A landspeeder would be along in a few minutes to pick him up. Watto would be there to chew him out. His mother would be there to give him a hug and take him home. He wasn't satisfied with how things had turned out, but he wasn't discouraged either. He could have won the race if Sebulba had played fair. He could have won easily.

He sighed and tipped back his helmet.

One day soon he would win a lot of races. Maybe even next year, when he reached the age of ten.

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“Breathless . . . filled with action from page one.”—New York Post

Meet the Author

Terry Brooks is the New York Times bestselling author of more than thirty books, including the Legend of Shannara novels Bearers of the Black Staff and The Measure of the Magic; the Genesis of Shannara novels Armageddon’s Children, The Elves of Cintra, and The Gypsy Morph; The Sword of Shannara; the Voyage of the Jerle Shannara trilogy: Ilse Witch, Antrax, and Morgawr; the High Druid of Shannara trilogy: Jarka Ruus, Tanequil, and Straken; and the nonfiction book Sometimes the Magic Works: Lessons from a Writing Life. His novels Running with the Demon and A Knight of the Word were selected by the Rocky Mountain News as two of the best science fiction/fantasy novels of the twentieth century. The author was a practicing attorney for many years but now writes full-time. He lives with his wife, Judine, in the Pacific Northwest.

Brief Biography

Pacific Northwest and Hawaii
Date of Birth:
January 8, 1944
Place of Birth:
Sterling, Illinois
B.A. in English, Hamilton College, 1966; J.D., Washington and Lee University

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Star Wars Episode I 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 103 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The Phantom Menace is about two jedi, Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wann Kenobi, who find a boy who could fulfill the ancient prophecy. Naboo was under attack so Obi-Wann and Qui-Gon went to Naboo to convince the Federation to stop the attack.. Before they could speak to anyone, the doors were locked and deadly gas was sprayed all around the room. They cut through the doors with their lightsabers destroyed droids, and held their breath so they couldn¿t breath the gas. Once they escaped then ran into a Gungan named Jar Jar Binks. The two jedi and Jar Jar travel to the Naboo Palace, where they found Queen Amidala, Captain Panaka, and their gaurds surrounded by battle droids. Qui-Gon and Obi-Wann kill the battle droids and most of them fly away in a ship. The Federation had surrounded the planet with ships so on their way out the ships fired at them. They couldn¿t make it all the way to Crusant without making repairs. The nearest planer was Tatoine so they stopped there to buy parts for the ship. At Tatoine, Qui-Gon, R2D2, and the Queens hand maiden, Padme, ran into a boy named Anakin Skywalker. Anakin fell in love with Padme, who was actually the Queen in disguise, and invited her and her friends to stay at his house because a sandstorm was coming. They didn¿t have enough money for what they needed so they entered Anakin into a pod race. Qui-Gon made a bet with Anakin¿s slave owner. The bet was, if Anakin won, Qui-Gon got the parts he needed, got Anakin, and the slave owner got the prize money. If Anakin lost, the slave owner got Qui-Gon¿s ship and the Pod. Anakin won so Qui-Gon and everyone else went to Crusant. At Crusant , Anakin was tested and was strong with the force, but was too old to be trained now. The Queen decided she wanted to go back to Naboo to save her people. They went to talk to the Gungans, who agreed to help them get Naboo back. The Gungans fought the battle droids off, the two Jedi battled Darth Maul the Sith, the pilots went to destroy the droid control ship, and the Queen and her guards went to kidnap Nute Gunray, the viceroy. Anakin hid in a plane but the plane started to take off. Meanwhile the Gungans had fought and were having to retreat. The queen had Nute surrounded but he said the droids would bust through the door any minute. Anakin was flying around and landed on the droid control ship. There were tons of droids in front of the ship so he blasted his torpedoes, although he missed the droids, the whole control ship started to blow up.Then all th droids shut off. In the battle against Darth Maul Obi-Wann was stuck behind a laser shield while Qui-Gon and Darth Maul fought. Qui-Gon got killed just as the laser shield went down. Then Obi-Wann and Darth Maul had an intense battle until Obi-Wann sliced Darth Maul in half. After they won Anakin was able to be trained. This is a great book and I highly recommend it. This book is filled with action. Everywhere there is some type of fight going on from an argument to a light saber battle. The fight for the planet Naboo has the most action with a light saber battle, the Gungans fighting droids, and even the Queen captures Nute Gunray. This book has great details throughout the story. It describes the people so amazingly like when it describes Jar Jar Binks, it talks about his big yellow eyes and his reddish scale-like things. Also Darth Maul is described as something with yellow eyes, red and black tattoos on his face, and horns sticking out of his head. There ore tons of interesting events in the book. They have Pod races, droid battles, shop battles, light saber battles and kidnaping. In the Pod race, Anakin knew where to go, what to do, and when to do it, which is pretty cool and interesting. This story has technology that is way better than what we have today. I recommend this to anyone who likes a good book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Star Wars Episode1 The Phantom Menace is a science fiction book by George Lucas. I think that this book has a slow beginning but gets more exciting toward the end. Overall I liked it. The setting of the book is a long time ago in a galaxy far far away. The major conflict of this story is how Queen Amidala will end the Trade Federation to end the blockade on her planet. She first tries to end her problem peacefully by trying to get the Senate to make it illegal. Then she tries to impeach the counselor. Finally she tries to take her planet back by force. The authors style is easy to read and it is in third person. I recommend this book to people who what to get some reading done.
StarWarsGamerNerd More than 1 year ago
This book was great basically from start to finish. It tells the story far better than the movie ever did. Even though books let us go into the minds of characters, it still showed far much more feeling and characterization to the characters. You understand Anakin more. He's not just some happy-go-lucky, clean dressed, "Yipee" yelling kid. The story puts him in rags, being a slave and all, and Watto a little more meaner and more like a slave-driving, money hungry being that he is. It tells about a race he's in when the story first starts out and he crashes and loses, and gets a scolding from Watto. It tells a lot more about how strong he is with the Force and how he can't explain what he can do. It shows a closer relationship between Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan, like father and son, the way it should've been in the movie. They sometimes bicker and disagree, which is what people do. The book gives more characterization for Panaka and the Queen. Panaka doesn't agree with the Jedi and shows it, showing his protection of the Queen. She shows much more feeling. The best part is how Obi-Wan can't stand Jar Jar and doesn't agree with Qui-Gon taking him along. It explains why Qui-Gon took him. But by the end Obi-Wan learns his lessons from Qui-Gon. You also go into the thoughts of Jar Jar, making him not...quite so bad. The end space battle makes more sense. R2-D2 was piloting the ship and the Force was using Anakin, which the movie just made it look like an accident and basically corny. Packed with extra scenes and dialogue, you get a much better understanding of the story which the movie simply didn't do. If the movie was a lot more like the book, I think it would've done better....along with a lot of Jar Jar's annoying dialogue and antics cut down too.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Granted, if you liked Star Wars: The Phantom Menace there's a good chance you'll like this book, but it dosen't hold togethere nearly as good as the movie. First of all there's so much describing of detail to what a person is thinking and not of what the scene looks like. If you haven't seen the movie, please do before reading this book because it dosen't make you feel like you're standing right there. Also, the way the chapters are blended together, well they are'nt. They end in awkward places and have no kinds off hooks or cliffhangers to make you keep on reading. It isn't suspensful and it dosen't keep up it's end of the bargain for the movie. Don't get this book if you aren't a Star Wars maniac. Trust me.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
XD yeah another star wars movie yaay!!! :x omg secret mission. :D Monsters out there, leaking in here, all sinking and no power?????!!! WHEN DO YOUSA THINK WESA IN TROUBLE? haha :) aww what a CUTE little kid. O.o ?? Thats Anakin?? HE grows up to be Darth Vader?? XD hahahaha epic jar-jar fail his tongue got zapped by podracer energy. >:( Sebulba you JERKFACE!!!!!!!!!! DATS CHEATING!! :D yay Anakin won anyway!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ohno its DARTH MAUL OMG HES SO ANGRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YAYZ THE GOOD GUYZ ESCAPED!!! *Gets up to go make microwaved popcorn* Ok back now >:O WHAT DO YOU MEAN ANAKIN CANT BE A JEDI???? Yayz Qui Gon is gonna train him. Omg secret forest area Padme is the queen?? Lolwut Gungan army in a forcefield bubble :) Anakin flying a fighter ship ;) O.O Jedi battle. So intense. Epic music. T.T NOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! QUI GON , WHYYYYYYY????? YESH OBI WAN FOR THE WIN!! oh yayz a parade. This movie changed my life forevs. --Hikari Raion, Padawan.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Truly, it was. Could have been better, but good nonetheless. The only thing I didn't like about it was how he portrayed Obi-Wan: too pessimistic at times. But then again, I'm a die-hard Obi-Wan fan so, take that with a grain of salt... Other than that, this was basically flawless. Well worth it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
For centuries, the Jedi Knights have guarded the Republic and guaranteed its freedom. Now that freedom is threatened by the growing power of the amoral Trade Federation, and by an enemy even the Jedi have cause to fear. The Sith Lords aren't gone from the universe, after all. As the Trade Federation invades the planet Naboo, Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn arrives with his apprentice, Obi-Wan Kenobi, to rescue Queen Amidala. When their ship suffers damage during their escape, they're forced to land on a remote planet called Tatooine. There a nine-year-old slave boy, Anakin Skywalker, proves their only hope of repairing the ship and getting Amidala to the galactic capital of Coruscant. Young Skywalker may be their only hope for a great deal more than Naboo's future, though. As Master Qui-Gon realizes, when he perceives the boy's Jedi-like gifts and discovers through surreptitious testing that Anakin's midi-chlorian count exceeds that of any Jedi on record. Can this child be the promised one? Who will, according to ancient prophecy, restore balance to the Force? Well written and enjoyable. Although this story really does work better on the movie screen, the author does a good job of getting inside the characters' heads. Even the often ridiculed Jar Jar Binks - a comic relief figure, only, in the film - gains enough depth to make him interesting.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book may be kinda boring but it get way better
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Its the movie.........in a book. What more is there to say. It is a little more descriptive as all books are when compared to movies, but since this is taking the movie and adapting it to a book, it was actually somewhat boring.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love Star Wars even though I'm a girl. Other girls in my class just don't understand that Star Wars is the best series of books and movies that I have ever heard of!!!!!!
Revan97 More than 1 year ago
Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace is an absolute must for any Star Wars fan. The story of how Anakin Skywalker won his freedom from slavery and began his quest as a Jedi that would eventually lead to his becoming the galaxy conquering Darth Vader is simply amazing. Terry Brooks has successfully adapted a gripping masterpiece and made a book that is a fun and easy read. I could read an entire novel just about Anakin Skywalker going about his life as a slave on Tatooine. Perhaps the very best quality of this novel is that it includes several chapters of great material that wasn't included in the movie. This makes for an interesting read because you never know when something new that you have never before seen might jump out at you from among the familiar. Overall, it's highly enjoyable and pretty easy to read too. I recommend this book to any person who likes Star Wars.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thecbzhbffvfgtvdjdctdhgbbvgz fhrhtfjgccgkfhhhgfbfbgfhfcfxh Fhfhbfdgfgdgdgdgdgdggdggfgcgfgfvcgdggddggggggggggggg Ggggggggvvgggggg
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cant wait untill star wars episode vii (7).
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Its awsome meet darth maul
Guest More than 1 year ago
Although when I read this book I wasn't very familiar with the works of Terry Brooks. But as the reviews in the book suggest, Brooks is a master story teller. Finely detailed and well fitted to the characters of Episode I. And since the book was written before the movie actually came out (which meant he read the script and did not see the movie) Brooks has successfully "brought-to-life" The Phantom Menace. I strongly recommend reading this book if your a good fan of Star Wars.
Guest More than 1 year ago
AWESOME! From pg. 1 it's great. I'm on pg. 66 but I can tell you it's awesome. Has alot of humor so far, too. It's never boring.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was the best star wars audio I have heard since the audio drama. I think the reader did very well. If you are blind like I am you could probably enjoy audiobooks such as this one even more than a person with sight. I can immagine the star wars world as Adams is describing it to me, and I can feel like I am right there in that world.
Anonymous 19 days ago
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Much better than will sakes verson than one was soooooooooooooooooooooo baaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddd
esarkesian More than 1 year ago
Nearly 17 years after its release, The Phantom Menace is widely seen as one of the two worst entries in the Star Wars film series (though where it falls depends on the fan, usually). So how does the novelization hold up? Considering that it's the same story, the novelization might be the better way to take in the story. It hits many of the same beats as the film, which is understandable, but it's stripped of the wooden performances and largely verbally silent segments of the film. For all the problems of the film, there's a solid enough story, and that's what carries over to the novelization. With the series gaining new fans now and into the future, I'd recommend watching the film first, but for those looking to dive into the literary world of Star Wars, The Phantom Menace is worth reading to help put this part of the saga into a tone that fits with the rest of the Star Wars canon.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love it so much!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
“A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…” O.k, the book was a galactic adventure and with how they phrased everything, that’s the kind of book I would read every day! I have had a hard time trying to find the right book that I would connect to but I think I have found the right one. I love the phrase, “a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away,” that is a cool one! It was not hard to read and I am a 6th grader. I think this is a good book for 5th grade students and older people, if they like action books. I hope you’ll like it as much as I do.
LolitaV More than 1 year ago
After seeing the Star Wars movies for the first time last year I decided I wanted to read the books of the prequel series as well and bought the omnibus edition with the three prequel books. I finally got around to reading the first book and it's a great way to revisit the story and experience it in a different way. I think this is the first time I read a book after I've seen the movie. It was an interesting experience, instead of visualizing the characters myself I saw the actors and landscapes from the movie and saw everything play out in my mind very vividly. This book follows the story from the movie pretty closely, but there are some extra scenes and tidbits of insight and information that are missing in the movie. I also though that in book form the story was a bit easier to follow than in movie, but that might be my personal preference for reading stories over watching movies. There are some scenes where we see Darth Sidious set up his plot and communicate with the trade federation about the blockade. We see Annakin participate in a pod race before he meets Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan and I felt like we got a better feel for his life as a slave. There is also a bit more depth in the characters, like why Qui-Gon decides to help Annakin and Jar Jar and what Obi-Wan thinks of that. There are also a few explanations of how the Jedi order and how the Sith came to be that aren't in the movies. So the book manages to add a few tidbits to make it worth the read. One of the issues I had is with Terry Brooks his writing style. His writing stylte is telling and descriptive and even a bit distant and dry at times. After a few chapters I did got used to his writing style. The lightsaber fight scenes are a lot better in the movie, Terry Brooks didn't manage to capture the feel of those battles. I did think he did a great job with the podracer scenes capturing the excitement of the races. I do wonder if this book would be the same if you read it before the movie There are some descriptions and I think the author did a good job with the world and character descriptions, but my knowledge and memories of the movie filled in a lot of details. On the other hand the explanations and the flow of the story was done very well, so I don't think a reader would be lost reading the books first. I enjoyed seeing the familiar characters again and seeing the story play out again. It's great to revisit the star wars universe in this way and to experience the story in a different way. I really enjoyed seeing the dynamics between all the characters. I liked seeing the different facets of Annakin's personality already here, we see his dreams, his love for flying and podracing, his determination, but there's also a scene showing his temper that I don't remember was in the movie. There are also some clumsy Jar Jar scenes that made me smile that are in the movie as well. I also thought it was interesting to see yoda his reluctance to allow Annakin into the Jedi order and how he didn't agree with the council, I didn't remember that scene as well from the movie. There is a bit more foreshadowing and hints about Darth Sidious his plans in this book already, while I felt that is given less attention in the movies, we get a few chapters from his point of view and the trade federation so we see their side too.The author captured the essence of the story very well and made it all feel familiar and new at the same time.
Charizard More than 1 year ago
No CGI Required While Episode I is far from a great film, Terry Brooks does a terrific job putting this story into words. In comparison with the novelizations of Episodes II and III, it is not quite as strong, but that does not diminish what a joyful experience reading this book can be. It adds depth to the characters (which is much needed due to their stiff portrayals in the film). The novelization also helps put flesh on and reason onto the socio-political conflict that is central to the story (whereas the problem is convoluted at best in the movie). The book’s strongest points are the way it helps the reader get into the heads of the characters–young Anakin and Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn in particular. Episode I was ambitious in all that it tried to accomplish. Unfortunately, only so much can be achieved in the time-limitations of the film. The advantage of reading the story in this format is that there is much more time and page-space to work with. Brooks is able to introduce Anakin far earlier in the book, helping establish him as a main character with whom the reader should empathize. Qui-Gon receives his due in this book as well. He is firmly placed as a strong-willed Jedi who sets his own agenda, and his ideological conflict with his apprentice and the Jedi Council works to propel the drama forward. I genuinely smiled throughout the reading of this book, enjoying the story without the cynicism that is difficult to shake when watching the dated CGI. The best part – you can give the characters new voices in your head while you read and put your imagination to work as you enjoy a story that is much better as a book. You can even play Duel of the Fates and the march of the Trade Federation while you read to spice things up if you like.