Unless you are a big Star Wars fan, Star Wars: Queen’s Peril probably won’t excite you.
I, unfortunately, was wholly disappointed. After reading Queen’s Shadow last week (check out my review here), I had high hopes that the prequel would be even better.
Most of the book is slow and uneventful. Captain Panaka’s recruitment of Amidala’s handmaidens peaks some interest, but it is largely addressed in a handful of pages. I was excited to explore rich backstories of, and interactions between, Eirtaé, Saché, Yané, Rabé, Sabé and Padmé, but their introductions are dealt with swiftly and loosely. Instead, the book drones on with mundane political exchanges and a random outing to a night club that adds little to the story’s progression.
The pace does not pick up until well after the halfway point. It then speeds through some of the events of The Phantom Menace with hodge-podge detail and befuddled storytelling. It requires the reader to have clear recall of the invasion of Naboo orchestrated by the Trade Federation and the role and positioning of key characters during that time.
For example, one subsection of a later chapter comprises only of one sentence without any written context: “Anakin Skywalker liked flying.” Another reads: “Anakin Skywalker really liked flying.” Unless you remember specifically what the heck is happening at this point in the film, you won’t be sure where this information came from or what to do with it.
Ultimately, Queen’s Peril does not do enough to develop the front end of the story and tries to pepper in too much towards the back end. Sure, we don’t want a retelling of The Phantom Menace, but we do want new perspective.
The story idea behind Queen’s Peril had great potential but this book is unfortunately a half-baked and humdrum read.
If you’re a big Star Wars fan and want to read Queen’s Peril, you can pre-order it on Amazon today.