Thrawn Review

Star Wars: Thrawn by Timothy Zahn is the first book in the Thrawn trilogy. While I’m not a hardcore Star Wars fan, I thought I knew more than your average Joe. However, is it wrong and blasphemous to say that I’ve never heard of this Thrawn character prior to this? I wanted to see what all the fuss was about and his story certainly did not disappoint! In fact, I wished more stories and characters in the Star Wars universe was like this.

“Sometimes a commander’s decisions must be made without regard for how they will be perceived.”


Thrawn’s character and mind frame is anything but simple. He sees things as a warrior should and always seems to be calculating to be couple of steps ahead of his enemies. Where Thrawn lacks in political savviness he makes up for on the battlefield. What is also interesting is his back story. Although Thrawn works for The Empire, he’s not simply an evil character simply for the sake of being evil. Using whatever resources he has to work with, Thrawn simply moves them into position, very subtlety at times, so as to maximize their usefulness in crushing his unsuspecting foes. It’s one of those scenarios where his plan and execution is so brilliant that it may not be until the action is over and victory secured that his allies will have understood what happened. Unfortunately, and I am definitely nitpicking here, this happens much too many times. Thrawn seems invincible due to his high IQ in battle situations and it can start feeling a bit cheap after a while. I’m sure this is all a setup for what is to come later.

“All strive for victory. But not all understand what it truly is.”


It will be interesting to see how the relationship between Arihnda Pryce and Thrawn will play out in the series. Will her political prowess and connections win the day or will Thrawn somehow get the drop on her sooner or later like how he does with all his foes? Not just Arihnda in fact but also between Thrawn and the emperor and to even Darth Vader himself! Thrawn is able to maneuver himself into a position of power even though he may be unaware of it himself but eventually he will be required to make some really tough decisions that undoubtedly will not only affect him but others around him and the Empire itself.

“Because there are problems that must be solved. Some cannot be solved by anyone except me.”


PS. I love how every chapter begins with what seems to be thoughts and insights from Thrawn himself. He drops knowledge and gems on how to read and take advantage of a situation and in many cases, the information here precedes what is to come in that chapter. So many quotable lines!
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