So you’ve seen the Holy Trilogy so many times you can recite it from memory. You have the soundtracks on infinite loop on your MP3 player, and you’ve consumed all of the new Disney Star Wars content. But are you an new fan who’s never read the best Star Wars Legends books and graphic novels? Below we’ve narrowed down the Star Wars books to the ten that are absolute must-reads for fans of the saga, even if they exist in a universe that isn’t connected to the overall canon anymore. Most are novels, but there are two graphic novels we had to include.
Heir to the Empire Trilogy
If you’re a Star Wars fan who hasn’t read the Thrawn trilogy, we feel sorry for you. Heir to the Empire, Dark Force Rising, and The Last Command launched the entire Star Wars Expanded Universe book series and are responsible for the resurgence of Star Wars in the 90s. They even released a 20th anniversary version with annotations by Zahn, which is a great version even for long-time fans to revisit.
Second only to the Thrawn trilogy is what some fans consider to be the best Jedi book ever written. Told in the first person I, Jedi chronicles the story of one of the main characters from the X-Wing series of novels as he begins training as a Jedi at Luke’s Jedi Academy.
Hated by fans for the death of Chewie (which legend says Salvatore refused to do and tried to give his pay back for), Vector Prime kicked off the New Jedi Order – the last great Star Wars book series. Legacy of the Jedi and Fate of the Jedi didn’t quite match the epic that the NJO was and Vector Prime kicked it off with a shock.
George Lucas has publicly mocked Dark Empire when speaking about the EU, so if he doesn’t like it; it must be awesome. This is the comic series where the Emperor is resurrected via a clone and Luke turns to the Dark Side. While the cloning stuff in this (and the Thrawn trilogy) is kinda nullified by the canon established in the Prequels, it’s still an awesome comic series.
While the Outbound Flight was mentioned in the Thrawn books, it took years for Zahn to actually write the story. But the wait was well worth it. Not only do you get to see how awesome the young Thrawn was in the Prequel-era, it also is a foreboding set up for the war depicted in the New Jedi Order.