Return of the Jedi (Classic Star Wars)

ISBN: 1570422508
ISBN 13: 9781570422508
By: James Kahn George Lucas Lawrence Kasdan

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About this book

It was a dark time for the rebel alliance...Han Solo, frozen in carbonite, had been delivered into the hands of the vile gangster Jabba the Hutt. Determined to rescue him, Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, and Lando Calrissian launched a hazardous mission against Jabba's Tatooine stronghold.The Rebel commanders gathered all the warships of the Rebel fleet into a single giant armada. And Darth Vader and the Emperor, who had ordered construction to begin on a new and even more powerful Death Star, were making plans to crush the Rebel Alliance once and for all.Features a bonus section following the novel that includes a primer on the Star Wars expanded universe, and over half a dozen excerpts from some of the most popular Star Wars books of the last thirty years!

Reader's Thoughts

Jesse Booth

Again, great story, but not portrayed very well through the writing style. I did appreciate the opportunity to get in Luke's head a bit. It was interesting to see the battle within his mind over the light and dark side. Strangely enough, I felt a little sad reading about Yoda's death. He's the iconic Jedi. Simply awesome.

John Yelverton

Not quite as good as the other adaptations that I have read, but it's still a fun read.

Gizella Tóth

A három "első" közül talán ez volt a legkevésbé élvezhető könyvben.

Derek

Kahn (Kaaaaaaahn! Sorry, had to do it) is clearly very comfortable here, with a more relaxed, less conservative style than the previous two books. Where the previous authors seem reluctant to contribute any thought or detail not explicitly given, Khan (I won't do it again) is in every character's head and adding little tidbits which may or may not be canon (the throwaway mention of Owen as Obi-Wan's brother, not Anakin's half-brother, and so forth).The back side of this is a variance with expectations with regard to the characters' inner voices. Lando thinks almost exclusively in terms of being a card sharp or conman, and Han's transformation of character leaves the interesting self-involved rogue behind.And it tends to wax poetic or melodramatic occasionally, which doesn't suit the energy of the story.And why, oh why, are R2D2's and Chewbacca's vocalizations spelled out? "Vrrrr-dit dweet?"

Mark

The last two books in the original trilogy series, "The Empire Strikes Back" and "Return of the Jedi," were the weakest of the movie novelizations. This one in particular had several passages that read like they were written in the dark on a steno pad by someone in a theater watching the movie at the time.

Mark

Set a little while after the events of “The Empire Strikes Back” (it’s not clear but at least six months), this starts with Luke, Leia, Lando, Chewie and the droids rescuing Han from the clutches of slimy gangster Jabba The Hutt. Once freed, Luke goes to see Yoda to find out if Vader was telling the truth (no spoilers here!), whilst the others head for the Rebellion fleet. A new Death Star is being constructed and the final battle of the war between Empire and Rebellion is about to play out, whilst Luke must finally meet his destiny. Told at breakneck speed, this suffers from an overly simplistic writing style - it’s the adult novelisation but sometimes doesn’t feel like it and very little of the prose has any kind of elegance. Maybe Kahn was hamstrung - it’s the most visual of the original trilogy, after all - and most of the set-pieces that are big and exciting on screen are dealt with in the text in a couple of lines (you get no sense of the excitement of the speeder bike chase here, for example and the space battle consists of craft manoeuvring and random “watch your tail!” type dialogue). As with the film, the best part is in Jabba’s Palace though Kahn does a good job of getting into Vader’s head later in the book (even if the idea of his curling his lip did make me smile - who’s going to see it?). Stylistically the book makes further mistakes - the decision to give dialogue to R2-D2, Chewie, Nien Nunb and various Ewoks in their native tongue (which had me skipping sections) seems ridiculous and Lando’s characterisation often consists of mentioning he’s a gambling man as he calculates his odds all the time. As a huge Star Wars fan, it’s difficult to tell if I’m being overly picky but it is an entertaining read, for all that, though not a patch on the film it derives from (it’s more faithful to Episode 6 than the Empire novelisation was to its source) and most of it still works, even with the mythology retro-fitting caused by the prequels. I quite enjoyed it so, if you’re a fan, you might enjoy it too. If you’re not a fan of the saga, this won’t sway your thinking.

John Cress

This is similar to the other episode 4-6 books. They are fun to read as one can visualize and hear the movies. I do remember that this came out before I had gone to the movie and the temptation to read the book first was so high but I avoiding doing so back in 1983 to avoid spoilers. It wasn't easy but I'm glad waited till after the movie to read. A good adaptation but again, not like to big screen.

Beau Johnston

Not as dark as Star Wars: From the Adventures of Luke Skywalker, or The Empire Strikes Back, but still entertaining.

Lorien

Another brilliant adaptation of the movie. There are moments that couldn't be in the films, such as when Vader is Anakin once more, and looks on his son for the first and last time; or when Luke is being seduced to the dark side, in the most subtle, overwhelming ways that really make this book. The difference is great, and makes this a phenominal book. Truely enjoyed it and can't wait to see VII, and read it's book!

Mark Oppenlander

I hadn't read this book since my teens. It was eye opening to revisit it now. I agree with the other reviewers who have complained about the writing in this, the novelization of the third Star Wars film. I doubt I noticed how bad the writing was at the age of 13. I don't know who James Kahn is or what else he has done, but he seems like a bit of a hack. He writes some of the most inane prose I have ever read and his attempts to spell out Chewie and Artoo's dialogue are ugly. His work with characters like Lando is painfully one note and he throws in the names of the various minor characters ("Logray!" "Weequay!" etc.) as if he is shilling for Mattel.On the other hand, Kahn does some nice work with the Luke and Vader characters, especially as they both struggle with the Light and Dark side of the force. Some of his flashback sequences and inner monologues for these two characters are actually quite well written. And he certainly catches the speed and verve of the movies, telling this story in a mere 180 pages. The scenes fly by, and you can almost hear the John Williams score in the background.So at the end of the day, an OK but uneven read. I recognize that the three stars I have given it are as much for the entertaining nature of the original story and my memory of the feelings it produced in me as an adolescent as they are for anything inherently good about the book itself.

Ross Patrick

This is my favorite Star Wars movie and was probably my favorite in book form too. I think Kahn's writing really works with the story and universe because I understood everything much more. The character development, the feelings of the characters, and everything that goes on in the movie that you cant understand in it.

Wuher

Luke Skywalker and Leia Organa managed to get captured during what seems to be an attempt on rescuing a frozen Han Solo from the wall of an evil Hutt crime lord, Jabba. After Luke defeated the dreaded Rancor, Jabba became furious and sent them on a one way trip to the horrid pit of Carkoon. How will the Jedi and his friends manage to escape this one? James Kahn has done it again, another movie adaptation novel that explains the movie close to exact. In Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi published by Del Rey, Kahn manages to perfect the mood and tone of each moment. It also includes 8 stunning full graphic movie screenshot inserts.

Laurel Rockefeller

Of all the Star Wars books, this is the one I have read the most often. In fact, I read it seven times in the first two years after its release. The opening of chapter seven became my first "dramatic interpretation" I performed in a high school level public speaking competition. By then, I had the scene essentially memorized. It's the one where Luke speaks to his father and acknowledges Darth Vader as Anakin Skywalker for the first time. It remains my favorite scene of that trilogy. Naturally the actors changed the scene a little which disappoints me because the book version is so much clearer to me! In the film version, Darth Vader comes off more cold and less conflicted.It's really in the book version that you truly meet Anakin.So please read this! It is so emotionally moving...you feel Anakin's pain so much more with the book than you do with the movie -- especially the special edition which I genuinely do not like. Jedi should make you cry for Anakin. The special edition film removes that sense of loss.The book is better!

Sebastien

Après avoir lu le livre de l'épisode IV j'ai demander à mon père si son amis avait le livre suivant. Il s'informa et comble du malheur, il ne l'avait pas. Je suis dons aller à la bibliothèque et comme je n'avais pas vue les films depuis longtemps et qu'il ne repasseraient pas avant janvier 1993 (ils les passaient toujours dans ce coin là), j'ai demander à la bibliothèque d'avoir le livre qui était après La Guerre des Étoiles. Le commis me sortie alors Le Retour du Jedi. À cette époque je n'avais pas les films sur cassette (ils étaient rare et j'attendais la prochaine diffusion pour avoir une copie) donc dans ma tête j'avais oublier qu'en fait la suite était L'Empire Contre-Attaque. J'ai donc pris la décision de partir avec le livre et m'empresser de le lire par temps libre.Je commence alors la lecture et mon dieu que je trouvais qu'il manquait de background. Han Solo était emprisonner avec Jabba et Luc allait à sa rescousse. Bien que l'auteur décrivait bien en résumer ce qui s'était passé avant, je trouvais l'écart un peu abrupte. J'ai donc continuer sans poser de question, mais quand je suis arriver à la scène avec Yoda, j'ai tout de suite compris que j'avais passer un livre. Je suis donc aller à la bibliothèque pour me rendre compte que le commis ne connaissait pas la série et qu'il pensait qu'il y avait juste 2 livres et qu'ils n'avaient pas le deuxième livre.J'ai donc mis le livre sur pause le temps de revoir les film et ensuite j'ai terminer de lire le livre, qui est à mon avis à la hauteur du film avec les détails en plus. Le film rend très bien le livre et on voit que le livre fut écrit après le film, mais comme l'oeuvre entière de La Guerre des Étoiles, ce livre est un chef d'oeuvre pour les enfants et les ado. Les adulte y trouve aussi leur compte, mais doivent laisser tomber la logique un peu.Donc recommander à toute personne voulant découvrir la science fiction, n'oubliez pas cependant qu'il y a trois livre dans la série de La Guerre des Étoiles.

Christopher Rush

I wanted to do 4.5 stars, but I had to round up. This was a surprisingly enjoyable book. I didn't expect it to be bad, mind you - I was just pleasantly surprised by a lot of details in Kahn's book that aren't in the movie. At times Kahn does go a bit overboard: there's a few "from the depths of this" and "the uttermost that" and some more superlatives that detract more than they add, but they can be easily forgiven and excused. There aren't any new scenes like in the first book, and not a lot of rather drastic differences such like Yoda's description in the second book, but as I said Kahn does add quite a few character description scenes that flesh out the characters quite a bit in a very impressive and enjoyable way. In the Yoda and Luke scene, Kahn's additional dialogue clarified how foolish and wrong Luke was to leave Dagobah and try to save his friends in TESB. Thinking about it, Luke doesn't do anyone any good. It's exactly as Yoda says: he didn't save anyone, they had to save him; he wasn't ready to hear Vader was his father, he wasn't ready for that burden, and having left Yoda and gotten caught up in rescuing Han before completing his training, he couldn't complete his training the best way and instead had to carry that burden alone. Having seen the movies so many times growing up, before I started being what some people would call a "thinking person," it never occurred to me Luke was wrong at the end of TESB. He was totally wrong and suffered grievously for it. Kahn gives us a good deal of Luke's internal struggles throughout the book that don't always come out as well in the movie - Kahn has him dally with the Dark Side a lot more than he appears to in the movie, which makes sense while reading it (and also gives some credence to Dark Empire I and II).Han also gets a great character treatment here. In just a few pages, Kahn clearly lays out the path Han has gone through from the beginning of episode IV to the middle and end of episode VI: looking back at the movies, it's there, but the rapid pace of RotJ doesn't always allow for the internal perspectives Kahn presents, and thus the book is a great supplement, especially for fans of Han. One key scene that gets an extended treatment is the Ewok conference. Instead of just listening to C-3PO and welcoming them in, the Ewoks at first reject them (sort of like a bizarre reversal of the novel/movie version of the Ents in the Two Towers). Han then gives a passionate speech about how he used to be only for himself, and now the friends he has in the rebellion have awaken him to more important things beyond himself. Leia also gives a brief request - she also gets some fine character development, explaining her growing awareness of the Force and her connection to people, nature, and the universe in general. Wicket also gets to make a rousing speech about their necessity for joining the Rebellion. It's a fine scene and not nearly as corny as I've made it out to be (though some wastrels out there will no doubt disparage it, showing us more about their personal mediocrity than about the book itself).Kahn manages to streamline big battle scenes on the moon and in the sky rather well: with rapid dialogue and brief descriptions, we get all the key points of the conflicts without an inundation of details, while still bringing out emotional losses of the Ewoks and fighters. The Ewoks as a whole are treated rather well in the book. Far from being furry little nothings to please only 4-year-olds, Kahn treats the Ewoks will great respect, a very pleasing aspect of the book. They are brave, intelligent, sacrificial, and courageous.Darth Vader also gets important character elaboration in the book. Kahn's paragraphs about the mental workings of Vader are almost essential in understanding the movie (or rather, the whole story of Return of the Jedi). Here's another incident of me not thinking enough about the events and dialogues in the movies. If Vader really wants Luke to help him overthrow the Emperor at the end of ESB, why does he stop Luke from striking him down in RotJ? Kahn explains Vader does want Luke to kill the Emperor, but not until he is fully seduced by the Dark Side. If he kills him too soon, Luke could still return to his friends: Vader needs Luke to wait until he is fully Dark. Makes sense now, really. The final goodbye scene between Luke and Anakin is remarkable. Kahn gives us a great look into the mind of Anakin returning to control for a few brief moments: we experience with him genuine memories, both good and bad, pleasing and heartbreaking. Kahn even tells us about the lava that destroyed Anakin (one of the few continuity bits that makes sense ... unlike Leia's feelings/images about her real mother who apparently died four seconds after she was born). It's a great scene. Anakin feels genuine regret and love for Obi-Wan and his family. It's a remarkable scene, all together: neither Luke nor Anakin says "I love you," which is what you'd expect. Instead, the crux of their resolution is saving Anakin - and now that it is accomplished, and Anakin's good side returns even for a brief moment, Luke was truly right about him: there was still some good in him. Nothing else needs to be said between these two. Kahn humanizes Vader remarkably well in such a short space.A couple of two disappointments, though: 1) Luke does not say "Father, please, help me!" when he is being tortured by Palpatine, which I miss, since it helps cement the relational aspect of Vader's break from the Dark Side (fortunately there isn't Darth Vader shouting "NO!" so it is an aggregate win; 2) instead of seeing Yoda, Ben, and Anakin in their Force images at the end, Luke only imagines he sees them in the firelight at the Ewok celebration. This was more disappointing, but the movie did it right (and by "the movie" I refer, of course, to the original theatrical release with Sebastian Shaw).Despite these two bits, I really enjoyed this book. It moves quickly, just like the movie, but it is a good experience. The characters get fleshed out - even Jerjerrod gets more time, and Lando gets more attention than he does in the film - and generally things make a lot more sense. Even if you are a casual Star Wars fan, you should read this book. You'll be glad you did.

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