Lucasfilm and Disney have been hard at work creating canon books and comics to complement the new Star Wars movies. Before [Star Wars: Episode VII — The Force Awakens](tag:711158) was released, Aftermath was published, which details the state of the galaxy after the end of the war. Now we're getting a new novel, Bloodline, which focuses on General Leia Organa and her efforts to help establish the New Republic.
Spoilers ahead for The Force Awakens!
Author Claudia Gray explained in the press release that Bloodlines details how Leia Organa went from one of the leaders of the Rebel Alliance to establishing a new era of peace in the galaxy.
"This novel isn't fundamentally about Leia as a wife, sister or mom; this is about the role she's created for herself since the fall of the Empire, and the one she takes up by the time of The Force Awakens."
Leia is one of the most interesting characters in Star Wars: she became a Senator at age 17, and within a year was working as a double agent for the Rebellion. Her bravery and tenacity was hugely instrumental in winning the war against the Empire. Plus, she totally rocks one of the strangest hairstyles in the galaxy...
This new book is really exciting, and not just because we'll get to find out exactly how Leia Organa began the Resistance: we're also going to get crucial plot points about Ben Solo's childhood, and how the First Order rose to power. So without further ado, here's what you can expect from Bloodlines.
Corruption In The New Republic
The Force Awakens did a lot of things really, really well, but unfortunately it was somewhat lacking in world building (uh... galaxy building). The New Republic were briefly mentioned before they were destroyed by The First Order, in what was essentially a reset to the situation of in the original trilogy. Bloodlines will go a long way to answering our questions about the New Republic, like the fact that it was was already corrupt.
In this excerpt, Leia flees for her life from an assassination attempt...
Someone had left this message on her plate, only one word long: RUN. Leia shoved her chair back, instantly leaping to her feet. “We have to get out of here,” she said to the startled senators at the table. “Now. Go!”
Leia didn’t stop. She kept running as hard as she could, never looking back, until... Brilliant light. A roar so loud it resonated in her skull. And hot air and debris slamming into her, knocking her down, rolling her over, erasing the world.
The book Before The Awakening also contained hints that the New Republic was corrupt, and now we're going to find out exactly how that lead to the rise of the First Order....
How The First Order Rose To Power
In the full cover of Bloodlines, we see Darth Vader's silhouette. This implies that the book will deal with Leia's darker side: after all, she is the daughter of Vader himself.
Vader's legacy is alive and well in Bloodlines, as the First Order form from the ashes of the Empire. And it looks like there's one person who's making that happen: Leia's new nemesis, Ransolm Casterfo. This New Republic senator is obsessed with the Empire, even "collecting artifacts" and propaganda. Perhaps Casterfo was the one to salvage Darth Vader's helmet, which Kylo Ren has in The Force Awakens? But this isn't the only hint we have about Star Wars' new villain...
Ben Solo's Childhood
We're actually going to see Ben Solo as a child in Bloodlines, which is crucial to solving the mystery of how he became Kylo Ren. The Force Awakens novel already revealed that Supreme Leader Snoke was watching Ben from childhood, and it's probable we'll get some hints in Bloodlines about how Leia's son was corrupted by the Dark Side.
Bloodlines will go a long way to explaining how Leia and Han Solo lost control of their son. And who knows, maybe we'll even catch a glimpse of that ellusive Luke Skywalker, as Bloodlines is set before Luke went into hiding!
All in all, this novel will contain a plethora of hints about the plot of the new Star Wars films, as well as giving us plenty of Leia Organa being a complete badass!
And honestly, who doesn't want more of that?