The battle for Aquilaris continues, and Jedi Kerra Holt is doing her best to fight the good fight, but she finds it difficult to battle the elements and the desires of the people she is fighting to save. John Jackson Miller writes a story that has some after-school special type moments, but for the most part steps up to the challenge of giving Holt an adventure worthy of a Jedi.
That adventure isn’t quite “Clone Wars” or “Return of the Jedi” type, but it is a Jedi adventure, calling upon force of will, strength in the Force, and Jedi abilities. Miller’s story is more like a smash-up of Han Solo (pre-Rebellion) by-the-seat-of-your-pants adventuring, but with Jedi trimmings.
On the art side of this book, Iban Coello brings a strong sense of storytelling, some nice character work, and keen detail. The detail is enhanced by Michael Atiyeh’s colors, as Atiyeh not only shades the world beyond the grays that Holt is mired in, but adds depth, dust, and dinginess that makes the Star Wars Universe feel lived in and relatable.
Most of the characters in this book are human, but Coello does drop in a few aliens, just to add some context to the universe around Holt and the other lead of the story, relief worker Captain Jenn Devaad. Devaad’s story parallels Holt’s own, but Miller weaves the two together.
Holt and Devaad find a common foe in Zodoh the Hutt. Coello’s Zodoh the Hutt is an odd-looking duck, even for a Hutt. Equipped with a harness that provides bionic arms and shoulder pads that belong in the end zone at an Oakland Raiders game, Zodoh isn’t content to rest on his tail (or whatever it is that Hutts rest on) and actively pursues Devaad in battle.
Miller has carved out a niche for himself in the Star Wars Universe. It’s not an overwhelmingly diverse niche, but it is a storyline that has some legs, offers up some fun, and has room to grow. We’ve got Jedi and Hutts, I’d like to see what else Miller can throw our way.