Vince The Prince

Top 10 Best Star Wars Books

Since making its monumental debut in 1977, Star Wars has shaped our culture and way of life with some of the most memorable characters and storylines ever created in cinema. But, the story doesn’t end once the credits roll. There are so many great adventures and characters to explore in this universe. And that’s why I decided to make a listicle of the best Star Wars books that have been written around the 9 episode film series.

Now, some of these titles may look familiar, especially if you’re a passionate Star Wars fan who has made it point to go beyond the movie plots over the years. But whether you’ve read or have yet to read these books, just know, this listicle is meant to briefly highlight and review, nothing more. I merely set the table and leave it up to you to delve deeper. No spoilers.

So, with that in mind, let’s make the jump to hyperspace!

1. The Mandolorian Armor (1998)

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This was actually my first Star Wars book ever and I’ll always have it on the top of my list. It’s funny to think about how relevant this book has become even years later, partly due to the success of the new ‘Mandolorian’ series. Now, you may have seen this book referenced in another blog of ours, but I just couldn’t resist the opportunity to briefly touch on it once again.

First released in 1998, author, K.W. Jeter gives readers their first look at the bounty hunter life through the eyes of the most feared hunter in the galaxy...Boba Fett! Set shortly after Jabba the Hutt’s sail barge is destroyed, the story focuses on Boba, after escaping from the Sarlacc’s Great Pit of Carkoon, and another bounty hunter named Dengar. As the story continues, Jeter allows readers to follow and learn more about the character, and his motivation, by using various parallel narratives and flashbacks throughout the story. 

As the first book in what would become a three-part series, Mandolorian Armor helps to fill some gaps and add some much-needed color to Boba’s origin. This is an absolute must-read for Fett fans!

2. Heir to the Empire (1992)

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When Timothy Zahn’s, Heir to the Empire, was released to readers in 1992, Star Wars fans were immediately captured by the story and how it extended the universe. In fact, there are many who consider this book to be the true sequel to the original trilogy. Heir of the Empire served as the first installment to what would eventually become known as the Thrawn series. The story takes place five years after the events of Return of the Jedi and gives readers their first of many encounters with the trilogy’s main villain, Grand Admiral Thrawn. 

Heir to the Empire keeps true to the format and feel of the original Star Wars universe by introducing readers to a fresh story that features both new and original characters. The book also does a fine job of mixing in some interesting political intrigue as well, which sets the stage for future plot points in the books and films that would follow. All in all, this is the book that revamped the Star Wars series.

3. Lost Stars (2015)

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Claudia Gray’s Lost Stars does a great job of telling an original story and making it fit perfectly in an already complex Star Wars chronicle. Using the events of the first Star Wars trilogy as the backdrop, Lost Stars tells the story of Ciena Ree and Thane Kyrell. We follow Ree and Kyrell as they start out as childhood friends and eventually grow up to be on opposing sides of the war. With one becoming an Imperial office and the other becoming a Rebel pilot, Gray creates something that’s reminiscent to that of Romeo and Juliette. Well…sort of. 

Make no mistake, this is not Shakespeare in space by any means, but there are some underlying themes that remind me of the oldest love story ever told. Overall, Gray is a master at playing virtual tennis with the reader’s emotions, as the story goes back and forth between both characters and they’re chosen paths. Whether or not they choose to rekindle or deny their romantic connection is something I’ll let you discover for yourself. Again, no spoilers here!

4. Darth Plagueis (2012)

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If you’ve always been curious about how Palpatine became the Emperor, this book should be on your list as well. You may remember that the Plagueis character was briefly mentioned in one of the prequel films. The story introduces readers to two powerful Sith Lords: Darth Plagueis and his apprentice, Darth Sidious (Palpatine). Sounds pretty funny, right? I mean, Sidious as the apprentice?! Author James Luceno takes readers down a dark path as he focuses on both Sith Lords and their plan to overtake the Republic and destroy the Jedi. 

This is a well-written and entertaining novel that fills a lot of holes left by the prequel films. Luceno has a knack for outlining the true power of the Dark Side, which translates to Plagueis’ goal of immortality. We also get to see how Sidious was able to turn Count Dooku to the Dark Side, which makes for another interesting story arc down the line. Sidious’ power and manipulative ways had to be learned somewhere, from someone, and that’s what/who this book is all about!

5. The Paradise Snare (1997)

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This novel is another first in a series/trilogy of Han Solo origin books. The Paradise Snare presents us with a teenaged version of Solo and how he came to be the daring and bold character that we see portrayed in films and other books. From escaping a hard upbringing as an orphan to entering the imperial academy, this book gives readers a better understanding of Solo’s psyche and the experiences that drive him to become one of the best pilots in the galaxy.

Author A.C. Crispin makes this story easy to read and follow, as it introduces a host of new characters and key plot points that nicely set the stage for the rest of the series. By using various flashbacks throughout the story, Crispin connects the dots, so to speak, between Solo’s early, shady childhood and the actions he takes as a late teen. You should definitely give this one a read if you ever have the chance! 

6. Phasma (2017)

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First introduced to audiences in The Force Awakens, Phasma has developed into a rather interesting character for fans, which is why author Delilah S. Dawson decided to make the character the focal point of her book. It’s Phasma’s mystique and imposing presence that makes us want to know more about the character’s origin. We’re finally given the chance to pull back the curtain, so to speak, through the pages of Dawson’s novel.

After being captured by the First Order, and put under interrogation by a stormtrooper captain,  a resistance spy named Vi is forced to reveal the origins of Captain Phasma. From there, Vi narrates the story and introduces us to an earlier version of Phasma and how she came to be the leader of a small group of warriors on her home planet of Parnassos. Later on, Vi details how Phasma and her warriors once escorted General Brendol Hux and his troops back to his ship after crash landing on Parnassos. Inevitably, the group endures a series of brutal hardships and betrayals along the way. But, the journey seems to mold Phasma into the tough, merciless warrior that we see portrayed in the movies. 

7. Dark Disciple (2015)

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Christie Golden’s novel is set after the events of the Clone Wars series and follows former Sith Lord Asajj Ventress. Now a bounty hunter, the story picks up Asajj’s story where it left off and introduces audiences to a new adventure with a few familiar faces along the way. One of the most significant characters to return is Jedi, Quinlan Vos. In fact, Vos plays a key role in the story as he and Asajj team up to carry out a deadly mission: the assassination of Count Dooku.

Fans of the Clone War sage seem to hold this novel in high regard, as the story reads with the same amount of excitement as the televised series. It also helps when a strong plot and cast of characters serve as the driving force behind the plot, which is what Clone Wars fans are used to by now.

8. Leia: Princess of Alderaan (2017)

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Claudia Gray makes a triumphant return to the Star Wars universe with this beautiful backstory. The plot gives us a closer look at the teenage years of Princess Leia and how she proved herself worthy of the throne. By presenting Leia as a 16-year-old on her home planet of Alderaan, Gray gives audiences the chance to dig deeper into Leia’s past and all that she had to go through in order to fulfill her destiny as heir to the throne. 

We follow young Leia as she takes on new challenges, (physically and politically) all while her peaceful home planet is under constant threat from the Empire. But this is not just a tale of how she came to earn the crown. Princess of Alderaan shows us how Leia developed her sharp personality and strong will to bring peace to the galaxy. Much like her brother!

9. Darth Maul (2001)

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I’ve been a fan of this character ever since he first stepped foot on the big screen. Much like other fans of the series, I wanted to know more about this complex, menacing character. Thankfully, there are series episodes and books that are dedicated to this character’s story. And Darth Maul: Shadow Hunter is one of them. 

In this book, we learn more about Maul and his motives, pre-Episode Ⅰ, as he carries out a mission at the behest of the Emperor. Specifically, a mission that requires him to hunt down a traitor who’s threatening to reveal the Emperor’s plan to bring down the Republic. Of course, this mission comes with its fair share of challenges along the way, which puts Maul’s skills to the test.

Overall, Shadow Hunter is an interesting, action-packed read. It does a fine job of telling us more about a character that’s been constantly shrouded in mystery and grossly underused. Until now, that is!  

10. Revenge of the Sith (2005)

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This is a shining example of when a book is better than the film. In fact, I owned this book as well. I know, I know, the prequels weren’t the most popular films in the saga, but when you’re an 11-year-old kid, you’ll buy anything that has Darth Vader on the cover. To my surprise, the novel version of the story is actually more intriguing than the movie, even to this day. 

Author Mathew Stover does a solid job of setting up and telling the story of how Anakin Skywalker was seduced by the power of the Dark Side. Ultimately, we witness the falling out between Anakin and Obi-Won, which then leads to the inevitable birth of Darth Vader, (and two other important characters, who would lead the saga from this point on). 

Stover adds more layers to the story as well, by expanding on the characters' different emotions and motives, which is something that the film seems to skimp on. The book has more room for these key details, as it isn’t bound by the same limitations and time constraints as the movie was. 

So, what’s your favorite Stars Wars book? If it’s not on the list, post the title in the comments below. And, if you like this post, perhaps we can merge our passion for Star Wars and video games to make another listicle. Sound like something you’d be interested in? Let me know your thoughts on that as well. 

Also, don’t forget to check out and shop our one of a kind Star Wars-inspired gaming gear as well. So, pop over to our website whenever you have the chance and see if anything catches your eye. May the force be with you!

Until we meet again,

Vince the Prince

Author: Vince The Prince best books listicle Star Wars Star Wars Books top 10 top Star Wars Books Vince the Prince


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