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Star Wars: Shadow Games (Star Wars)

4.14 of 5 stars 4.14  ·  rating details  ·  743 ratings  ·  62 reviews

Javul Charn is the most famous pop star in the galaxy—and the runaway bride of a violent lieutenant in Black Sun, the crime syndicate commanded by Prince Xizor. Or so Javul says. Soon after Dash Rendar, broke and desperate, agrees to be Javul’s bodyguard, he realizes that openness is not her strong suit—and that murder is stalking he...more
ebook, 400 pages
Published November 29th 2011 by Random House Publishing Group (first published January 1st 2011)
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Crystal Starr Light
Dash Rendar, with Nautolan copilot, Eaden Vrill and droid, Leebo, is in a bit of a sticky situation: a recent Kessel Run and a run-in with Imperials have left his ship, the Outrider, a bit of a mess. Now he needs to scrape up some money to pay for the repairs, but where is a pilot without a ship going to find work? Javul Charn solves that problem—she says she has an obsessive fan on her tail and needs bodyguard work. Only, once Dash, Eaden, and Leebo join Javul’s crew, they quickly find out that...more
This one turned out really good. The authors really got Han Solo right. The is the first time I've read a novel involving Han in which the book portrayal matched the original Harrison Ford movie version.

The primary protagonist left something to be desired but the rest of the characters were great. If Dash had been more complicated I think I would have been willing to give it five stars. I would give it 4.4 stars if the option was available because my issues with Dash don't warrant a full point o...more
Shadow Games was, as Star Wars novels go, merely mediocre. It was an interesting premise: go outside the normal realm of seedy criminals, warriors, and aristocracy and look at some mainstream pop culture - holostars. Of course, this seemed too good to be true, and was, since the holostar business turns out to be nothing more than a theme, a novel setting for the same old saving-the-galaxy amid plenty of tense violence story. The fact that Charn was a performer figured into the story in logistica...more
Bane of Kings
Original Post:

Now and then, I like to read the occasional Star Wars novel. I’ve been interested in reading Shadow Games, one of Arrow’s newer Star Wars titles for quite some time now, and when I brought it a few days ago in Waterstones along with a couple of other books I cracked it open and began to read. And, I found the novel to be quite enjoyable. Really, I did – it was a fun, space-opera romp that allows me to continue saying that all the Star Wars n...more
John Davis
A bit slow going at first, but once all the characters and plots are in place the story becomes a page turner in true Reeves Star Wars story telling fashion. Jedi and Sith are in the background of the story for this one. Story takes place just before the events in "A New Hope" with some familiar names like Dash Rendar, Han Solo and a few others. I love Reeves' ability to introduce very human and likeable droid characters and this one turns out no differently with the side kick droid Leebo. The b...more
Jim C
A book that takes place in the EU. This book's time setting is right before A New Hope . Dash Rendar is hired to be a bodyguard of a singer who is being targeted and he soon discovers that things are not what they seem. In this adventure, he gets help from Han Solo.

The first half of the book was slow and did not have the Star Wars feeling. It felt like I was reading The Bodyguard instead of reading a space adventure. That does change and that is when this book became exciting. The last half of...more
Steven Shinder
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This is my first Star Wars novel by either of these authors, and I'm pretty happy with them. The galaxy from the point of view of touring musicians is something that we haven't seen before, and it works. Dash Rendar is a good choice of protagonist, since he's a known character with minimal established backstory. I will say that his depiction here didn't seem to square with that in Shadows of the Empire; maybe we're supposed to believe that he became really jaded in the few ensuing years.

While I...more
Eric Mccann
I really didn't expect much from this - it's a star wars book, which generally leads to disappointment with few exceptions of late.

However, this one kept things going fairly well, with a bit of mystery and adventure as the backstory of a singer in need of protection unfolds for Dash Rendar.

But, of course... they throw Han Solo in. Not for the cameo near the beginning, which, ok, fine, gives us some timeframe with the movies, and was fine, but to help "save the day." I'd love to have books in th...more

This book just didn't do it for me. I was never caught up in the story. It never drew me in and held me in suspense like most of the other Star Wars books I've read. Another problem I had with it is the style in which it was written. Far too verbose for me. Some sentences seemed downright laughable. I quote: "The approaching ship was stealth black, so light-sucking fuliginous that it registered on Dash's wonky perception as a hole in space." And there are better ways to describe "very dark" tha...more
Jake Scholl
In celebration of May the 4th (May the Force), or as known to people everywhere as Star Wars Day, I thought I would post the review of a recent Star Wars book I finished. I had been longing to read a Sci-fi novel for awhile ironically.

I am far behind in the Star Wars expanded universe (I haven’t read a Star Wars book since Jr. High), so I found a book that takes place before Episode IV.

Shadow Games is about a smuggler named Dash Rendar. Right after he tries to beat Han Solo’s time on the Kesse...more
Christopher Lutz
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This novel had a good vibe to it at certain points, but was ultimately weighed down by lengthy go-nowhere scenes that took away from other parts which were stronger (yet not strong enough). The vibe I'm talking about concerns the fun and humour embodied in the characters of Han Solo and Dash Rendar, with a story taking place right before the 'Episode 4' movie. It showed a lot of promise within the first few chapters, with both smuggler/pirates appearing early to set the stage for some good jokes...more
If you like your sci fi mysteries heavy on the technical side, this is the book for you. However, I am not one of those people. The authors took what could have been an interesting whodunnit and filled it with schematics (I can't tell you how many time the characters talked about schematics) and characters acting against any sort of self preservation instinct in order to move the plot along. Also major plot points frequently hinge on technicalities. What fun!

Why would you continue to help keep a...more
Jim Corbiere
I found this one to be very enjoyable. The characters were well written and believable. Plenty of surprises. I found that the author did a great job writing Han Solo's character. So many of the authors who write Star Wars novels seem to get Han wrong...or off a bit. Not in this one though. I find that Michael Reaves really does a great job and adds a lot to the Star Wars Universe. If you like Jedi/Sith, lightsabers, the Force then this novel isn't for you. In fact, there are no Jedi or Sith in t...more
I picked it up mostly because I remembered Dash Rendar from The Shadows of the Empire, a book that I absolutely adore. This one turned out to be, well, ok. The beginning was so heavy with technical jargon and specifications of ships that I was tempted to put it down. However it got more interesting later on.
All in all, not the best SW book I've read but not the worst either.
It seems that the world's obsession with celebrities has even made its way into space operas; the focus of Shadow Games is an intergalactic pop star, which I have never seen in all my experiences with Star Wars. It almost seemed like something out of a Disney Channel Original Movie instead of a George Lucas creation. Handling Star Wars in such a way may sound like a bit of a strain, and it is, but this book wasn't terrible. If you've read all the well-known Star Wars novels, such as the Thrawn/H...more
Kerri Simpson
I loved reading it. I enjoyed Dash character ansmd he is now one of my favorite EU ones. The story was pretty interesting and I enjoyed the plotline. Of course I love characters from starwars that are ahem more of the scoundrel type. lol. Definitely a good book to read.
Javul Charn is a pop star traveling the galaxy and somebody wants to kill her. Dash Rendar needs the money to repair his ship. Is it just an overzealous fan--or is there more behind this than she is willing to tell. Even Han Solo gets called in to unravel this mystery
I approached this book with trepidation, not having been too impressed with Reaves's other Star Wars efforts and worried that I'd be introduced to a bunch of characters in a one-off book I'd have to make an effort to somewhat care about.
BUT I had fun reading this. It wasn't terribly "mysterious," so I advise against thinking it will be. There were a few familiar characters to add interest, some new characters I grew to like, and some great dialog. Even funny at times!
In terms of plot/story, the...more
A pretty good book overall, but only pretty good. It was fun reading more about Dash Rendar (unfortunately the last time I played/read Shadows of the Empire was about 15 years ago). My problem with this book was that I was constantly being taken out of Star Wars, in addition to some really wonky physics. Lots of idioms that aren't 'star warsy' kept popping up such as saying someone had "a lot of moxie". Also, their hyperspace drive goes out in between systems and they just continue on with only...more
Dear Star Wars authors: Please note, if I am reading a Star wars novel, I do not need to see the iconic movie characters making appearances to remember that I'm reading a Star Wars novel.

I enjoyed Reaves' earlier series, Coruscant Nights, so this book was a letdown. I was also looking forward to seeing more of Dash Rendar, but at no point in this novel did the protagonist feel like THE Dash Rendar that has been a fan-favorite character since Shadows of the Empire.

Overall, I hate to admit how muc...more
"Shadow Games" is a first rate Star Wars novel. It is about one of those lesser known Star Wars Universe characters, Dash Rendar, a kind of Han Solo. Rendar, I think, has been in one other Star Wars Novel and it is nice to see his character a little more fleshed out in "Shadow Games." Rendar, due to circumstances beyond his control, has reluctantly agreed to become a body guard for a Galactic entertainer named Juval Charn. The plot takes numerous unexpected twists and turns after that, of which...more
This is the best Star Wars book I've read in a while. It's kind of a mystery though solving they mystery is not too hard.
Great change of pace from the normal type of Star Wars novel.
Robert Carlberg
I really enjoyed this book. Really like the character of Dash Rendar, and would hope to see more written about him. Granted this book is about 2 years old now, but after reading about him in Shadows of the Empire I was hoping to see more. The story itself was pretty good. Has some bad run-in with the imps and his ship gets messed up. Can't pay for repairs so he goes looking for a job, and gets hired on as a security chief for a holostar. The things get pretty mixed up after that, but won't tell...more
I'm still reading it, but not the best first Star Wars book. This is my first, and it's only relation to Star Wars is the setting. One or two characters are mentioned, but that's about it. Basically a smuggler is the head of security for a pop star. There's a stalker. This book doesn't really grab me. It might be interesting for someone interested in a government career. It might also interest someone who has read Star Wars books before and knows what to expect. Please don't read this book for y...more
This book was decent. It was billed as a Star Wars "thriller" but the tone wasn't that much different than a lot of other star wars books. For instance, the star wars horror novels had a definitely different feel to them whereas this didn't. It was hard to follow at times because of all the unfamiliar character names. It was nice that at least Han Solo was in it to provide some continuity to the rest of the galaxy. It was a good book but nothing spectacular.
Mystery and intrigue in the star wars universe. It was awesome!
The first Star Wars book I've read in 4 years was a good welcome back to the fold. Set just before A New Hope this is a prequel of sorts to Shadows of the Empire, showing a little more of Dash Rendar and everyone's favourite smuggler, Han.

An entertaining tale, there was nothing really original about it, but it was fun nonetheless. I look forward to reading the rest of the Star Wars books I've neglected these past couple years.
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Micheal Reeves is an Emmy Award-winning television writer and screenwriter whose many credits include Star Trek: The Next Generation, Twilight Zone, Batman: The Animated Series; and Gargoyles. His novels include the New York Times bestseller STAR WARS: Darth Maul - Shadowhunter and the forthcoming STAR WARS: Death Star. He has written a book called Interworld with Neil Gaiman. He's also written sh...more
More about Michael Reaves...
Shadow Hunter (Star Wars: Darth Maul, #2) Shadows Over Baker Street Death Star (Star Wars) Battle Surgeons (Star Wars: Clone Wars, #4) (Medstar, #1) Jedi Twilight (Star Wars: Coruscant Nights, #1)

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