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Heir to the Empire (Star Wars: The Thrawn Trilogy, #1)
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Heir to the Empire (Star Wars: The Thrawn Trilogy #1)

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4.08 of 5 stars 4.08  ·  rating details  ·  36,279 ratings  ·  1,249 reviews
It's five years after Return of the Jedi: the Rebel Alliance has destroyed the Death Star, defeated Darth Vader and the Emperor, and driven out the remnants of the old Imperial Starfleet to a distant corner of the galaxy. Princess Leia and Han Solo are married and expecting Jedi Twins. And Luke Skywalker has become the first in a long-awaited line of Jedi Knights. But thou ...more
Paperback, 404 pages
Published June 1992 by Bantam Spectra (first published January 1st 1991)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Stephen
A long time 20 years ago, in a galaxy publishing house far, far away looking to suck the monetary marrow out of a popular franchise and develop the next big income stream............
…………………
…………………..

Episode IV Expanded Universe Novel I

A NEW HOPE CASH COW

It is a period of civil war declining profits and brand recognition. A revitalized Star Trek franchise Rebel spaceships, striking from a
hidden base
rival studio Paramount, have won their first victory against the evil Galactic LucasFilm Empir
...more
Werner
May 10, 2008 Werner rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Science fiction (esp. Star Wars) fans
Recommended to Werner by: My brother-in-law, Nelson
Books that are spin-offs or sequels to movies or TV shows (or sometimes direct fictional adaptations, or "novelizations"), as the Thrawn trilogy is, often don't command much critical respect; it's taken for granted by critics that movies can be made by adapting books, and that the results can be great art, but any inspiration that's drawn in the other direction is automatically discounted and the results classified as hack garbage. Like most unthinking prejudices, this one simply shortchanges th ...more
Rob
Executive Summary: Mostly lived up to the hype for me. Certainly more enjoyable than the prequels that Lucas put out, but that's not hard.

Audio book: Do this in audio. Not only is Marc Thompson a great narrator who does a great job with almost all the voices, there is music and sound effects too that makes this more like a radio play than just an audiobook.

There was no way I was going to read this after seeing Marc Thompson did this series, and I was not disappointed.

Full Review
There is a lot o
...more
Alex Ristea
I now understand the hype.

Not only why this trilogy is touted as the definitive Star Wars companion, but why it's an example for all tie-in novels. I'm not the most experienced guy in the world when it comes to this sort of fiction, but I've read enough to recognize when it works and when it doesn't.

Heir to the Empire works so, so well.

This is the Star Wars novel I have been waiting for. One that expands the mythos and makes me excited about the world. It raises more questions than it answers, a
...more
Lee
I stuffed up with this. I havent actually read this one. I read the Hand of Thrawn, so I moved the review over to that book.
Ron
Nov 28, 2008 Ron rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Ron by: Wendell Andrea
Fan fiction as it should be.

Working within established genre, ensemble, history and--to some extent--outcome, Timothy Zahn creates a fresh new story with a cast known and loved by his readers.

Old Star Wars movie cliches sprinkle the tale, but the fans would howl if they weren't. What makes Heir to the Empire worth reading is Zahn's ability to grow the characters and provide a satisfying new experience for the reader.

Of course, like all of its ilk, Heir is less a stand alone novel and more an o
...more
Jonathan

Star Wars and the surrounding paraphernalia is a cultural icon so linked to the modern understanding of sci-fi that few people could recognise a world without its influence. It has been referenced in newspaper headlines and in the Ronald Reagan defence initiative called Star Wars, of the later part of the Cold War. However, few of the expanded universe novelisations or television works have ever lived up to the premise of the initial movies. Perhaps it is the overriding sense of the corrupting i
...more
Edward Guillaume
This was my first Star Wars Expanded Universe book I read, and I don't regret it. When I picked up the space sim "TIE Fighter" back in the 90s I was impressed with the character Grand Admiral Thrawn of the Galactic Empire. Little did I know he was part of Timothy Zahn's Thrawn Trilogy books. So, I have to admit the only reason why I read this book, as well as the other two of the trilogy, was because of the character Grand Admiral Thrawn. Thrawn comes across as a respected military commander, ca ...more
Maik G.
Timothy Zahn's Heir to the Empire, the first volume of a three-book cycle, was almost an instant phenomenon when it was published in hardcover. With its depiction of the continuing battle between what is left of the Galactic Empire and the fledgling New Republic, this novel cleverly mixes the characters from the Classic Trilogy with a cast of newly created heroes and villains, some of whom will make appearances in other authors' Star Wars works.

As Heir to the Empire begins, the New Republic has
...more
Kathryn
I still remember my excitement when, as a *cough*-year-old, I ran across Heir to the Empire at the bookstore. At last, some continuation to the Star Wars story!

I wasn't old enough at the time to be particularly discriminating - it was probably ten years later that I finally swore off the Extended Universe, what with all the Kevin J. Anderson garbage - but I knew I loved Timothy Zahn's work. Heir to the Empire is the first installment in Zahn's celebrated Thrawn Trilogy. Its primary strength is c
...more
Braxton
I'm going to review what I read of the series here. I quit reading midway through the second book. I thought that the story was really drawn out. It almost seemed like it could have been told in two books, but Zahn decided to stretch it out into a trilogy. One of my biggest complaints is how overpowered Admiral Thrawn is as a character. While reading his scenes I couldn't help but wonder how the Empire managed to lose the galactic civil war with this guy on their side. There's no reason why this ...more
Jamie Lott
Timothy Zahn's Heir to the Empire gave us the first fully realized entry into the Star Wars Expanded Universe, and as such, received a great deal of praise. In the fallout of its reception, there exists a lingering question. Does the book stand on its own merits, or is its status simply boosted by association to its parent franchise? Certainly, it's both. Zahn's characters are highly intriguing, from the advanced military mind of Thrawn, who can decipher a species' battle plan just by looking at ...more
Ben Dutton
I’d been reading children’s stories I should have read when I was eleven: Sherlock Holmes, Jules Verne’s adventures – when I came across, in storage, the books I was reading when I was eleven. In fact, Timothy Zahn’s Thrawn Trilogy, appeared the year I turned eleven, and at that age I thought it excellent – so much so I kept buying Star Wars novel right through until 1996, hoping each time that they would be as good as Zahn’s original trilogy. They never were. They say you should never go back: ...more
Crystal Starr Light
"A Jedi can't get so caught up in matters of galactic importance that it interferes with his concern for individual people"
It's had a permanent space on my top books of all time, and there is a reason. Considered by most Star Wars fans to be the best Star Wars Expanded Universe novel and the birth of Expanded Universe itself, Heir to the Empire takes off about 5 years after Return of the Jedi.
Han and Leia are married and expecting twins. Luke is a Jedi Knight. And the New Republic is in its begi
...more
Thom
Heir to the Empire -

The last remaining Grand Admiral of the defeated Empire campaigning against the fragile New Republic? The premise is actually very intriguing, too bad Zahn was the first one to it.

I have to give this book a one-star rating with an "I hate it" stamp. Here's why:


The best of this book is in the plot which is complex (but not notably creative). The story winds through several characters, allowing for a fairly gripping read. There are some fun characters in the book that help to
...more
Mitch Sullivan
I don't care what anyone else thinks, I'm not ashamed to say that this book - and the books that followed it - are what got me into reading in the first place.

For that reason alone, I can't possibly do this justice with a star rating and a quick review. All I'll say is that thanks to Timothy Zahn and his Thrawn Trilogy, I came to love books and experienced a spike in my literacy levels that put me at the top of my class for the rest of my school and university life. Ever since, I've wanted to be
...more
Kelly
Jun 12, 2007 Kelly rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: star wars geeks
Man, did I use to be a nerd. I loved the Zahn trilogy. He's easily the best writer of the canon novels (which gives me away as a bigger nerd). They were geniunely well written books (by fandom standards) with good plotlines, kept to the characters from the movies pretty well. These were bestsellers when they first came out. Everyone was reading them, not just Star Wars crazies. Probably 'cause they were good. Also? I was 12. Shut up. If you're going to geek out on Star Wars, this trilogy is a go ...more
Algernon
[7/10]
Welcome back to the Star Wars francise - one of the most financially succesful business enterprises. The impulse to write the Thrawn series may have come from a need to cash in on the popularity of the original movie series, and the quality of the prose may be pedestrian, but to a hardcore fan like me (I was 13 when I first saw A New Hope ) these considerations matter less than the curiosity about events after the Battle of Endor.

Starting the plot only a few years after said battle, Timot
...more
Andrew
This book was a ton of fun to read. A Galaxy Far, Far Away owes a huge debt to Timothy Zahn for introducing some of its finest characters (ie Grand Admiral Thrawn and Mara Jade). Zahn's style is eminently readable and the pages seem to fly beneath your fingers. The characters here are well-defined, if somewhat static, but you can't really blame the author for this, as the movies had already cemented their personalities and George Lucas wouldn't permit them to change very much at all. Regardless, ...more
Donovan
This review represents the 3 novels in the Thrawn Trilogy:-
Heir to the Empire
Dark Force Rising
The Last Command
*Set 5 years after Return of the Jedi*

This is it!!! The series that reinvigorated the Star Wars Universe. After such a lull following Return of the Jedi and before the tragedy that were the the movie Episode I,II,II Timothy Zahn wrote the first of the novels that captured my imagination again...Heir to the Empire.
It was such a step forward for the Star Wars franchise and I believe a majo
...more
Eric Allen
Star Wars: Heir to the Empire
By Timothy Zahn

A Star Wars Retrospective by Eric Allen

Due to the recent announcements of new Star Wars movies on the horizon, and the recent twenty year anniversary of the books that began the Star Wars Expanded Universe, I thought it fitting to do a retrospective series on Timothy Zahn's trilogy. Though this trilogy is typically called the Thrawn Trilogy by fans, it has no actual name.

A long time ago, in a Junior High School that has since been torn down due to its
...more
Kelli Lee
I so geeked out while reading Heir to the Empire. I mean, for reals. Star Wars and me, we go way, way back to a galaxy far, far away. Sorry, couldn't help myself. I have mad love for George Lucas and his created world. He's a genius. True story: I once asked my mom for a Chewbacca, or a wookie, for Christmas and if not, then an Ewok would do. Han Solo was literally my first crush. Okay, I could seriously go on and on, boring any one who's reading this to tears, so my musings and life-sharing is ...more
Seana
Despite being a Star Wars fan from the very beginning, I had never read a Star Wars book. A co-worker suggest the Thrawn trilogy would be the best place to start, and I was so glad for the tip.

Heir to the Empire picks up not long after the events of Return of the Jedi - The Emperor and Vader are dead (along with most of the elite officers of the Empire), Luke is a full jedi knight, Han & Leia are married and expecting twins, and Lando is up to his old tricks (as a mining administrator on th
...more
Traci
As you may or may not know, I am a huge Star Wars fan. Have been one nearly my whole life. I was 1yrs old when the first movie came out (Episode IV A New Hope) and I might not remember the first time I saw it; but I also don't remember a time that Star Wars wasn't a part of my life.

I had it all. Toys. Action figures. Dolls. Posters. Sleeping bags. T-shirts. If they sold it, I had it.

Growing up “my” princess was Princess Leia. But I also wanted a lightsaber like Luke. And blasters like Han. I w
...more
Josh
Recently I watched the entire Star Wars movie saga for the first time in a while (episodes 1 through 6) and became interested in the expanded universe books. Knowing that this elaborate and painstakingly crafted library of Star Wars fiction had been made largely redundant due to the forthcoming movie I wasn't sure where to start nor was I convinced that the scifi material would be worth a read. My choice in Star Wars fiction certainly exceeded my expectations.

I chose to read HEIR TO THE EMPIRE,
...more
Adam
The Thrawn Trilogy (which I'll review as one unit) is, I can now agree, one of the few indispensable, and actually really worth reading productions of the EU. Zahn gets it all right, and does everything I personally want to see in the EU.

First of all, he pulls off all the important plot and characterization goals he tries to achieve: all of his characters have extremely bad-ass abilities and strengths, but they are not defined by their powers. Thrawn and C'baoth in particular come to mind. Thra
...more
awesomatik.com

Meine Eltern sind Alt-68er und so wurde ich im Geiste von Flowerpower und romantisch-kommunistischer Verklärung erzogen. Das hieß konkret, dass ich kein Fernsehen gucken durfte und nur pädagogisch wertvolles Spielzeug (wenn möglich aus Holz) zur Verfügung gestellt bekam.
He-Man Figuren, Spielzeugwaffen und alles was einem Jungen sonst noch Spaß machen könnte, waren Tabu.
Doch wenn die Eltern außer Hause sind, kann man bekanntlich machen, was man will.

Und so stieß ich eines Tages zufällig auf eine
...more
Noah
I've always been interested in reading Star Wars novels though I've never understood why. I like Luke and Obi Wan, and the whole Jedi idea is cool, but I've never been a fan of the other characters, particularly Leia. But I love epic and books keep on coming out and I thought, hey, why not. Two friends suggested the Thrawn trilogy first and I must say I'm not too impressed.

Written in '92, Heir to the Empire seems to still be riding the wave of Star Wars excitement from movies which were released
...more
Matthew Trevithick
I've been a long fan of the Star Wars Universe. I've grown up watching the movies, playing the games, and, most of all, reading all of the books. All of them. It's been great, to a point, to watch the characters move forward and mature, all in the context of the Star Wars Universe. Leia and Han got married and had three children (Jacen, Jaina, Anakin), Luke marries introduced character Mara Jade, a onetime enemy who worked as a top aide to the Emperor. 3PO and R-2 still make plenty of appearance ...more
David "proud member of Branwen's adventuring party"
“The Force is strong with this book!” (Sorry, couldn’t resist!)

Like many people, I loved Star Wars growing up, and also like many people, the prequel movies pretty much killed any interest I still had in the franchise! But all the talk of Disney producing new Stars Wars movies inspired me to give the novel considered the “official continuation” of the series a chance, and I am so glad I did! Timothy Zahn does a masterful job recapturing the magic of the original three movies. The classic charact
...more
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Goodreads Librari...: Book Misfiled 2 20 Jun 28, 2014 09:29AM  
The Star Wars Stacks: Heir to the Empire discussion 7 16 Mar 24, 2014 12:37PM  
star wars books 18 103 Aug 12, 2013 10:03AM  
The Expanded Univ...: This topic has been closed to new comments. HEIR TO THE EMPIRE - June 2013 Holocronies Book Club 56 54 Jun 24, 2013 08:52PM  
Star Wars #1 Fans: Grand Admiral Thrawn: Hero or villain? 8 53 May 16, 2013 08:37AM  
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Timothy Zahn attended Michigan State University, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in physics in 1973. He then moved to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and achieved an M.S. degree in physics in 1975. While he was pursuing a doctorate in physics, his adviser became ill and died. Zahn never completed the doctorate. In 1975 he had begun writing science fiction as a hobby, and he bec ...more
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