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Star Wars - Episode I: The Phantom Menace (Star Wars: Novelizations #1)

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3.54  ·  Rating Details ·  12,315 Ratings  ·  450 Reviews
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away, an evil legacy long believed dead is stirring. Now the dark side of the Force threatens to overwhelm the light, and only an ancient Jedi prophecy stands between hope and doom for the entire galaxy.

On the green, unspoiled world of Naboo, Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn and his apprentice, Obi-Wan Kenobi, arrive to protect the realm’s youn
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Paperback, 255 pages
Published March 2nd 2000 by Arrow (first published 1999)
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Popular Answered Questions

Julie The one by Patricia Wrede is the junior novelization. The one by Terry Brooks is for older readers.
Liz Tailor And now it's the first book of the new canon of novels as well, since Disney disbanded all the old stories and made them Legends. So it is now the…moreAnd now it's the first book of the new canon of novels as well, since Disney disbanded all the old stories and made them Legends. So it is now the first book (If you look at it from that point of view) ;)(less)

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Ron
Dec 31, 2015 Ron rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Star Wars die hards
Recommended to Ron by: Wendell Andrea
This is the first time I've read a book written "based on" a movie. Not a bad effort. In some ways better than the movie because the reader is taken inside the point-of-view characters. Terry Brooks, of course, is an accomplished author and did not hurt his reputation with this novel.

One major shortcoming of both book and movie (and therefore probably Lucas', rather than Brook's, fault) came into clearer focus in the book. No one recognized Padme as Amidala until she reveals herself. Not Anakin,
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Mason
Sep 30, 2015 Mason rated it it was ok
Shelves: star-wars
2.5 Stars
As a stand-alone sci-fi novel, this is completely functional despite being slightly boring and the many issues I have with the overly quick pacing. 280 pages for the return of a thrilling sci-fi saga? Really?

As a Star Wars novel however, this is leagues better than the movie it's based upon, which I guess is the curse of Star Wars novels, at least the prequels. It adds so much more to the characters of Anakin and Padme, really choosing to focus on them; whereas in the movie, the main ch
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Crystal Starr Light
Jul 23, 2010 Crystal Starr Light rated it liked it
Shelves: star-wars
"The opinions of others whether you agree with them or not are something you have to learn to tolerate"
Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan, two Jedi knights (well, one is a Master, the other his Padawan, but who's counting?), are surreptitiously sent to Naboo to negotiate a treaty to put an end to the blockade the Trade Federation has on the planet. But negotiations are short when the Neimoidians try to kill them and now the Jedi try to get Queen Amidala, ruler of Naboo, to Coruscant, to spur the Republic into
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Kevis Hendrickson
May 08, 2009 Kevis Hendrickson rated it liked it
Although it isn't going to set yor pants on fire, the novelization of The Phantom Menace is actually quite a good book. One of the reasons why many people disliked the film version of The Phantom Menace is because the film didn't focus on its main character, Anakin Skywalker, who would one day become the future Lord of the Sith, Darth Vader. In the book, however, the story hones in on Anakin, and explores his life as a slave, laying down the narrative foundation for us to understand why Anakin ...more
Michael
Aug 09, 2012 Michael rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 7 year olds with no life
There's an interesting re-edit of Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace out there, called The Phantom Edit. It's one person's edit of the original movie, with as much of the moronic Jar-Jar, annoying Anakin, and redundant storyline removed as possible. It's an improvement, though the movie still falls far short of the original trilogy.

Unfortunately, this book goes in the opposite direction. The author expounds on both the Jar-Jar and the Anakin idiocy, often taking it to extremes (for example,
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Anthony
Considering this is based on a movie that has some pretty bad dialogue and some serious pacing issues, it isn't actually that bad of a read. It's a pretty quick read, which is also good because nothing feels too drawn out, and it also lets you into the characters heads a bit more.
Bram
May 27, 2009 Bram rated it really liked it
I'm going to play the ultimate nerd contrarian and admit that I love this movie and novelization. It's probably just heavy nostalgia for one of my last pre-puberty summers, but I'm ok with that.
Nienke
May 23, 2016 Nienke rated it really liked it
Shelves: 4-stars
“In this life you're often born one thing and die another. You don't have to accept that what you're given when you come in is all you'll have when you leave.”

With this being said by an old pilot, we witness Anakin's change of life right before our eyes. From being a slave on a desert planet he becomes a new Padawan-learner at the age of nine. Which is, in terms of the Council, old, but destined to be the Chosen One, the Council accepts him. Therefore, he should be the one to bring balance to
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Benjamin Stahl
A Heartbreak Hipster Review

A long, long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away ...
I was a shy, meek, slightly confused nine-year-old virgin. It was all a very long time ago ... "but only if you measure it in years".
Pokémon cards were the primary source of one's superiority; sharing a bedroom with a bunch of other boys was not yet an eyebrow-raiser; the prospect of working through the holidays was little more than a sick joke; and 'Star Wars: The Phantom Menace' was the greatest movie of all time.
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Lola
After seeing the Star Wars movies for the first time last year I decided I wanted to read the books of the prequel series as well and bought the omnibus edition with the three prequel books. I finally got around to reading the first book and it's a great way to revisit the story and experience it in a different way. I think this is the first time I read a book after I've seen the movie. It was an interesting experience, instead of visualizing the characters myself I saw the actors and landscapes ...more
Sarah
3,5 Sterne

Als begeisteter Star Wars Fan seit meiner frühesten Kindheit konnte ich natürlich nicht einfach daran vorbei gehen, als ich sah, dass die Bücher zu den Filmen im schicken neuen Design neu aufgelegt wurden. Ich hatte noch nie einen Roman der direkt nach einem Film geschrieben wurde gelesen, wollte das aber gerne mal ausprobieren - und schwupps war “Star Wars, Episode I: Die dunkle Bedrohung“ als Rezensionsexemplar angefragt.

Mein erster Eindruck zu dem Buch war erst einmal positive Über
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Iset
Aug 07, 2011 Iset rated it liked it
Shelves: star-wars
Let us cover the skill and style of writing in question first, before we come to my quibbles over certain plot elements which were, to be fair, mostly Lucas’ fault and nothing to do with the author of this book who has only faithfully followed Lucas’ vision. Obviously any author who is writing the novelisation of a film is under pressure to produce something that is not just an exact replica word for word of the lines in the script. It is very obvious that this has been a major consideration of ...more
Brandt
Jun 24, 2016 Brandt rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, scifi, star-wars
This is a pretty solid adaptation from Terry Brooks who is most known for his Shannara novels. These sorts of adaptations can be insights as to how the eventual movie gets made. For instance, did George Lucas really intend to start The Phantom Menace off with a pod race? That's how Brooks presents it to us, and while it does work in the novel, it probably would have vilified The Phantom Menace for Star Wars fans more so than it already is. (It's honestly not that bad of a movie folks--it's no At ...more
Jenna
Jun 08, 2015 Jenna rated it it was ok
Shelves: star-wars-nerd
About as good as its source material, which is not saying much. I found myself bored through most of this. The parts in the movie that don't really further the plot (eg pod race, space battle at the end) are at least pretty to look at on screen; that doesn't translate well to words on a page. And the changes from the film dialogue generally make it more awkward and unbelievable (Anakin's repeated announcement about his future with Padme, for example).

The Darth Plagueius book did a good job of fl
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Liz Tailor
Mar 01, 2016 Liz Tailor rated it really liked it
Shelves: star-wars
I really enjoyed this book! It's a great edition to the Star Wars expanded universe, both new and Legends. Though I could have used less Gungans...always less Gungans!

You get a lot more from Anakin than you do in the movie which helps to add to his ultimate journey to the Dark Side. His relationship with Padme seems far less creepy and more intentional.

And the tension between Yoda and Qui-Gonn was really palpable in the book, while it's only sort of hinted at in the movie.

All in all, I really
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ade_reads
Aug 04, 2016 ade_reads rated it it was amazing
I Love the book and the movie. And this book is basically the same as the film, except greatly expanded. And, of course, the book allows us to get into the heads of the characters and find out what they are thinking. The best thing about the novelization is the added scenes, the scenes cut from the film, and the background information.
Richard
Mar 24, 2013 Richard rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
With the Phantom Menace being by far the weakest of the Star Wars movies it took me a while to get around to reading the book, but I was pleasantly surprised how good it was.

Firstly having the thoughts and feelings of the POV characters really helps connect to them.

Seeing Anakin’s POV makes him a much more likeable character than he is in the first movie (plus you don’t have to put up with the bad acting). His love of Padmé comes across more in this book than the movie, making his feelings that
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Annika
Vorweg, ich bin ein richtiger Star-Wars-Freak und wollte jetzt endlich die Bücher lesen. Episode I war sowieso...nicht mein Lieblingsteil, deswegen habe ich so gut wie keine Erwartungen gehabt.
Dennoch hat es mich sehr fasziniert, Einblicke in Anakins Gedanken und Gefühle zu bekommen. Auch Obi-Wan, Qui-Gon und Padmé erscheinen mir viel sympathischer und authentischer. Generell hat es mich sehr fasziniert, das Filmgeschehen in Form eines Buch zu lesen.
Naja, trotzdem aber hat mich das Buch überhaup
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Jay
Mar 01, 2016 Jay rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Star Wars fans
As a novelization, this one is pretty good! Brooks does a nice job of expanding on the characters and situations from the screenplay to create new scenes and deeper, more well-rounded characters. A lot of this book is told from Anakin's perspective and that adds quite a bit to the story. It's nice to see how he's thinking and experiencing the events that will change his life forever. There's a long sequence in which Anakin travels deep into the Jundland Wastes to trade with the Jawas that really ...more
Manni
Feb 02, 2015 Manni rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tämä oli oikeastaan yllättävän hyvä. Olen aina pitänyt pimeän uhkaa elokuvana ihan hyvänä, mutta kirjana tämä on astetta parempi.

Anakin on tässä miljoona kertaa kiinostavampi kuin samaisessa elokuvassa ja luokattoman näyttelijäsuorituksen ollessa poissa pidin tuosta 11 vuotiasta Anakinista. Anakin on myös paljon enemmän esillä tässä kirjassa. Itseasiassa Anakin on eniten esillä kirjan aikana ja koko kirja alkaa hänestä. Qui-Gon Jinn oli myös tässä kirjassa paaaljon kiinostavampi kuin elokuvassa
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R
Feb 12, 2009 R rated it really liked it
Better effort, in many ways, than the holes left by the screenplay; more meat to the story, and a few fewer of those loose ends Lucas is so (in)famous for leaving in his universe.
All in all a thoroughly enjoyable read, even if you have seen the movie first ;)

Actually, you will enjoy the movie more, after reading this novel, as you will feel as though you know more about what is 'really' going on and some of the motivation behind some of the characters.
Brooks' attempts to cover up some of the *ah
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Hasini (Ink On Paper)
I watched the movie before I read this and I still loved this! And I know that I'm reviewing this book way too late, but I honestly don't care because a novelization of a saga as amazing as this one must have a review on my blog! Haha!

I'm pleasantly surprised by how much more substance Brooks' writing gave to the movie! Granted, I knew what was gonna happen in the whole series, but I was really into the book series as well! Surprise, surprise! Haha!

I just loved how much more personality and hist
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Amalia Dillin
Feb 17, 2016 Amalia Dillin added it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Never
Shelves: got-it
So. I don't think the blame for the awfulness of this book rests at all on Mr. Brooks' shoulders. Let's just make that clear up front. The writing itself is not bad, given what he had to work with. The STORY, Characters, and everything else is just Terrible. Reading the novelization, without the distraction of the special effects and flashy action sequences makes it that much clearer. Too often, the answer to "why would this character do this?!" or "why did totally obvious solution x not occur ...more
Karen
Mar 18, 2008 Karen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, audio
**This review is for the abridged audio version of the Terry Brooks novelization**

I should start by saying that as a previously lifelong fan of Star Wars who no longer called herself a fan after the brutal prequel trilogy, I was pretty convinced I wasn't going to like the audio book either. That being said, a 3-star rating for Phantom Menace really says something for Terry Brooks' novelization. I got more from the story than I did the movie, for sure.
The voice acting is decent although a few of
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David
Feb 02, 2011 David rated it did not like it
Terry Brooks, how could you? I've enjoyed many of his books before, but this book SUCKED! Okay, I know it wasn't his fault. This was just a novelization and there was only so much he could do, but just say no Terry! I know the temptation to have any involvement with the Star Wars series is huge, but this is too much to ask. It sucked and he knew it was going to suck. I'd rather read this than watch the movie, but I'd still vastly prefer slowly crushing every bone in my body with a ball peen ...more
C.
May 28, 2012 C. rated it did not like it
Shelves: sci-fi
This book, to me, was mostly a pointless rehash of a mediocre (at best) movie, but without the impressive special effects that made the movie worth seeing...once.

I read this only because my sister claimed it would would make me like Jar-Jar, or at least empathize with him. It did not. I would rather the Jedis had to carry around a bucket of feces than have Jar-Jar tag along with them. It would have been funnier than Jar-Jar's so called catch-phrase spouting comic relief, and it would have been o
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Elizabeth
Jul 27, 2016 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was basically a replica of the movie and there was hardly any difference between the two except for you got some character's thoughts and you had a little more encounters with Darth Maul. Episode I has never been my favorite out of all of the series but the fact that the book was written well I gave it five stars. I originally was going to read all seven books but since book was basically the same thing as the movie I might not except for episode 3. Overall it was good but if you've ...more
Maria Ines
Jul 14, 2016 Maria Ines rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Que bom! Adoro esta história! É tão triste mas ao mesmo tempo tão linda. Ver Anakin tão novo, ver como ele se sentia na altura, como era bondoso dói ainda mais do que a ver a saga. As premonições que o Yoda tem sobre o futuro negro de Anikin, a sua relação inicial com Padmé é linda visto que ele é tão novinho. Quero mesmo mesmo continuar o resto da saga! Adoro ler e ler os livros dos teus filmes preferidos é espetacular.
Greg Smith
Sep 06, 2011 Greg Smith rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2011
While I understand this was made from the screenplay, I would still have liked to have seen this made into the movie instead of what was. It's more or less the same as the movie was, just without all the things that made it into a kids movie. It also contained a lot of additional content and character back-story that just doesn't play out well with movies. For instance, you really get to understand what Obi-wan is thinking as you get to get more in-depth with his character.
Jordan Hofer
May 13, 2010 Jordan Hofer rated it really liked it
If you ask my opinion on any/most star wars' book/s there are several moral massages that one will commonly recall.
-MEAN PEOPLE SUCK
-IT'S GOOD TO BE BRAVE
-MEAN PEOPLE GET UGLY
-DEFEND YOUR FRIENDS
-WATCH OUT FOR MEAN PEOPLE PLAYING TRICKS AND TELLING LIES
-DONT'T LET NASTY OLD MEAN GUYS GOAD YOU INTO LOSING YOUR TEMPER
This book is not one of the best books in the star wars saga, but it's necessary to read it because it is the 1st episode.
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Terry Brooks was born in Illinois in 1944, where he spent a great deal of his childhood and early adulthood dreaming up stories in and around Sinnissippi Park, the very same park that would eventually become the setting for his bestselling Word & Void trilogy. He went to college and received his undergraduate degree from Hamilton College, where he majored in English Literature, and he received ...more
More about Terry Brooks...

Other Books in the Series

Star Wars: Novelizations (8 books)
  • Star Wars - Episode II: Attack of the Clones
  • The Clone Wars (Star Wars: The Clone Wars, #1)
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“Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.” 373 likes
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