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Splinter of the Mind's Eye (Star Wars)
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Splinter of the Mind's Eye (Star Wars Universe)

3.21 of 5 stars 3.21  ·  rating details  ·  6,522 ratings  ·  295 reviews
Luke Skywalker expected trouble when he volunteered to follow Princess Leia on her mission to the planet Circarpous. But he discovered that hidden on the planet was the Kaiburr crystal, a mysterious gem that would give the one who possessed it such powers over the Force that he would be all but invincible. In the wrong hands, the crystal could be deadly. So Luke had to fin ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 297 pages
Published May 1994 by Ballantine Books (first published January 1st 1978)
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Community Reviews

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This book is very basic, by-the-numbers sf--but with the added thrill of being written right after A New Hope came out. Thus, the entire story is about Luke and Leia's sexual tension. Sure you always intended them to be siblings, Lucas. Sure.
I don't know what the story is behind this book. I read it well before the second Star Wars movie was released, thinking it would be it. But it wasn't. In fact, it's not part of the Star Wars story that I know of. That alone makes it kind of interesting.

Foster had to write this book as part of his contract for the novelization of Star Wars. Originally, this was supposed to be the basis for a low budget sequel, but then Star Wars hit it big & it was decided there would be a big budget sequel
Travis McClain
In 1976, a little paperback book called Star Wars: From the Adventures of Luke Skywalker appeared on the mass market. A little blurb notified the readers that it was soon to be a motion picture from its author, George Lucas. You probably know the cinematic story from there, but the literary world of Star Wars is often overlooked. To begin, Lucas did not pen that first novel; it was ghostwritten by noted science-fiction author Alan Dean Foster. No one knew whether the film would make any money, b ...more
Gary Foss
OK, I admit it: I read this.

I was young and foolish and more than a little drunk on blue milk and whatever that squeaky little guy ordered in the cantina. Plus, I had a lightsaber (a white plastic tube from a golf bag that I MacGyver'd into an ersatz Star Wars toy) and not enough plot to fill out my own pubescent Expanded Universe, so I was a-Jonesin' for plot hooks and adventure ideas. Episode V was years away! YEARS, people! Heck, in my house, we were so desperate for more Star Wars we had...
In some ways I feel a little bit like poor Alan Dean Foster got shafted here. The idea behind this book was to write a sequel to Star Wars that could be turned into a movie on a low budget and presuming that Harrison Ford wouldn't return as Han Solo. When in hindsight we look at how the Star Wars saga turned out, with Empire Strikes Back being not just the high point of the series, but of sci-fi/fantasy movies in general, this "what-if" looks tragically unambitious and rather stupid. It's clear ...more
I wonder why i didn't read this as a kid? I remember seeing this and the Han Solo books, but didn't read them.

The data above says this was published in 1986, but the copy i have says "copyright 1978 by The Star Wars Corporation." That puts it right after "Star Wars".

Luke is a lot smarter here than he is in the movies. At times i wondered if this story wasn't intended for Han Solo at some point in its development. He not only seems more streetwise than his character on screen, but more than any
Scott Rhee
Years ago, I read this novel, "Splinter of the Mind's Eye" (the title alone is pretty kick-ass) by Alan Dean Foster, which I think was one of the first Star Wars novels published that wasn't a novelization of one of the Lucas films. I recall very little of the plot, but I remember enjoying it. I'm pretty sure, though, that Foster's novel doesn't quite follow the continuity of the other Expanded Universe novels, which is why it kind of exists in a literary limbo of "alternate universe "Star Wars" ...more
Splinter of the Mind's Eye was the first ever Star Wars Expanded Universe novel, published the year after the blockbuster release of Star Wars (A New Hope) in 1978. It follows the story of the marooned Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia on an alien world as they become ensnared in the search for a priceless artifact that resonates with the power of the Force.

All in all, the novel is horrible. Stilted dialogue, improbable action and plot points, not to mention several literal rabbit trails and unne
The Book Slayer
I don't know whether it's truth or fiction that this book was going to be the basis for 'The Empire Strikes Back' once upon a time. But that notion made it enticing to delve into the book, to see what could've been. What I found is everything about this book is lacklustre. Pretty quickly it became apparent that this wouldn't be a very exciting or compelling story. By page 50, nothing had really happened, nothing interesting had been described, but I continued on, only to get more and more disapp ...more
In it's day, this book would have gotten a higher rating from me--I was a big Alan Dean Foster fan. However, since it was published prior to the release of The Empire Strikes Back, it does suffer plot- and characer-wise now. But if you're a fan, it's worth a read for old time's sake.

Although I must say that even back then, it made NO sense that Luke (from a desert planet) would know how to swim while Leia would not. That still baffles me.
As the first book written about the Star Wars universe, this is the "what might have been" follow up to Star Wars (A New Hope). The story about how this could have been the sequel as opposed to Empire Strikes Back is out there and easy to find so I won't go through that. Consequently, you have to read this story knowing two things, one, Foster was basing his characterizations on just one movie, and two, he didn't know which direction Lucas would take the story and the relationships of the charac ...more
I remember reading this book back in my youth. It was a time where there was only one Star Wars movie and we were all hankering for a little more Star Wars in our diet. Back then, I thought the book was okay, but a little weird.

Now, I think the book is sort of okay and a lot of weird.

I enjoy most of Alan Dean Foster’s work, but this book does make me ponder why I like his work. The plot is simple: Luke and Leia crash on an Imperial occupied planet, get caught, escape, find the McGuffin and beat
Mark Musante
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
There are a couple reasons to read SOTME and there are a couple reason not to. If you're into Star Wars (and I don't refer here to anything that developed after the theatrical release of Jedi except, perhaps, the Zahn trilogy or Dark Empire), you will probably find interest and entertainment in it. Don't expect anything similar to those stories, however. This is no tale of the wars among the stars. The details here are mainly concerned with the landscapes of an alien world and its main protagoni ...more
Grahm Eberhardt
Ah, the legendary Star Wars sequel that coulda been. The story was basic pulp; the characters were wildly different from their silver screen counterparts; the MacGuffin was an entirely transparent deus ex machina that makes no attempt to be interesting; and, of course, the various revelations about Luke's family hadn't been revealed yet so the buckets of sexual tension between Luke & Leia is hilariously gross.
Of course, when this book was written Star Wars wasn't a thing yet. It was a weird
B.  Keith Barron
This book is the reason I tend to avoid books by Mr. Foster, and I know it’s a bit unfair. I read this book not long after watching Star Wars and I was excited. Here was a book, a continuation of the story. I was enthralled; ecstatic… and then I actually read it.
It’s not really Mr. Fosters fault, it was an authorized Star Wars Story, and subsequent movies have rendered it irrelevant (stuff in the book turned out to be wrong according to the next movies). But this book is the r
Mike (the Paladin)
I read this when it came out. it was riding the "wave" of the early Star wars mania. I remember it being a mildly interesting science fantasy read. the funny part is that for me the memory that stands out is a scene in the book where Luke is fighting and throwing things around with the force...which it was established later would put him firmly on the dark side of "THE FORCE". Got to be careful when you write those early novels. It was like a James Blish Star trek novel written back in the early ...more
Wow, I had totally forgotten this one until I saw it mentioned in the recent reviews. It came out before "The Empire Strikes Back" movie. Naturally Luke and Leia would be the star-crossed lovers(no pun intended, of course). I remember the bit about the lake as being really creepy. The old lady (can't remember her name) and the fuzzy things . . .Yuzzums or something? At the time it seemed like it would be the plot of the next movie. Guess we guessed wrong on that one!
Very exciting when I was a ki
Vincent Stoessel
Hard to rate this fairly after reading it so long ago. This was written by Foster years before Empire was released, so he only had the first movie's (New Hope) story to work from. The tale itself wasn't epic but it did fill the painful gap between New Hope and Empire Strikes Back for those that were around to see the originals in theaters. It was during that time that I read it. Read this as "Alternative History" version of the Star Wars mythos.
Side note: I have never read an Alan Dean Foster b
Kate Percival
When Luke Skywalker was asked to go with Princess Leia to Circarpous, he wasn't expecting to get stranded on the planet Mimban. The Splinter of the Minds Eye, written by Allen Dean Foster, is a Science-Fiction Nerd Book. Is there such a word? It was an OK book. Not the greatest one I have read. This was a very boring read. There was some action, but it was all just very slow moving. Not very fun! But, I'll give you the summary of it anyway.
So, as I said, Luke volunteered to go with Leia on a mi
Dan Gorman
As preparation for The Force Awakens, I decided to read a few selections of Star Wars fiction from the old and new canons. Splinter of the Mind's Eye, set shortly after Star Wars: A New Hope, was the first SW Expanded Universe novel and was published in 1978. Because Disney is expanding the SW franchise, Disney's creative team has declared all the old SW novels "legends," and the team is writing new stories that sit before, during, and after the classic movies. So Splinter of the Mind's Eye is a ...more
Overall, a good novel with good writing.
The basic plot is that Luke and Leia crash-land on a jungle planet, Mimban, where offworlder settlement is limited to five Imperial mining towns. As they try to figure out how to get off-world without getting caught by the Empire, they meet an old, mildly Force-sensitive woman named Halla, who makes a deal with them: she'll help them leave the planet if they help her get her hands on the Kaiburr crystal, a semi-legendary gem said to boost one's connection
Briane Pagel
I finished Splinter In The Mind's Eye the other day. It took longer than I'd thought it would because I'm reading several books at once these days. I didn't do that for a long time. For most of the past few years I had a few rules about reading, like I would only read one book at a time, and I wouldn't re-read old books, but I've slowly abandoned those and now I just read whatever I want. So for the past few weeks I have been reading Splinter In The Mind's Eye, and also Faithful Place by Tana Fr ...more
Splinter of the Mind's Eye is the first "Legends" Star Wars novel I have read since the creation of the "Legends" books. Alan Dean Foster did a great job with the material with which he had to work. I enjoyed the story and surprised myself by reading the whole thing in two days. It was really an easy read and, although I was a bit surprised to find that Han Solo doesn't star in the book, I was intrigued by the whole idea of the Kaiburr Crystal. Having read newer material from the expanded univer ...more
Noel Thingvall
Pros: Halla, Hin, and Kee are fun characters. Some exciting setpieces, good stretches of prose. Grammel is a great villain when we first meet him. Final duel is sharply done. Having read through the early drafts of the first film, was neat to see discarded elements recycled here (beyond the crystal, you have the crash on the swamp planet and much of the third act), as well as a few more nods to Kurosawa's Hidden Fortress.

Cons: The tone is way off, dark and dour, grim and gross, complete with bru
I know a lot of people don't like th EU, but I'm a big fan and think that most of it is pretty good.

This is one of the few EU books that I consider to be a stain on the amazingness of STAR WARS. At first I really wanted to read it, because I knew that there would be a Vadar/ Leia duel at one point, and I was excited about that. That was the main thing that kept me going. The big problem was the characters. Leia got hit the hardest, everything I love about her is completely gone. At one point she
Heidi Ward
Wow! I remember reading this one in about 6th or 7th grade. Loved it at the time, but I devoured anything to do with Star Wars. As I recall, it was a swashbuckling adventure with a lot of swampy goo and Luke/Leia UST. One reviewer below noted that maybe this should have been a Han Solo story (rather than Luke), and in hindsight, too true. But as a relic of the time when the Star Wars universe was still an open, undetermined world it's pretty cool to have a one-off "what if" like SotME.
This is one of the worst Star Wars books I've read. Sure, it was written right after the original film came out, so you have to read the book with that in mind, but it's not just the inconsistencies with the rest of the series that make this book a trudge to get through. In fact, those didn't bother me at all because I knew when the book was written. No, my issues were few but big. For one, Luke and Leia do not act or talk themselves. I kept thinking the whole time I was reading the book that n ...more
I had never read any of the "Star Wars" fiction before, and with good reason.

I was in a nostalgic mood when I picked this up at the library. What makes this book most interesting is that it was released not long after the first (or the fourth, depending on how technical you want to get) "Star Wars" movie was released. The plot is predictable, the writing is almost laughable, and Darth Vader doesn't appear until the last 20 pages.

Read it only if you need a good laugh.
Read years ago. Disappointed. Because of this work, I did not read any more Star Wars spin-off books until 2008.

2009: Tried to read it again. Got only to page 34. If this book started the Star Wars "expanded universe", it's wonder it didn't implode. Pretty standard space opera stuff, but if--and it's the big "if" of the series--if we didn't already care about Luke, Leia, et al., there's nothing in this story which would compel your attention. Bland.
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Bestselling science fiction writer Alan Dean Foster was born in New York City in 1946, but raised mainly in California. He received a B.A. in Political Science from UCLA in 1968, and a M.F.A. in 1969. Foster lives in Arizona with his wife, but he enjoys traveling because it gives him opportunities to meet new people and explore new places and cultures. This interest is carried over to his writing, ...more
More about Alan Dean Foster...

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“The universe is full of dead people who lived by assumption.” 21 likes
“Awkwardly pressed up against him, the Princess seemed to take no notice of their proximity. In the dampness, though, her body heat was near palpable to Luke and he had to force himself to keep his attention on what he was doing.” 0 likes
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