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501st (Star Wars: Republic Commando, #5)
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501st (Star Wars: Republic Commando #5)

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4.18 of 5 stars 4.18  ·  rating details  ·  2,267 ratings  ·  88 reviews
The Clone Wars are over, but for those with reason to run from the new galactic Empire, the battle to survive has only just begun. . . .

The Jedi have been decimated in the Great Purge, and the Republic has fallen. Now the former Republic Commandos–the galaxy’s finest special forces troops, cloned from Jango Fett–find themselves on opposing sides and in very different armor
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Paperback, 434 pages
Published October 27th 2009 by LucasBooks (first published October 1st 2009)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Chad Bearden
Karen Traviss continues to be one of the best things about the Star Wars EU with this, the fourth volume in what is essentially the Clan Skirata series. As the beginning of what is basically a new, second, story arc, it lacks the emotional whallop of "Order 66", but in addition to laying the groundwork for the next series of conflicts and adventures, it also further defines the personalities of the various clones, begins to explore the myriad of relationships among the hodge-podge cast that inha ...more
Crystal Starr Light
"That's how tyranny succeeds. When folks think it won't affect them. Until it eventually does."
This book was selected in my Star Wars book of the month club! Plus, a good friend of mine gave me the book, which meant I absolutely had to read it!
The Clone Wars has ended, and the Republic is now the Empire. Darman and Niner are stuck in Vader's 501st, Vader's Fist. Darman struggles with the events of the last book, and both long to be home on Kyrimorout with Kal Skirata, Atin, Fi, and the other r
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DC
I love Traviss's characters, but this Commando installment is probably the weakest example of her prose. Lots of repetition. Repeating things about what Clones are like. Especially if you've read other books in this series. Stuff gets repeated. Within a few paragraphs. There's often repetition.

But the characters are great. This book is also more character driven (as opposed to action driven) than her other Commando books.

I'm changing my review to 2 stars instead of 3. Because the more I think ab
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Erik Hansen
This was not as strong as the previous Commando books, and the series is starting to read like a Mandalorian ethnography. Lighter on action and intrigue, Karen Traviss has shifted the focus to personal drama and family dynamic. To be honest it's starting to feel like a soap opera, As Mandalore Turns or The Cloned and the Restless if you will.

While this book was a little slower than its bretheren, I am looking forward to the next book and seeing how Darman pulls off his daring escape. Hopefully t
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Dale
Of course I only find out after reading this that there's not going to be a conclusion to this series. That's seriously unsatisfying. This novel essentially cliff-hangs. Don't bother reading it - stop with Order 66.
Susan
I normally hate reviewing books. I don't enjoy getting into the technical aspects of a story, because as I read it, thats not what I think about. I read to enjoy, not to critique.
On that note, I will say that the Commando series is one that completely grabbed me by the neck and didn't let go. I felt that Traviss did an exemplary job at developing her characters, and establishing a connection with the reader. I don't think that there were any parts in the Commando series, or this continuation o
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Espresso
This is the second disappointment of the series.
In Order 66 Etain died stupidly. After proving herself intelligent and noble, she practically commits suicide. I have no problem with a character dying if it is "in character", but it was not.

In this book the main problem is Darman. One must understand he has no basis for dealing with the loss of Etain, but even so he is extremely volatile and irrational, which is not at all like Darman. He decides not to desert because he thinks he can do more g
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Tina
Apparently I read this book instead of Order 66, thinking it was Order 66, because I'm an idiot and didn't stop to look at the cover. I guess I don't give Traviss merit as an author since I just assumed she'd just skipped over all the action that apparently occurred in the book I was supposed to read; I didn't stop to think that maybe, GASP, I was wrong. Anyway, my review of this book is likely still valid, but there is the potential that the things I nit-picked about in my original review might ...more
Anthony
Why do I keep coming back to this franchise? Maybe its because I'm a bit of a masochist who likes being hit over the head with a 2x4 of morality and ethics, or maybe it's because I want to bleed my savings account a bit more.

No. The real reason is that I'm going out on limb, hoping, praying for some action sequences, moral ambiguity, and the struggle against the Empire like this novel would imply, alas I am wrong. So very, very wrong.

Once more, we are given another dose of why Yoda's Jedi Order
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Shawn
The book Imperial Commando: 501st by Karen Traviss. The novel follows the lives of Darman Skirata a clone commando who is now tasked with hunting down an killing Jedi. Through the honest naivety of those who were getting the lives they didn’t think the would get you connect with all of the characters large and small. As the fifth and final volume of the Republic Commando series to fully understand the book you need to have read the previous books or browsed their Wikipedia articles. The book is ...more
Jim C
A novel set in the universe that we all know and love. This book is not considered canon. It is the continuation of the Republic Commando series but it is known as the Imperial Commando novel since the galaxy is now ruled by the Empire. I strongly recommend reading the previous books before this one. In this book we learn how recent events are affecting everyone and how they are adjusting to their new lives. The old adage "out of the frying pan into the fire" describes this book.

This series is n
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Sarah Matts
I love the original Star Wars Trilogy of films, but had never read any of the extended universe stuff.
I thought I'd try out this book since if it was bad at least it wouldn't ruin the original films for me (because let's face it, nothing could ruin the prequals more than they ruined themselves.)
Well, this is the first and last time I'll be reading one!

The actual text is fine - the author can write and the characters are well enough written.
The story apparently started before this book, although
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Benji
Karen Traviss did something amazing with her series of books on the clone commandos. They were complex; they had depth and excitement, adventure and suspense, emotion and heart. As a whole, they took the creation of a clone army - which is treated in a cold and a matter-of-fact way in the movies - and sculpted this rich idea of a group of clones who begin to want more. Who see themselves for what they are - living, breathing beings robbed of the freedom they deserved.
That's one thing I love abo
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Benji Brandt
I felt that Imperial Commando was a fitting pseudo end to Traviss' Republic Commando series, making sure to keep the series' trend of focusing on new, thought-provoking topics that Star Wars has rarely delved into. It's really a repeat of the last couple of books, with the characters moving closer to their goals - and some doing frustrating things, much as real people do. It was enjoyable to read it, and Traviss managed to make the book very entertaining, even though the plot had hit a slow poin ...more
Alberto Gutiérrez
This is Traviss at her finest. Love how she creates and gives life to all this characters and their relationships with themselves. If you have followed the series to this pint no doubt you are a Traviss fan now, and I suggest you to look for her work on the Gears of War Universe, she's awesome telling squad based stories. And if you want to know what happened to everyone on the now cancelled sequel to this book, head to Traviss webpage and on the FAQs you'll find everything you need to know. Dam ...more
Rob Gould
I thought this book was 434 pages of dr. phil, married with children, and jerry springer all rolled up under the title of Star Wars. This had nothing to do with the other books in the series except for the characters. As a book on the Republic Commando, and the last book in the series, you would have figured this novel would be chalked up with suspense and intrigue as the commandos were on the run. But no, it was a story filled with loathing and scorn for what one of the main characters had done ...more
Nat Nat P
In a long line of stories about Kaminoan clones and Palpatine's newborn Empire, Karen Traviss' last novel in the unique Commando series sets itself apart, in the best way possible. It is truly exceptionally written and more immersive the more you read it, with a colourful cast of characters, compelling conflicts of all kinds and the right dose of emotion for this time period. 501st , the name of the best known legion among Star Wars fans, deals with the aftermath of Order 66 for grieving Mandal ...more
Tania
Kal Skirata and most of his band of outcasts are safely holed up on Mandalore, his adopted planet. When Order 66 was given, Jedi across the planets were slaughtered and Palpatine took command. Darth Vader is his right hand man. The Siths are in control, but the general public does not realize that they are as much force-users controlling their planets as the Jedi they attempted to eliminate.

The battle rages on - the new Empire wants Jedi exterminated. Clones are their slave soldiers sent to do j
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William
I am glad this series is over, but the ending of this book certainly indicated that Traviss had more to say about her Mando-inspired clones who fled from the ranks of the burgeoning Empire under Palpatine. It is too bad she had so little to say throughout the novel to begin with. There were just so many issues with this book, I don't know where to start:
1) too many characters. Every chapter seemed to introduce someone new to the plot if not the series in general. Sure, everyone likes it when an
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Michael R.
The first thing I realized was that, there are an awful lot of Star Wars books already out there! Some starting before Episode I, and some continuing after Episode VI, and many, many more in between. This one is interesting because it takes place right after movie III, where Anakin has just assumed power as Darth Vader, and evil Palpitine has taken over leadership of the Empire.

The story has two main plots. One, some of the rebels escaping to planet Maladore (really boring). Second, the more int
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J.
This book can be viewed from a few different standpoints, most notably as the fifth part of an ongoing story or the first part of a new series that never went any further. Either way you look at it you can't help but come away feeling a little disappointed at all the loose ends left when you reach the final page. There is so much setup here that gets no payoff because the rest of the series was scrapped, which is a shame because a lot of effort has gone into the crafting of the books from the st ...more
Mike Smith
This book is the 4th Star Wars book by Karen Traviss in the Republic/Imperial Commando series, featuring a small group of clones and their trainers. The first three books dealt with the commandos and a few Jedi officers during the Clone Wars. This book takes place shortly after the events of the Revenge of the Sith movie, when the clonetroopers have become stormtroopers and the Jedi are now the enemy. Many of the commandos we've come to know in the first three books are now deserters, more inter ...more
Adelaide Metzger
UGH! YEAH! That's what I'm talking about!! Karen Traviss will always NAIL it where it matters! I hadn't read a Republic Commando book since Order 66 came out, so I flipped through the first four for review the night before I started this one. MAN! These are the most emotional Star Wars books I have ever read! There was even an incident in the middle of the book that I HIGHLY, emotionally disagreed with. God, I was so mad! Let's just me and the book weren't on speaking terms for 3 days.
But the
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Michael
Having read nearly all the Star Wars novels, I have to say that this is series is the best. First came the three books of the "Republic Commando" series ("Hard Contact," "Triple Zero," and "True Colors." They were followed by "Order 66" and now "501st." The books revolve around Kal Skirata, one of the Mandolorians hired by Jango Fett (in league at the time with Palpatine and Count Dooku) to train the clone soldiers being grown on Kamino. Skirata stepped in and saved the lives of some of the firs ...more
Chad
Traviss wisely let a number of her former main characters take a back seat this time, getting her cast back to a (mostly) manageable level. Still, the book would have benefited from a 'who's who' type page, as my brain has let slip exactly who some of the secondary characters are.

It's interesting to see the series transfer from the Republic to Empire eras. My main enjoyment of the Republic/Imperial Commando series comes from the fact that it offers a different perspective. These people don't see
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Patrick
Pretty fun. The series (Counting 4 Republic Commando books and this Book 1 of Imperial Commando series as one series) has weakened and this and the last book are much weaker than the first three, but I still wanted to read them and largely enjoyed them.

I really love this series of books and characters. Real world questions are addressed powerfully through fiction: What would be the moral and legal status of human clones if they were successfully created? What of their children? How would they se
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Lindsey
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Micah
Much like Episode II & V were transitional episodes for the movies, Imperial Commando provides the same action, suspense and drama that we have come to expect from the Star Wars Universe in that same transitional package. Order 66 (Book #4 Clone Commando) closed the chapter on the Clone Wars but served as a beginning to life in the Galactic Empire. Skirata & his band of clones, Jedi & others are attempting to settle in when their lives are constantly disrupted. An old "friend" return ...more
Prashanth
Well, what happens when a science fiction book gets wholly concerned about the human part and not really anything else? This book more or less answers this question. This is my first star wars book, and I really doubt whether I will pick up another star wars book by the same author.

There is no beginning, no stuff to think about the way story progresses and, certainly, there is no end - one boring journey to nowhere.

To summarise:
> Kal Skirata is filthy rich, he wants to protect clones
> Clo
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Jacey
Star Wars? Yes but without the usual suspects and more like the 'Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead' version as the story of a few individuals amongst the thousands who wear the Empire's anonymous white armour unfolds between the momentous events as shown in the Star Wars movies, starting with the Battle of Geonosis. As usual Traviss gets right under the skin of the uncommon soldier. She's worked as a war correspondent, been a member of the TA, actively supports campaigns to improve the lot o ...more
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#1 New York Times best-selling novelist, scriptwriter and comics author Karen Traviss has received critical acclaim for her award-nominated Wess'har series, and her work on Halo, Gears of War, Batman, G.I. Joe, and other major franchises has earned her a broad range of fans. She's best known for military science fiction, but GOING GREY, the first of her new techno-thriller series, is set in the re ...more
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Other Books in the Series

Star Wars: Republic Commando (5 books)
  • Hard Contact (Star Wars: Republic Commando, #1)
  • Triple Zero  (Star Wars: Republic Commando, #2)
  • True Colors (Star Wars: Republic Commando, #3)
  • Order 66: (Star Wars: Republic Commando, #4)
Sacrifice (Star Wars: Legacy of the Force, #5) Bloodlines (Star Wars: Legacy of the Force, #2) Hard Contact (Star Wars: Republic Commando, #1) Revelation (Star Wars: Legacy of the Force, #8) Triple Zero  (Star Wars: Republic Commando, #2)

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“That's how tyranny succeeds. When folks think it won't affect them until eventually it does.” 4 likes
“Life was a trade-off between loneliness and inevitable peaks of joy or agony.” 0 likes
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