Omen is the second book of the Star Wars: Fate of the Jedi series. Omen is Christie Golden’s first book in the Star Wars universe and in my opinion she represents it admirably. A major part of this novel is introducing a heretofore unknown civilization of Sith on the forgotten jungle world of Kesh. Golden introduces a new antagonist and slowly reveals how this stranded society is able to take the stars and foreshadows the conflict that is sure to come later in the series.
The conflict continued apace back on Coruscant as more Jedi Knights mysteriously become ill and the conflict between the government and the Jedi Order escalates. The tension lagged somewhat in these sections, the political conflict didn’t really keep me intrigued and I always bogged down in these sections. However, one aspect of the Coruscant story I really enjoyed was the introduction of Javis Tyyr, a nosy journalist who likes to stir the plot and keep both sides off balance.
My favorite viewpoints were those of Luke and Ben Skywalker as they travel and learn from the Aing-Tii force users. The prose felt very natural and the story was interesting as they continue to investigate Jacen Solo’s five year force study sabbatical.
Once again I felt like the scenes with Han and Leia were very underwhelming. I felt like their viewpoints were largely a reminder that “Hey, we still live in this Galaxy, we are around!” They go on an excursion with their granddaughter to an animal exhibition which at LEAST turns into an interesting setting for a brief fight scene, but it still felt boring to me.
The series is taking its time to get off the ground, every plot line but Luke’s still feels like its setting up before anything really cool can happen. I found the Vestara viewpoints very interesting (even though they were very much setting up for future books) and it was cool to view how a pseudo-religious cult like the Sith would grow and adapt into a hierarchical civilization when abandoned on a jungle planet and left to its own devices for 5,000 years.
Omen was overall a good book, Christie Golden did a good job, but I am anxious to see where the future books in the series will take the various threads of conflict. The conflict is far more subtle than Legacy of the Force in that as a reader I really don’t have any idea where all of this is going. It makes things more mysterious at the opportunity cost of tension in these early books of the series.