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The Courtship of Princess Leia
by Dave Wolverton
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I have heard a lot of mixed reviews on this book. A few different bloggers I follow loved it! Jackie B @ Death by Tsundoku said:
I love The Courtship of Princess Leia. It’s one of my favorite Star Wars (now SW Legends) novels. I love how Han has to come to terms with his emotional connection in an adult way.
But some random people I follow on Reddit didn’t like it quite so much:
That whole book was a dumpster fire that I immensely regret having read.
While these are two opposite sides of the spectrum, I definitely fall closer to Jackie’s opinion. There were a couple issues I had, but overall I really enjoyed The Courtship of Princess Leia! Also GoodReads leans toward the light side; It has 13,029 ratings averaging 3.6 stars which is pretty good!
The best part of the book is that its a Han Solo story. I LOVE Han Solo. He is hands down my favorite Star Wars character. I have only read a handful of Star Wars books but they all follow the famous scoundrel.
Weirdly I really enjoyed the main storyline even though it bordered on a love triangle. (And I usually HATE love triangles) But I guess I didn’t mind seeing Solo have to work for Leia’s love. Like Jackie said it was pretty cool to see him come to terms with his emotional side. He may pretend to be tough and aloof but he is really a big softie.
Along with our regular characters we got to meet some new faces too. I really liked Isolder and Teneniel, though their endings seemed a bit out of the blue and I’m not sure they made sense, but I don’t hate where each of their perspective paths lie.
Overall I thought the book had a good mix of action and adventure. Too much adventure can get boring and too much action can get tedious. I felt the force was balanced. We also didn’t have too many space battles, which was nice. Don’t get me wrong, I love the space aspect of Star Wars, but I can’t read tons of space battles without losing my mind.
The parts of the book that I had issues with were the different societies. In this book there were really three different “nations” that we met. I say “Nations” because I don’t really know what to call them, but they are different planet systems and different governing bodies. The first is the Alliance, which is what Han and Leia are part of. The second, is The Hapes Consortium, which is a grouping of 63 planets all governed by Woman. The last is a group of Force-Witches and I can’t remember the name of their planet. The Force-Witches are also all female and live in a society governed by Woman.
Having two female-ran societies sounds great! It sounds like it would be a feminist utopia, but both societies were kind of terrible. The Hapes Consortium was lead by a group of TERRIBLE woman who were manipulative and cruel. The Force-witches were better people, but they kept men as slaves and their whole society revolved around stealing other witches men and “marrying” them. I mean they treated their men decently, but they were still slaves. I am a feminist but I don’t believe men need to be enslaved to have equality! So neither society sat quite right with me. I felt like the author was trying to manipulate us into thinking he is a feminist when really he thinks women would be terrible rulers. It was kind of brutal.
But despite all that I really did like the book! And I have already ordered more Star Wars books to read! And I am super excited!!!
Also on a completely random note. Both Han and Isolder seemed to have allergies while on the witch planet. Was there a point to that? Or did we ever find out what it was? Or was the author saying they were having emotions but were pretending they weren’t? That part just confused me and I want to know what it was haha.