In a somewhat ironic twist, I’m not going to be going over my personal highlights as far as the story goes, rather the actual highlights I made on certain passages and what takeaways I get from them now. I figure, since I took my sweet time getting through Bloodline (not because it was bad, mind you, I enjoyed it immensely, I’m just a slow reader, so if I don’t really buckle down it’s a long process), there are roughly 1.5 billion reviews on the plot and so forth already available, so why not do something else…makes sense, right? Right, okay, so, think of this as a Bloodline review from a different point of view, and, as we Star Wars faithful know, certain points of view can allow you to see things in ways you may never have otherwise…oh, and if you haven’t already finished Bloodline (you should be embarrassed because I beat you…only kidding), caution, spoilers ahead…
“that was how a child thought of war: as a great adventure where the good always won and evil died without shedding real blood”
This basically summarizes G.I. Joe, except without the dying bit: the Joes always won, Cobra was always defeated, but there were never any casualties or even injuries that I remember (and, I mean, if they didn’t leave any impression, then they may as well not have happened). It’s a simple statement, but rings very, very true. Growing up, I thought going to war meant getting jacked and being a hero while hanging out with all your friends and shooting guns at the evils of the world (mostly Nazis and the Russians when I was kid), but then in high school I learned about Vietnam and saw Apocalypse Now & Full Metal Jacket and suddenly war didn’t seem so fun anymore…unfortunately for some people, though, reality doesn’t set in until they live it personally, or see someone they know come home missing more than just a limb, struggling to adapt to a “normal” life…as William Tecumseh Sherman said, “war is hell.”
“Someday was the sun disappearing behind a cloud, a morning lost to darkness long before night should have come.”
This line is poetry. Honestly, watch:
Someday was the sun
behind a cloud,
a morning lost
long before night
should have come.
Boom. All you plagiarizers out there, Claudia Gray wrote your English poetry assignment for you, and if you don’t get an A, I’d complain.
“History had become legend, but some of the legends were still told.”
I mean, c’mon…how perfect is this? You can’t tell me she didn’t throw the Legends-hungry crowd a bone here on purpose; that sentence is too thoughtful to be a coincidence. That said, though, I don’t think it really applies to anything in Bloodline. Now, granted, I’ve probably only read what amounts to approximately 30% of the old Legends material, but I don’t recall anything that I can link to Bloodline. I think, for the most part, the legends that will be retold as canon will come from the time before The Force Awakens. I think they used bleach when they wiped the slate clean after Return of the Jedi, but merely dusted the rest off, if you catch my drift.
“They hadn’t even told Ben yet.”
This one line looms largest out of the entire book for me. I had been contemplating theories and what not about Ben’s fall under the assumption that he knew of his bloodline (see what I did there?) from the first moments he started his training…but since he didn’t, when he finds out he may feel a sense of betrayal: betrayed by his parents because they didn’t think he was strong enough to handle the truth, and betrayed by his Master, his uncle (does he even know Luke’s his uncle?) by not letting him know the true power that could be inside him…I’m so curious to find out how the darkness consumed him, how Snoke managed to manipulate him, if that is indeed what happened, as Leia says…I’d love to read a book or comic explaining it in detail, but I have a feeling that probably won’t happen, and, if it does, it won’t be until after Episode IX. So, the game of “wait and see” (and speculate) continues…
“So, a man named Anakin Skywalker had become a Jedi Knight, fought courageously in the Clone Wars, and won the love of a senator-queen…and had still chosen to become a monster.”
This is a pretty succinct explanation that doesn’t give the pain of both real and potential loss that Anakin felt justice, but, all the same, it’s true, all of it…he had been one of, if not the best Jedi General in the Clone Wars. He was as powerful with the Force as just about anyone, and would surely someday have been the most powerful Jedi to ever don the robes. But there was always evil inside him: hate, anger, jealousy, contempt, impatience, greed…he was a recipe for disaster stew for which Palpatine so expertly fueled the fire and stirred the pot.
“they shared the same eyes.”
Where have we heard this before…hmm…hey Maz, can you help me think, oh, hey, wait, it was you! Okay, that was dumb, but I’m keeping it…anyway, I took this as a nice little pseudo tie-in to The Force Awakens, and as a way of showing how things come around again. In a sense, that’s what this book was about, the turning of the tide, like the peace of the Republic decayed from the inside to give rise to the Empire, so to is the New Republic beginning its slow descent toward chaos and ultimate destruction by the First Order from those within the Senate itself. And, as Leia fought the Empire as a member of the Rebellion, she will again take up arms against oppression by creating the Resistance to attempt to fend off the First Order. All things are cyclical. Some have complained that the story in The Force Awakens was just a rehashing of what happens in A New Hope, and, to a certain extent, they’re right, but is that not what happens in reality? “Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.” I know, I know, people want their escapes from reality to not necessarily mirror the reality they’re trying to escape, but c’mon, that’s life, whether it be here or in a galaxy far, far away…
So that’s the way the news goes! (I know, I used that one already, but I don’t care, Rick & Morty is awesome). Anyway, yeah, I don’t highlight a whole lot when I read; something has to really grab me to make me want to interrupt my flow and take note of it, but I think I hit on some pretty interesting points. As for a quick and dirty review of the book: I’m both fascinated and perplexed about how the government of the New Republic works. We know they have a chancellor, but I don’t recall one being mentioned at all, and especially not when the whole “First Senator” idea was pitched, which you think would be a point of contention since “First Senator” seems to be just another name for “Chancellor.” Maybe I missed something, though. I tried to ask for a crash course on Twitter, but got no takers…I’m kind of bad at social media though, so…anyway, it was good to see Leia getting her hands dirty, and interesting to find out that Han was basically gone all the time. I wonder if he was gone while Ben was still around…that could be why Kylo seems to think Rey wouldn’t appreciate Han as a father figure. Also, I read all of Rinnrivin Di’s lines as if he were Hondo (which is probably racist?). Lastly, I’m really curious to see what becomes of Ransolm Casterfo and Carise Sindian. Sure, it was implied that Casterfo was to be executed on his home planet, but we all know that if you don’t actually see a character die it’s foolish to assume their demise; and if I were a betting man (which I’m not, really, but for the sake of this statement let’s say that I am), I’d say Carise was safely with the First Order when Hosnian Prime got the Alderaan treatment. Will we see either of them again, or were they merely plot movers for this novel, that’s the real question…so, there’s my two cents, which is really more like a dime, so you guys made out like bandits…or something…anyway, let me know what lines you highlighted that I missed, or chime in with your thoughts about what jumped out to me, and, as always, may the Force be with you…