As combat escalates across the galaxy, the stage is set for an explosive endgame: Obi-Wan undertakes a perilous mission to destroy the dreaded Separatist military leader, General Grievous. Supreme Chancellor Palpatine continues to strip away constitutional liberties in the name of security while influencing public opinion to turn against the Jedi. And a conflicted Anakin fears that his secret love, Senator Padmé Amidala, will die. Tormented by unspeakable visions, Anakin edges closer to the brink of a galaxy-shaping decision.
Author: Matthew Stover
ISBN: 0-345-42884-6 (Del Rey)
Finished: 2 August 2007
When: 19 years before the Battle of Yavin
Like its predecessors, Sith is more novel than novelization, as if the book was written as part of the Expanded Universe and not an adaptation of a screenplay. Compare Revenge of the Sith and Return of the Jedi novels: Sith is just over 450 pages; Jedi is 181 pages. There is more detail and Stover delves into the thoughts and feelings of the characters, things that don’t always translate on to the big screen. We see what motivates them and get a better understanding of them. This is why I like the prequel movie novels more than the movies themselves.
One of Stover’s touches is his choice of Point of View character, especially if Anakin is present. Anakin isn’t always his first choice. For instances, in the battle between Anakin and Dooku, the fight is seen from Dooku’s point of view: Dooku, arrogant snob, treats the whole thing as a farce — until he realizes that Sidious always intended for Anakin to kill him. The fight between Mace and Sidious, it is Mace’s thoughts and perceptions that we see. And it the climatic battle between Anakin and Obi-Wan, it’s Obi-Wan’s view we’re privy to.
Again, like its predecessors, there are parts that never made it into the movie: we see more of Padmé’s involvement with here fellow senators; Yoda’s arrival on Dagobah. An interesting book omission: the battle on Kashyyyk. Yes, Yoda goes to Kashyyyk, but the battle is never depicted and we never see Chewbacca.
“Are. . . all your rescues so. . . entertaining?”
“Actually, now that you mention it, yes.”
— Palpatine, Obi-Wan Kenobi
The dark is generous, and it is patient, and it always wins — but in the heart of its strength lies weakness: one lone candle is enough to hold it back.
Love is more than a candle.
Love can ignite the stars.
— coda at the end of the book