Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Planet of Twilight

  I wish I could come up with a good way to describe what I like about Barbara Hambly’s writing. This sadly is the last full Star Wars novel she wrote. There is something very smooth in the way she incorporates emotional wants and needs and motivations of the characters within the story. Planet of Twilight is the unofficial last book to the unofficial “Callista trilogy”. Basically Luke’s longest lasting love interest thus far. Though at least half of the story is around Leia and her dealings with the Planet of Twilight, and then some about 3PO and R2D2’s own little adventure which of course in the end as all stories do, the heroes cross paths to save the day. Han was in there but he didn’t play a huge role. I really was confused on what part he did play in the story, I got a little lost on that one... My biggest and about my only complaint would be about Luke’s love interest. I feel some of the things he does is a little out of character for him as I felt the same with Darksaber, but hey, I guess you could say love makes you do funny things right? ;-)  But I’ll get more into this in the spoiler section of this review (for those who have already read it and don’t mind hearing how it ends, I’ll tell you before you get to that)...
Large bolder split in two showing the crystals it contains

I read part of this book while camping in the mountains of NJ. You don’t get quite the experience reading this any other way! I don’t know what the author was basing her planet on but I felt a little like I was on the Planet of Twilight! I stayed at several parks but two practically seemed to fit the description. One was unbelievably beautiful walking along the gravel covered paths as the ground glittered with pure white crystals! Another I actually found gemstones laying around and clear crystals imbedded in the large rocks! I was unaware that there is a mountain area in NY/NJ called the Crystalline Appalachian Mountains! But I quickly noticed the similarities of things I was reading in the book with what was outside, or sometimes found inside my tent! I even looked the author up after realizing this on Wikipedia to see where she lived which ended up to be in CA but her parents were from PA so I guess there is a tiny possibility she could have been here and some of it is based on this area or it could just be a coincidence... but I must say it added to reading it!

 As for the story it’s self, it was well paced for the most part, partially in the middle. There were parallels with well known folklore but in my opinion done very well.

Leia Organa Solo fighting Beldorion
Another note is; I’m always glad when focus is put on Leia’s struggle to except who her father was. It is over looked in some books. All in all it was a fun read! A little creepy at times but good! The cover art is very beautiful as well and the book is bound in orange. Not that it matters really what color the book is bound in but something I would like to comment on cause I thought it was artful and nice to look at and a nice change from the blander dark colors.

Now. If you have not read it yet and think you might eventually, stop here and come back when your done! :-)
Quarts Crystal and Amityst

I want to go into more depth here cause part of the reason this book really got me was because of the Planet of Twilight it’s self Nam Chorios! Just think how beautiful a world would be covered in crystals! Well, I don’t know how many places in the world there are like that but in NJ/NY areas there are what are called the Crystalline Appalachian Mountains.

 I don’t recall ever hearing of them but I discovered pretty fast something was odd about the campground I was staying in. There were crystals all over the ground! I even found a few pieces of Amethyst but most were Quarts Crystal or rocks of Mica. Mica is a very sparkly metallic crystal that will basically cover the ground like glitter. The more I looked around the more crystals I found around me! One large boulder had split in two and inside were formations of crystals! It was then I started to research were I was and was quite surprised to find there is a mountain range that goes through New York, New Jersey, and Penn that contain so many crystals it’s named for them! A girl who loves glitter’s DREAM!!!

Tick at Sparta Lake
But then as with the Planet of Twilight’s down fall are the Drochs! But in the real world I would like to call them ticks! And there were more around then I was confortable with!
The blood sucking vampire bugs that freaks you out at the thought of finding one attached to you! I am happy to say one never did but I found one or two crawling on me, yicks! My dad would quite often say they looked like crabs which I found strange since the large Droch was described as looking like a crab as well! Ticks can also carry a number of diseases. It was a creepy thing to read at night knowing there were bugs around me somewhat like the droches! Ah!

But it couldn’t have been a better place to read it and the camping was a lot of fun... or should I say still is as I am still camping writing this. I have learned a great deal more then I did about rocks and the like! I am originally from Alabama and you just don’t see many interesting rocks there. I collected rocks when I was younger but there wasn’t much of interest around me. I have been sparked back into my interest in rocks! I have even come across a fossil or two during this trip!

 But enough about my camping and back to what bugged me about the book. That would be how it ended... So lets start really from the beginning... Luke falls in love with Callista in Children of the Jedi (which is one of my favorite). She is part of the ship and in the end becomes human again but loses her Jedi ability. Thought it was strange how he feel in love with her only knowing her through the force but it also made since as well. He became very close to her in a very short time and she him. Then we hit Darksaber... that’s when things go awry... He takes off and leaves everything for this girl... this shy awkward farm boy has fallen in love with this go get ‘em loner Jedi (who doesn’t even seem to be his type... though I’m not sure what would be his type but she doesn’t) now in the body of someone else... now that goes beyond awkward but Luke didn’t seem to mind... I just shook my head and went with it, though it didn’t seem quite right, but I must note that was not written by Barbara Hambly. Now comes book three and back to Barbara Hambly! In all I really think she has a great talent in writing but I don’t understand what she was doing between Luke and Callista here. He sets off to a dangerous planet to find her that she has sent a massage saying don’t come to... but Luke HAS to find her so he ignores it and goes anyway. She by this time has decides Luke must NOT find her... But at the end Luke spots her at a distance... he could quite easily approach her, now think about it, this is someone madly in love, has put his life in danger to find her, thinks he can’t live with out her... and then sees her! Out of no where his mind suddenly changes and he does nothing... Now if your came all that way, almost dyeing on the way. I think he would have least have gone to her and said something to her even if he was ok in letting her go... OK, I get it he loves her and loves her enough to let her do what is best for her but after all that he doesn’t even go to say farewell? No! He just looks at her and sends her a message (through the force? If so, how? She’s yet to regain her powers at this point.) that he understood which brings you to the next puzzle cause no where is there much to change his mind to make him understand... what happened?! Leia talked with her about it but not with Luke so... just that little chat with Liegeus did it? I found this to be plain weird and a very abrupt end to their romance... maybe the author was rushed in writing an ending, idk, but... something just didn’t quite make since. I loved how Daala’s love story picked up though! Nice touch!

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