Star Wars: Death Troopers
When the imperial prison barge Purge—temporarily housing five hundred of the galaxy’s most ruthless killers, rebels, villains, and thieves—breaks down in a remote, uninhabited part of space, its only hope seems to lie in a Star Destroyer found adrift, abandoned, and apparently derelict. But when a boarding party is sent to collect parts, only half of them return – bringing with them a horrific disease so deadly that within hours nearly everyone aboard the Purge will die in some way. too hideous to imagine.
And death is just the beginning.
The half-dozen survivors of the Purge – two teenage brothers, a sadistic captain of the guards, a couple of rogue smugglers, and the chief medical officer, the lone woman on board – will do whatever it takes to stay alive. But nothing can prepare them for what awaits them aboard the Star Destroyer amid its vast, creaking void that isn’t really empty at all. For the dead rise, soulless, unstoppable and indescribably hungry.
Author: Joe Schreiber
Cover artist: Toula Lotay
Editor: Del Rey
Release date: August 2, 2022
What is it about ?
The younger brothers, Trig and Kale Longo, are being held aboard the houseboat The Purge. Zahara Cody is the prison doctor, both despised and coveted. Captain Sartoris is the head of the prison guards and has more than one skeleton in his closet.
Should I read this book?
If you are a horror fan, star wars and thrill rides, then you should definitely read this book. Make no mistake; it’s a zombie story. It’s full of the familiar tropes and touchstones of the subgenre and its star wars the setting doesn’t dilute the dread, gore, and tension you’d expect.
I’m a big fan of authors taking influence from different genres within a shared universe, and this is a far more successful example of star wars horror than anything that preceded or followed it.
If you can’t stop reading star wars but you want a break from the more traditional tales of Jedi and villains, then this might just be the palate cleanser you’ve been looking for. It is also the perfect star wars book to read before Halloween.
What did you like?
Once the story started, I had a hard time letting go. It’s a boundless firecracker of a book that will stick with you long after you finish it. The characters were well made and easy to connect, urging you to survive them and dread their demise. It’s a small thing but it’s huge for star wars readers. We rarely follow characters whose destiny we do not know before entering them. There are real stakes here and I found myself hesitantly turning each page, one eye closed, afraid to reveal the end of one of my protagonists.
I also liked the idea of a star wars story set in a prison. There are a lot of interesting stories that could be told in this setting and it amazes me that we haven’t had much more than a few comic arcs and this one book. I would take a whole series set on a prison barge with or without the zombies. The book sets up its own mysteries and drama even before the virus is discovered and they are largely crushed when the real “meat” of the story kicks in. You’d think that would be a negative, but it doesn’t. recalled the intentional error found in From Dusk ‘Til Dawn and it only adds potency to the chaos and violence when the story really kicks off.
What didn’t you like?
It would be irresponsible of me not to issue some sort of warning. There are scenes in this book that are really hard to take. They’re typical of the zombie genre but it’s incredibly disarming to encounter moments like these in a star wars book. There’s one particular scene about a third into the book that made me put the book down and pull myself together before continuing my dark journey. It’s by no means negative, but I’ve spoken to a few people who found they couldn’t continue reading when they reached those chapters. So take that as a warning to bring your big boy/girl pants when reading this book.
There is a prequel to this book which is set during the Old Republic and is called red harvest. I haven’t read it yet, but I heard it’s better to read after soldiers of death. As star wars fans, we’re more than used to experiencing prequels after the original material, so I can’t wait to read this one.
Also in canon is George Mann’s collection of horror-inspired short stories, Dark Legends, which would make sense to pick up if you’re feeling that darker side of the galaxy far and wide.
Anything else to add?
There are a few cameos in this book that some might say are unnecessary and I can see why, especially since there’s no way this character will be the same after the events of soldiers of death and we have already encountered them after these events in the Legends timeline. I will say though that the characterization was spot on so that didn’t bother me too much.
Death Troopers: Star Wars Legends
- Schreiber, Joe (Author)
- English (language of publication)
- 288 Pages – 02/08/2022 (Publish date) – Random House Worlds (Publisher)