I picked up this book thinking it would be cute for my nephew for his birthday, and I ended up reading it myself. What can I say? I’m a Star Wars geek through and through.
Author: Jeffrey Brown
Genre: sci-fi graphic novel
Age group: middle grade
I had no idea this was the third book in the series when I first picked it up, but the book is written in such a way that it’s okay if you didn’t read the first two. This book has main character Roan in his third year of middle school. His middle school just happens to be a Jedi training academy. He’s had a history of getting into trouble (in an oops-did-I-do-that kind of way), and now someone seems intent on making middle school miserable for him.
As a middle school teacher, I enjoyed how Brown incorporated typical middle school issues into his story (first “loves,” teachers who seem difficult but really just want the best for their students, friendship issues, and bullying). As a Star Wars geek, I love how he stayed true to the Star Wars world and added in jokes that Star Wars fans will appreciate. The characters are original yet still familiar. There are droids like C-3PO and R2-D2 who acts as chaperones when Roan and his friends want to “double date.”
One happy surprise was discovering that Brown finds engaging ways to bring some positive moral messages into the story. Not only does he tackle how to handle bullies well, but he also brings up ethical issues like the “right” way to use the Jedi mind trick.
So if you have any Star Wars fans in your house, check out the Star Wars: Jedi Academy series. Very fun reading with some nice messages!