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There’s a Third Thrawn Book Coming and Naturally I Have a Lot of Feelings

But also where's my Rae Sloane book?

The cover art for Thrawn: Treason by Timothy Zahn, from Del Rey and Lucasfilm

Happy holidays to my Thrawn stanning friends, Timothy Zahn is back with another book centered on everyone’s favorite Chiss Grand Admiral. Thrawn: Treason will follow Thrawn during the fourth season of Star Wars Rebels as he returns to Coruscant, runs into the delightfully despicable Orson Krennic, and has his loyalty called into question by Emperor Palpatine himself.

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More importantly, Thrawn’s boyfriend … sorry, aide Eli Vanto has returned from Thrawn’s homeworld in the Unknown Regions bearing a dire warning. Count me the hell in already.

While Thrawn: Alliances has been a bit of a struggle to get through for me, the inclusion of Eli is already making me excited. I adored Eli Vanto in the first Thrawn novel; his status as an outsider in the Empire paired well with Thrawn’s equally unsure status and they made a killer duo. But more importantly, I care about the Unknown Regions and what lurks out there.

I vaguely was aware of the concept of the Unknown Regions when I first got into Star Wars literature, but it was Chuck Wendig’s Aftermath series that got me hooked on it as a concept for future Star Wars materials. For those not in the know, the Unknown Regions are a spooky place unmapped by the galaxy. The Last Jedi’s Ahch-To might be a planet found there; other things out there include asteroids and possible space beings. I assume that’s where Snoke also comes from.

More importantly, the Empire was tracking a threat out there before it fell. The First Order regrouped in the Unknown Regions to build their strength, but I doubt they were the threat the Empire warned of. No, my friends, I firmly have a theory that something else is lurking out there, and this Thrawn book might be our best glimpse at looking at it. Whatever it is could fuel a new trilogy, or a show, or more delightful books.

(Spoilers for Star Wars Rebels to follow)

Another reason I’m hyped about this book? We’re one step closer to finding out what happened to Thrawn after the end of Star Wars Rebels. We last saw the Grand Admiral trapped by purgill (space whales) on the bridge of his Star Destroyer. He, along with intrepid Jedi Ezra Bridger, were then hyper-spaced off with the whales to who knows where. The show ends with Ezra’s adopted sister Sabine heading off to find him with fan-favorite Ahsoka. While I doubt we’ll find out exactly what happened to Thrawn and Ezra in this book, we could get a tease as to where they’re headed, or even an epilogue that sets up future adventures.

That would fit with a long-deleted tweet about how we weren’t going to find out about any post-Rebels adventures until Celebration 2019, which is before this book is released. If this kickstarts my Rebels follow-up books or show, I’ll send Del Rey Publishing my firstborn.

However, I will take a step back to say that while Thrawn is great, it would be nice to get a different Imperial perspective than him every so often. Rae Sloane is there. She’s a Grand Admiral, and bisexual, and a Black woman. Having her step up to lead a novel, or putting her in a live-action project, would be a great step forward in terms of representation. I just really love Sloane, everyone. Let her take the spotlight.

In short, I’m pretty damn excited for this Thrawn book, even more so than I was for the sequel. Hopefully, this will expand on certain topics I’ve long been interested in; even if it does not, I’m excited for more Eli and Krennic content. Long live Star Wars publishing!

(via Twitter, image: Del Rey)

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Kate Gardner
Kate (they/them) says sorry a lot for someone who is not sorry about the amount of strongly held opinions they have. Raised on a steady diet of The West Wing and classic film, they are now a cosplayer who will fight you over issues of inclusion in media while also writing coffee shop AU fanfic for their favorite rare pairs.

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