I realized I had not yet posted my reactions to Thrawn Alliances. Overall, I enjoyed the book, but I preferred the first Thrawn book. The middle part was a bit slow, especially the mine plotline. Of course I will also keep in mind that this was a Vader and Thrawn book, and I have always just been pretty lukewarm about Vader. I was disappointed that there was no Eli Vanto in this book, but I have hopes for future books where we see what Eli is up to in Chiss space (the story I care about more than what is going on in the Empire to be honest and the story I really want to read about but the mainstream fans probably aren’t as interested in.)
Things I loved:
- The brief mention of the conflict between the Chiss Aristocra. That one sentence will feed me for months.
- Thrawn’s sad look when talking about the force sensitive Chiss girls. Bring on the fanfics.
- Ar’alani’s ship! Ar’alani taking the girls back! Was Eli on that ship omg?
- The interactions between Padme and LebJau and his crew were fun. I felt really bad for LebJau in the end.
- Younger Thrawn’s Chiss Defense Fleet uniform. Would Eli wear the same type or have they changed uniforms in the meantime?
- I liked seeing Padme, and I think there should have been more parts with her.
- Padme, R2 , and Thrawn working together
- Thrawn giving Anakin/Vader snark
Things I didn’t like that much:
- I wasn’t really that interested in Batuu, but I am usually more interested in the characters/ plot line of stories rather than the settings, unless the settings are very compelling (Coruscant is a notable exception for me)
- This is entirely my fault, so it’s not really a criticism. But I had worked up in my head the possibility of more Chiss characters and more Eli Vanto in the months between when this book was announced and its release. I am still holding out hope that I will eventually get that book. And maybe we will see Thrass back in new canon. But in hindsight I feel dumb, because it was obviously a Thrawn and Vader book and I went in hoping for tons of Chiss stuff. I feel pretty stupid about that now lol …
I also liked that we got confirmation that Thrawn is in the empire to possibly get some backup for what the Chiss are dealing with, or at the very least just to scout for them. This confirms my headcanon for new canon Thrawn. I’ve seen some hot takes on this site framing that as a bad thing. But Thrawn’s own people being his priority makes perfect sense and is always how I read his character even in Legends. Who was actually expecting Thrawn to side with the Empire over the Chiss? Especially siding with double-crossing old Palpatine who views non-humans as garbage?
But was I one?