Old Friends: Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, Leia Organa Solo, C3P0, R2D2, Lando Calrissian, Wedge Antilles, Mon Mothma, Admiral Ackbar, Chewbacca, Garm Bel Iblis, Mara Jade, Winter, General Jan Dadonna, General Crix Madine, Ambassador Furgan, Gantoris, Kyp Durron, Jacen Solo, Jaina Solo, Admiral Daala, Qwi Xux, Cmdr. Karatas, Streen, Anakin Solo, Momaw Nadon
Synopsis: Second book of the Jedi Academy series, the title suggests that we are once again dabbling in the Dark Side of the Force. There are still a lot of lighter moments to keep the reader amused and interested.
Review: With Admiral Daala literally on the warpath and out to destroy them, the New Republic has a lot to deal with! The likelyhood of loosing Mon Mothma to a mysterious wasting disease, and the departure of Admiral Ackbar in the aftermath of a disasterous trip to Vortex with Minister Leia Organa Solo leaves the leadership of the New Republic in disarray. Leia is overwhelmed trying to keep everything together.
Meanwhile, on Yavin 4, Luke Skywalker has his new apprentices to train and comes to realize the heavy burden that falls on him as he tries to protect them from the Dark Side. Even with all his precautions, he is not prepared for the battle with Exar Kun, a dead Sith Lord who reaches out from the past to threaten everything Luke is trying to do. His star pupil, Kyp Durron, is imaptient with Luke's teaching and goes off on his own down the dangerous path to the Dark Side.
On a lighter note, we enjoy the friendly rivalry between Han and Lando, and you will find yourself smiling at Lando's attempts to woo Mara Jade. A small side plot finds the Solo twins, Jacen and Jaina, having a little adventure of their own in the underground of Coruscant, much to the dismay of C3P0 and Chewbacca.
This story has shades of "The Empire Strikes Back" in that it deals with the Jedi struggling to come to terms with the power and knowledge of the Dark Side. The ending finds Luke Skywalker in a death-like coma, leaving the reader looking forward to what happens next in the final volume of the trilogy.
Title: Dark Apprentice