The most recommended Star Wars books

Who picked these books? Meet our 14 experts.

14 authors created a book list connected to Star Wars, and here are their favorite Star Wars books.
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Book cover of Traitor

Nathan Elberg Author Of Quantum Cannibals

From my list on speculative fiction to explain the meaning of life.

Who am I?

I grew up believing that all men are brothers and that in our hearts we all hold the same values. It’s not true. It presumes that western cultural values are the best mankind can aspire to. In fact, it’s an act of aggression to project my values onto others. I love to explore other cultures by living amongst them or reading a good book about them. As a religious, trained anthropologist, I try to discern their big questions about life, the universe, and everything. Do they have any bearing on my questions?  After all, the quest is for better questions, rather than comfortable answers (like ‘42’ - see Hitchhiker’s Guide…).

Nathan's book list on speculative fiction to explain the meaning of life

Nathan Elberg Why did Nathan love this book?

The Star Wars universe started as one movie, then three, then six. It then experienced its own “big bang,” exploding with books, movies, television shows…  My favorite is one small part of that universe, which hardly anyone pays attention to. Traitor is Book 13 of the New Jedi Order series. I expected normal good guy/bad guy, dark side/light side dichotomies, but my expectations were overturned. Jacen, previously a good guy Jedi, comes under the tutelage of Vergere, a mysterious creature of indeterminate allegiance. I couldn’t tell whether she was Jacen’s teacher, protector, torturer, or captor. I was fascinated that all these concepts were meaningless here. There are many great stories in Star Wars and the New Jedi Order. This one outshines them all in what it teaches me about good and evil.

By Matthew Stover,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Traitor as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From the depths of catastrophe, a glimmer of hope.

After the capture of Coruscant, the mighty heart of the New Republic, a stunned galaxy fears that nothing can stop the Yuuzhan Vong. Still, that crushing defeat produces one small miracle: Jacen Solo is alive. Yet he can scarcely imagine himself in stranger circumstances.

The young Jedi Knight is in the care of Vergere, a fascinating creature of mystery and power, her intentions hard to fathom, her cruelties rarely concealed. But this master of inscrutable arts has much to teach the young Jedi...for she holds the key to a new way…


Book cover of Star Wars The High Republic: Into The Dark

Ben Green Author Of Forged in the Fallout

From my list on YA with boys who defy stereotypes.

Who am I?

I’m a grown man who reads and writes young adult fantasy books. I believe YA stories are perfect for nearly every audience. Let me tell you why. Our teenage years are filled with growth. As we mature, we forget what such rapid change feels like. We become less empathetic toward youth. And yet, many of our characteristics—positive and negative—develop during these years. I read YA to understand myself. It also helps me be a more understanding father and teacher. That said, I'm very picky. I despise teenage stereotypes. For young men, it is particularly hard to find books that depict empathetic male characters. Here’s a list of books where young men feel genuine.

Ben's book list on YA with boys who defy stereotypes

Ben Green Why did Ben love this book?

Reath Silas is a very relatable Jedi, though perhaps not the most heroic at first.

He deeply doesn’t want to leave the comfort of his home on Coruscant, especially for his first assignment in the outer rim. He would rather explore the Jedi archives and attend historiography. Maybe, like Anakin Skywalker, he too dislikes sand. But reluctantly he faces the challenge.

When his group’s ship is pulled out of hyperspace, they take refuge in an abandoned space station. Reath is thrust into a world of pirate looters, shady guild members, and a dark-side mystery concerning the station itself.

What lessons will this young padawan learn?

By Claudia Gray, Giorgio Baroni (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Star Wars The High Republic as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 12, 13, 14, and 15.

What is this book about?

Long before the Clone Wars, the Empire, or the First Order, the Jedi lit the way for the galaxy in a golden age known as the High Republic!

Padawan Reath Silas is being sent from the cosmopolitan galactic capital of Coruscant to the undeveloped frontier-and he couldn't be less happy about it. He'd rather stay at the Jedi Temple, studying the archives. But when the ship he's traveling on is knocked out of hyperspace in a galactic-wide disaster, Reath finds himself at the center of the action. The Jedi and their traveling companions find refuge on what appears to be…


Book cover of Aftermath: Star Wars

Terry Bartley Author Of Tyranny of the Fey

From my list on casually queer sci-fi fantasy.

Who am I?

I’ve always been a big fan of sci-fi and fantasy, especially anything involving superheroes or D&D-style adventure. For the longest time, I had to find queer representation through subtle glances and creative readings of characters. I loved these stories for the sci-fi and fantasy elements, but it was frustrating that every love story that came up was straight. It didn’t feel possible for queer love to be a part of a plot, and even when there was a queer character it had a “very special episode” vibe to it. Finally, queer characters are becoming part of the story, and it doesn’t have to be a “big deal.”

Terry's book list on casually queer sci-fi fantasy

Terry Bartley Why did Terry love this book?

As a queer fantasy/sci-fi fan, I’ve always been a little jealous of the fact that there are so many straight stories that love doesn’t especially factor into.

The story is about the adventure. That is what I love about Aftermath: Star Wars. Sinjir Rath Velus is a former Imperial officer who also happens to be gay. He is allowed to be a flawed hero. That is so cool to see in a queer character!

By Chuck Wendig,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Aftermath as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens

The second Death Star has been destroyed, the Emperor killed, and Darth Vader struck down. Devastating blows against the Empire, and major victories for the Rebel Alliance. But the battle for freedom is far from over.

As the Empire reels from its critical defeats at the Battle of Endor, the Rebel Alliance-now a fledgling New Republic-presses its advantage by hunting down the enemy's scattered forces before they can regroup and retaliate. But above the remote planet Akiva, an ominous show of the enemy's strength is unfolding. Out on a lone reconnaissance mission, pilot…


Book cover of Rogue Squadron

Aer-ki Jyr Author Of Star Force: Origin Series (1-4)

From my list on that defined great storytelling for me as a kid.

Who am I?

My name is Aer-ki Jyr and I’m the creator of the Star Force Universe. I started writing because most of the new books coming out just plain sucked, so I figured if I could do better, then I should…and I did. What people only partially realize is that Star Force is filled with references and homages to the past great works. There’s far more in there than they realize, but those who have also read them will know when they see them. This list gives you the biggest influences that shaped my childhood mind, and why there are literally statues in the Star Force Universe to a lot of this stuff. 

Aer-ki's book list on that defined great storytelling for me as a kid

Aer-ki Jyr Why did Aer-ki love this book?

Just as the Jade Phoenix Trilogy introduced me to mechs, Rogue Squadron is the book to explain starfighter combat. It’s the first of a long series that literally writes the book on the subject, and the tactics used actually make sense as opposed to books where they just fly around and shoot stuff. 

But more than that, it’s about a squadron, a team that works inside the cockpit and outside to have an impact on a galactic war. They don’t win it themselves, but you can see the impact of a few people at the right time and with the right motivation and gear can do a lot of good. They also show how Jedi do not just come from a Temple as kids. Sometimes adults, who had no idea of their potential, rise to great things. 

Potential isn’t just for kids, after all.

By Michael A. Stackpole,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Rogue Squadron as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In this essential Star Wars Legends novel, discover the legacy of Rogue Squadron and its fabled pilots, who became a symbol of hope throughout the galaxy.

They are sleek, swift, and deadly. They are the X-wing fighters. And as the struggle rages across the vastness of space, the fearless men and women who pilot them risk both their lives and their machines. Their mission: to defend the Rebel Alliance against a still-powerful and battle-hardened Imperial foe in a last-ditch effort to control the stars!

Its very name strikes fear into enemy hearts. So when Rebel hero Wedge Antilles rebuilds the…


Book cover of Deceived

J.W. Kiefer Author Of Death

From my list on the most unique magic systems.

Who am I?

I'm a fiction author and minister from Upstate New York. As a young boy, I had many supernatural experiences. My earliest memory is of a supernatural basis. For me, the unseen world, and those things that others either deny exist or have relegated to ancient history and myth, have always been real to me. Reading, films, video games, and all other forms of storytelling were ways for me to experience the strange and the mysterious. What I found as I walked through such places as Middle Earth, Narnia, and Ice Wind Dale, was that the stories of these characters that overcame adversity, failures, and weaknesses to become heroes inspired me as well.

J.W.'s book list on the most unique magic systems

J.W. Kiefer Why did J.W. love this book?

Okay, if you try to tell me that Star Wars doesn’t have a magic system, then I will fight you right here and now. I mean it, I will actually fight you. In all honesty, Star Wars is sci-fantasy, not really sci-fi. I think every kid and even adult from my generation can remember trying to move something using the force. In fact, I still wave my hand in front of electric doors and pretend I am a Jedi. Oh, don’t judge me, you know you do it too. Jedi and Sith are, after all, simply space wizards. They even dress the part. Well, maybe more like space clerics, but you get the point. Why I chose this book is because I feel that it gets into a lot of discussion on how each side views the force and its applications. I am particularly fascinated by Malgus and his ideology…

By Paul S. Kemp,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Deceived as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The second novel set in the Old Republic era and based on the massively multiplayer online game Star Wars®: The Old Republic™ ramps up the action and brings readers face-to-face for the first time with a Sith warrior to rival the most sinister of the Order’s Dark Lords—Darth Malgus, the mysterious, masked Sith of the wildly popular “Deceived” and “Hope” game trailers.

Malgus brought down the Jedi Temple on Coruscant in a brutal assault that shocked the galaxy. But if war crowned him the darkest of Sith heroes, peace would transform him into something far more heinous—something Malgus would never…


Book cover of Hard Contact

Carl Michaelsen Author Of The Last of a Dying Breed

From my list on to bring on an airplane/vacation.

Who am I?

If you’re at all like me, then finding time to sit down and read a book is incredibly challenging given how busy our everyday lives are. It seems like the only time I truly can dive into a book is on vacation. And so, all of the books I recommended I have either read on vacation or on an airplane. In my opinion, a good vacation book needs to be two things. It needs to be a quick read and it needs to be impossible to put down. When I sit down to write a book, I try to keep both of these in mind!

Carl's book list on to bring on an airplane/vacation

Carl Michaelsen Why did Carl love this book?

Obviously, this book is not going to be for everyone. Some might not be able to get past the fact that it is a Star Wars book based off of a video game from 2005. But, if you can get past that, then buckle up for a gripping tale of war and brotherhood. Set in the first weeks of the Clone Wars, Hard Contact feels more like a Tom Clancy war thriller than a space opera. This entire series is gritty, grueling, gut-wrenching, and impossible to put down. 

By Karen Traviss,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Hard Contact as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

As the Clone Wars rage, victory or defeat lies in the hands of elite squads who take on the toughest assignments in the galaxy ... On a mission to sabotage a chemical weapon research facility on a Separatist-held planet, four clone troopers operate under the very noses of their enemies. The commandos are outnumbered and outgunned, deep behind enemy lines with no backup - and working with strangers instead of trusted team-mates. Matters don't improve when Darman, the squad's demolitions expert, gets separated from the others during planetfall. Even Darman's apparent good luck in meeting an inexperienced Padawan vanishes once…


Book cover of Twilight Company

Dagmar Rokita Author Of The Vanquisher of Kings I

From my list on sci-fi about war and weapons.

Who am I?

I always felt torn between the future and the past. I've been fascinated with space, aliens, and technology since I could remember. When I was too young to write, I could spend long hours drawing alien worlds, plants, and creatures. These hobbies from my childhood shaped my current passion for futuristic subjects, but the events from ancient and modern history still remain an important inspiration for my books. My country, Poland, experienced many wars, and history is a necessary subject at school. Historical books and documentaries let me discover and analyse how our society evolved and what mistakes did it make, so I can use this knowledge in my military sci-fi novels. 

Dagmar's book list on sci-fi about war and weapons

Dagmar Rokita Why did Dagmar love this book?

I always treated Star Wars as a fun series to watch. Lasers, spaceships, some cool droids, but that’s all.

I felt that some element is missing here: the “wars” in "Star Wars” were usually too clean, and the warriors were just some heroes going for some fun adventures. My view was violently changed by two things: Rogue One (movie) and Twilight Company (book). These two things presented wars from a completely different perspective.

Twilight Company tells a story of common soldiers, whose whole purpose is to die and become forgotten, while the famous heroes collect all the glory. This book shows that every epic victory has its ugly side.

By Alexander Freed,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Twilight Company as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The bravest soldiers. The toughest warriors. The ultimate survivors.

Among the stars and across the vast expanses of space, the Galactic Civil War rages. On the battlefields of multiple worlds in the Mid Rim, legions of ruthless stormtroopers-bent on crushing resistance to the Empire wherever it arises-are waging close and brutal combat against an armada of freedom fighters. In the streets and alleys of ravaged cities, the front-line forces of the Rebel Alliance are taking the fight to the enemy, pushing deeper into Imperial territory and grappling with the savage flesh-and-blood realities of war on the ground.

Leading the charge…


Book cover of The Star Wars Trilogy

Randy C. Dockens Author Of Myeem

From my list on science fiction stories of amazing worlds.

Who am I?

I’ve always been fascinated by science fiction and by Biblical Scripture. That may seem dichotomous to some, but not to me. I have a passion for science and for Scripture because both bring understanding about our world from the microcosm to the macrocosm. My writings are a mixture of science and mystery with a science fiction feel and a Christian perspective. I like stories that show how truth arises even from the dark, confusing, and ambiguity of life to help one discover something about God they may not have considered before, and at the same time enjoy a fun, fast-paced, and exciting journey as they read.

Randy's book list on science fiction stories of amazing worlds

Randy C. Dockens Why did Randy love this book?

This first came out just a few months prior to the first movie in 1977 and I still remember sitting in my dorm room reading every word with great expectation of how it would look in the coming movie. I had the same feeling reading it as I did when I first read Dune. A totally different story, but great world building.

By George Lucas, Donald Glut, James Kahn

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Star Wars Trilogy as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Luke Skywalker dreamed of adventures out among the stars and alien worlds. But when he intercepted a message from a beautiful captive princess, he got more than he had bargained for—and that was how the adventure of his life began. . . .


Book cover of Heir to the Empire

Aer-ki Jyr Author Of Star Force: Origin Series (1-4)

From my list on that defined great storytelling for me as a kid.

Who am I?

My name is Aer-ki Jyr and I’m the creator of the Star Force Universe. I started writing because most of the new books coming out just plain sucked, so I figured if I could do better, then I should…and I did. What people only partially realize is that Star Force is filled with references and homages to the past great works. There’s far more in there than they realize, but those who have also read them will know when they see them. This list gives you the biggest influences that shaped my childhood mind, and why there are literally statues in the Star Force Universe to a lot of this stuff. 

Aer-ki's book list on that defined great storytelling for me as a kid

Aer-ki Jyr Why did Aer-ki love this book?

Heir to the Empire was the foundational book in my childhood. I lived and breathed the Star Wars movies, and this book was essentially another movie continuing the story rather than some authors’ fanfic projects (too many to name). Reading about Luke, Han, and Leia doing new things was a breath of fresh air after watching the movies 50 times each, but that’s not why this book is so important. I can sum it up in one word…

Thrawn.

He is a character unlike any other I’ve ever encountered and is the benchmark for me when it comes to a mastermind. He’s evil, but not completely, and you find you almost want him to win as you read through it. Not because he’s evil, but because he’s professional, motivated, and immensely skilled…as opposed to the Rebel Alliance that can’t walk and chew gum at the same time. 

Grand Admiral Thrawn…

By Timothy Zahn,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Heir to the Empire as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • In this essential Star Wars Legends novel—the first ever to take place after the events of the original trilogy—Grand Admiral Thrawn makes his debut on the galactic stage.

Five years ago, the Rebel Alliance destroyed the Death Star, defeated Darth Vader and the Emperor, and drove the remnants of the old Imperial Starfleet to a distant corner of the galaxy. Princess Leia and Han Solo are married and expecting twins. And Luke Skywalker has become the first in a long-awaited line of Jedi Knights.

But thousands of light-years away, the last of the Emperor’s…


Book cover of Star Wars

Peter Krämer Author Of American Graffiti: George Lucas, the New Hollywood and the Baby Boom Generation

From my list on the life and films of George Lucas.

Who am I?

I have turned my childhood fascination with Hollywood into an academic career. For four decades I have explored, not least through extensive archival research, all aspects of the history of American cinema – films, filmmakers, studios, production histories, marketing campaigns, critical reception, audiences. Among other books, I have published three volumes in the British Film Institute’s Film Classics series (on Buster Keaton’s The General and Stanley Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove and 2001: A Space Odyssey). I have focused on some of the most highly acclaimed, most commercially successful, most ardently loved, and most influential movies of all time. The starting point for my work is always my passionate engagement with particular movies.

Peter's book list on the life and films of George Lucas

Peter Krämer Why did Peter love this book?

This short but very informative and stimulating book in the BFI Film Classics series was first published in 2009, with a new edition coming out in 2020.

Brilliantly illustrated with screenshots from Star Wars and some of the films George Lucas’s most famous production was influenced by, Will Brooker combines a meticulous analysis of the style, story, and themes of Star Wars with important details about the film’s production history and illuminating references to Lucas’s previous films and to the Star Wars saga as a whole.

By Will Brooker,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Star Wars as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The release of Star Wars in 1977 marked the start of what would become a colossal global franchise. Star Wars remains the second highest-grossing film in the United States, and George Lucas's six-part narrative has grown into something more: a culture that goes far beyond the films themselves, with tie-in toys, novels, comics, games and DVDs as well as an enthusiastic fan community which creates its own Star Wars fictions. Critical studies of Star Wars have treated it as a cultural phenomenon, or in terms of its special effects, fans and merchandising, or as a film that marked the end…