With the release of The Last Jedi, I wanted to have more context in my upcoming viewing. The Last Jedi quickly became one of my top 3 favorite Star Wars movies and one of my favorite movies of all time. As my interest on Star Wars grew, I decided to take a leap into more canon stories, like the ‘Star Wars Rebels’ series and some books. I started reading Canto Bight and could take it off my hands until the very last page.
Some reviewers criticized this book by not giving good stories, but I couldn’t find a flaw in them. The first story maybe draw me less interested due to a different pacing, but the next three were such a joy I couldn’t stop reading. I don’t think this book is necessary to understand more of Canto Bight, but it does give context into how this city works and in this way understanding the economy of the war between the Resistance and the First Order. If you like mystery stories in a ‘film noir’ setting, then Canto Bight is your book.
The first story relates an attempt to kill somebody, taking you to different places. The second story involves the negotiation of an exquisite wine, and many things happen in between. In our third story, there’s an involvement with fathiers, the cute horses Finn and Rose ride on, as somebody is kidnapped. The last story involves the brothers Dodi, Thodi, and Wodi, clearly recognizable from the opening shot of Canto Bight, and their work in the casino. As you can see, they all have a criminal, Bond-like theme I thoroughly enjoyed.
One of the things I enjoyed the most of these stories is that they are only focused on Canto Bight, an unknown place since The Last Jedi. This makes the authors be in a free space to create, still conscious of the Star Wars universe but without the unnecessary mentions of other characters. You will see characters from other stories of the books mentioned in some parts, but it makes sense as they are all part of the same place. Besides that, there is no mention of other known characters of species.
Maybe the plots shown here could be odd to some fans that criticized the Canto Bight scene for being too earthy, similar to Las Vegas and the mafia, but I believe this book reflects how much it can be achieved when you give a whole new playground for authors and the Lucasfilm Storygroup to develop.
This book is recommended if you want to get into some Star Wars books without any knowledge of the rest of canon stories. I find this book to be a good starting point to see if you might like more Star Wars fiction in your life. In my case, I just want to get deeper and deeper into this universe. It could be hard to separate The Last Jedi from the stories in this book, but the more you read Canto Bight without thinking about your opinion on The Last Jedi, the better you’ll enjoy the stories as a whole.