September 22, 2023
Here's a Must-Read Book Before 'The Rise of Skywalker' | 'Before the Awakening'

Ahead of the release of The Rise of Skywalker, Annlyel explores Star Wars: Before the Awakening

We have a little over four months left until The Rise of Skywalker hits theaters. Then we will finally witness the “ending” to the Skywalker saga. In preparation for The Rise of Skywalker, Lucasfilm is releasing a swath of comic books and novels to get one pumped for the Star Wars finale but there’s one novel whose importance has only grown because of The Rise of Skywalker. And that novel is of course Star Wars: Before the Awakening.

This book came out in accordance with The Force Awakens but it took me four years to finally read it. When I did I realized that it may have been perfect timing on my part.

Here's a Must-Read Book Before 'The Rise of Skywalker' | 'Before the Awakening'

Before the Awakening tells a single individual story for the sequel trilogy’s three predominant heroes; Finn, Rey, and Poe Dameron. Each of these stories is set before the events of The Force Awakens, giving us a different perspective on the heroes’ leadup to The Force Awakens.

Finn is one of the best stormtrooper trainees in the First Order, always coming in the top 1% of his tests and simulated battle routines. He’s looked on as a shining example of what the First Order is trying to achieve and we see a side to Finn that hasn’t really been visible in the Sequel Trilogy; the side of him that conveys his immense leadership. It isn’t until toward the end of The Last Jedi that we finally get to see that hardened side of Finn that is so apparent in this story. It’s a great precursor of what to expect in The Rise of Skywalker now that his fear and lack of confidence in himself has been washed away.

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Rey‘s story in the book once again reiterates the resiliency of her character and how much her parents, who have been an empty void in her life, mean to her. If the identity of her parents is officially revealed in The Rise of Skywalker then it’s important to get an idea of how much that will impact her through Before the Awakening.

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And Poe is 100% a hero. His story focuses on the burgeoning presence of the First Order and his determination to stop their rise to prominence, no matter how dangerous that can be. Poe’s parents had to fight through the war against the Empire. Now he has to fight to save the galaxy from the First Order. Following in his parents’ footsteps, he is contributing to protecting innocents from the tyrannical regime…or die trying.

Here's a Must-Read Book Before 'The Rise of Skywalker' | 'Before the Awakening'

Like I said before, The Rise of Skywalker will be here before we know it and since this book will only add an extra element in our understanding of these characters it’s a definite must-read for Star Wars fans.

Who knows. You may even discover some hidden clues for The Rise of Skywalker sprinkled throughout the book. I know I think I did. 😉


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Annlyel James is a prolific Staff Writer for Future of the Force. She is passionate about Star Wars and Marvel but loves a wide variety of movie genres. Follow her on Twitter @annlyeljames where she channels the Force frequently!


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