August 14, 2022
Star Wars The High Republic Trail Of Shadows

Join Jedi Knight Emerick Caphtor and Private Investigator Sian Holt as they try to find out what the mysterious artifact that killed Loden Greatsorm is in Star Wars: The High Republic – Trail Of Shadows

It’s time to return to the era of The High Republic in Marvel’s Trail Of Shadows.

In this volume, Emerick is tasked by Stellan into looking into just how Loden Greatstrom died. Skeptical over the events, he agrees. At the same time, PI Sian Holt discovers her partner is in deep with his investigation into a black market deal with a Nihil selling a mysterious weapon. They reluctantly join forces at the request of the Chancellor when it becomes clear the two cases are related.

Their case takes them across the galaxy and eventually to the Nihil Doctor Uttersond who means to sell one of the “weapons” to make a profit.  But they are too late to save the Jedi on Starlight Beacon, arriving back with their prisoner to find the station burning. Determined to save lives, they two storm the station and fight one of the monsters together finally getting the evidence they need.

The High Republic

THE RISING STORM

The comic takes place over a series of months. Starting at the end of The Rising Storm and continuing until the destruction of Starlight Beacon. This is a mystery short story in the Star Wars universe. It’s got its false leads and dead ends, and it’s an unlikely duo. The two realize someone in the Republic must be feeding the Nihil information, and even establish their own informant. While not essential to the overall High Republic plot, we learn here what the Leveller is and some of its history from Uttersond.

We also learn there’s an old nursery rhyme about it that a Dalnan nursemaid used to sing to Jedi younglings. Both Stellan and Emerick begin to remember it and sing it during the story. Emerick makes a note to look into Dalnan history to learn more about it. But doesn’t get a chance before the end of the comic.

Star Wars The Republic - Stellan Gios

CHARACTERS

Emerick is Black and around the same age as Stellan, although the gray hair made me think he was older. Sian is Asian and about the same age or younger. At first, they don’t get along. But as the investigation drags on, they become close friends. Sian grows to care for Emerick and grows concerned for him when he is affected by the Leveller. It is their friendship that grounds Emerick during the fight as he trusts her to be his eyes and ears. I assumed they would go the romantic route with these two. But I was pleasantly surprised that they chose to show a platonic friendship instead. We don’t see those enough in fiction.

The comic also gives a backstory to Uttersond, as we see he has a family and only took the job with the Nihil for the money. He has a wife and gaggle of Fanlings (younglings) and is in debt due to medical school. He hopes that if he sells the “weapon” on the black market he can make enough to pay off those debts; leave the Nihil, and set his family up. He’s also tired of being ordered around and called rodent by the Nihil soldiers. Of course, his morals are still not what they should be for a doctor since he doesn’t care what death and destruction it will bring. It doesn’t make him sympathetic per se but does give motivation to his actions and choices throughout the overall story.

Star Wars The High Republic Trail Of Shadows

VERDICT

I read this in an hour or so one evening after work. It’s a quick and fast-paced read that fits nicely between books. If you like mysteries and short stories, then this one is for you. Otherwise, you could probably skip it and still understand the events of Phase 1 of The High Republic. Three and a half Lightsabers.

Star Wars: The High Republic – Trail Of Shadows is published by Marvel Comics and is available to buy now.

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