Star Wars book explains Leia's role in The Force Awakens

The Force Awakens has been out for a little while now, which means that we've all had time to sit and ponder some of the questions that the movie raised. Thankfully, we're also finally about to start getting some answers. Minor spoilers lie ahead, so if you haven't seen the movie, it's best to turn back now.

In the movie, we find out that Princess Leia isn't the senator that we knew her to be in the old EU books. Instead, we find out that she has nearly as much to fear from the senators in the New Republic as she does from the First Order.

This was almost as heartbreaking as anything else we learned about what transpired with our heroes in the time since Return of the Jedi. After all, she fought so hard, and lost so much, just to help form the New Republic. And now she's as much of an outcast as she was during the time of the Rebellion.

So how did she go from Rebel hero to outcast general? Almost no information was given to us, which left me feeling rather unattached to the New Republic as a whole. After all, if Leia was on the outs with them, how much would I want to root for them?

Well, thankfully we're going to get some information on just what happened to our favorite Princess during the time between the two movies. A new book centered around Leia's time as a senator in the New Republic will be hitting store shelves on May 3rd. You'd think they would have waited just one more day, for May the Fourth, but alas.

Bloodline follows Leia as she fights not on the battlefield, but in the senate, during a time of peace. As it turns out, both places can be dangerous, if you're a figure that's as important as Leia. The book introduces a new enemy for her, Ransolm Casterfo. Casterfo is another senator that is Leia's polar opposite on virtually every topic. He also has a strange fascination with collecting Imperial relics, such as pro-Palpatine banners, armor, and more.

The book isn't all boring talks and political voting processes, either. Even though the book doesn't come out for a while, an excerpt was given to USA Today which outlines a typical morning meeting between various dignitaries, where Leia is given an ominous warning. Here is a portion of it:

This won good-natured chuckles from the room; Varish Vicly's lavish tastes were well known, a foible she herself joked about. Today, however, she shrugged. "I didn't request this. Maybe the serving staff heard my name and assumed that meant to go all out." Varish smiled as she took her seat. "If that's my reputation... you know, I can live with it."

Leia settled into her chair, picked up her napkin — and stopped.

Something was written on the paper streamer on her plate. Actual writing. Virtually nobody wrote any longer; it had been years since Leia had seen actual words handwritten in ink on anything but historical documents.

But today, someone had left this message on her plate, only one word long:


Leia shoved her chair back, instantly leaping to her feet. "We have to get out of here," she said to the startled senators at the table. "Now. Go!"

But they didn't move, even as she dashed toward the door. Varish said, "Leia? What in the world's —"

"Didn't you hear me?" Damn fools who had never been in the war, who didn't know an urgent warning when they got one. Leia held up the paper so they could see it. "Run! Everyone get up and run!"

This certainly paints a far more interesting picture than I would have originally thought. After all, politics can get very dull. But that's not what I found most fascinating. Instead, it was the writing.

I've not read every single EU book, but I've got probably 30+ of them under my belt, and I can't recall a single instance where writing is specifically mentioned. (It's possible that I've simply forgotten) Everything is done on datapads, which is the Star Wars equivalent of a tablet. I've always wondered why in all of the civilized worlds, no one still uses a pen and paper.

Overall, I'm excited to see what Bloodlines holds for us. Finally, we'll be able to better understand not only Leia's connection to the Senate, but find out exactly what has happened to the New Republic since the downfall of the Empire. And maybe I'll actually feel invested the next time I see all of them get blown up by the First Order.