• Zilastra brings a new challenge to the Jedi Council in Star Wars: The Living Force.
  • Pirates like Zilastra test the Jedi’s strengths and weaknesses before the prequel trilogy.
  • The Living Force highlights the cracks in the Jedi Council that led to their downfall.



In an excerpt from the upcoming Star Wars novel, Star Wars: The Living Force, the Jedi Council faces a formidable new adversary: a pirate queen named Zilastra. The Living Force, written by John Jackson Miller, is a canonical Star Wars book set just before Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace in the Star Wars timeline. The novel will see the Jedi retreating further and further away from the galaxy, setting the stage for the events of the prequel trilogy and the Star Wars movies and TV shows that follow.

Pre-order Star Wars: The Living Force on Amazon

The excerpt of Star Wars: The Living Force shared by Gizmodo introduces the sardonic personality of pirate queen Zilastra and offers a peek into her piracy. Author of the book John Jackson Miller provided further context in his post on X, sharing that “Zilastra was a lot of fun to write.”

This excerpt, along with the period in which the novel takes place, positions The Living Force as a thrilling book exploring the cracks in the Jedi Council that ultimately led to their downfall.



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These Pirates Clearly Aren’t Afraid Of The Jedi

The Jedi Council including Oppo Rancisis in an image shot from high above

It’s clear from the excerpt of The Living Force that Zilastra and her band of pirates, the Riftwalkers, have been running rampant throughout the galaxy, gaining a reputation for themselves. This begs the question of where the Jedi are and what, if anything, they’re doing to stop the pirates. Given the brazen behavior of Zilastra and the Riftwalkers, however, it seems clear that, at minimum, the Jedi haven’t been successful in stopping them.

This begs the question of where the Jedi are and what, if anything, they’re doing to stop the pirates.

None of this bodes well for the Jedi. While Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith and the events that follow have already made clear that the Jedi were seriously flawed and inevitably fell because of it, this novel represents a new issue. Yes, the Jedi fell to Palpatine and Order 66 in Revenge of the Sith, but that event represented (to some degree) a known threat. The Jedi and the Sith had long been foes, and their history and the danger the Sith posed to the Jedi were well-established.

The Living Force suggests that, even outside the Jedi’s main nemesis, the Order was weakened and vulnerable. If space pirates were not only able to run amok but also felt bold enough to take on the Council itself, it’s clear the Jedi had already begun falling long before The Phantom Menace. This will no doubt also align with Star Wars’ upcoming TV show Star Wars: The Acolyte, which is set approximately 100 years before The Phantom Menace. All in all, Star Wars is making it clear that the Jedi had significant problems long before Anakin Skywalker arrived on the scene.

Sources: Gizmodo, John Jackson Miller


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