The final book in the Alphabet Squadron trilogy follows up on the groundwork laid by it’s predecessors in a big way. The book, like the others in the trilogy, is personal, heavy, and fulfilling all at once. Their growth. Their loss. Their trauma and victories. Alexander Freed continues to give these characters we’ve followed and grown with, real depth and complexity.
If you’ve enjoyed the series thus far, the final entry is well worth the journey.
SLIGHT SPOILERS AHEAD!
While General Syndulla is present throughout the trilogy she really shines in this one. Her presence explored a bit more and as a Star Wars Rebels superfan(TM), I really enjoyed reconnecting with her. Hera’s strength, determination, and wishes all connect to that pilot we met so long ago when the rebellion was just a spark. At the end of the war, when so much has changed for her, we see what gives her the strength to keep fighting.
Shadow Wing continues to organize it’s forces under the guidance of Soran Keize. The story dives into the Imperial point of view under these new and devastating circumstances. As the Imperial power crumbles, Keize leads his squadron the only way he knows how. But more importantly, his understanding of their new place in the galaxy is explored throughout the book as he tries to find the best way to serve his people. And find a future for them.
While she still retains some of her mystery, I think we, and her companions, start to understand Kairos more. Amidst the chaos, Kairos’ change might be the most profound. And sometimes finding a future means letting go of the past.
Dead Heroes No Leaders
Wyl Lark’s journey from the idealistic archetype has been full of devastating trials and loss. From the innocent Polynean who left his village to help, to the leader of his squadron in name and action, the war has changed Wyl. Wyl and Nath have always had trouble finding ways that work for them both. Wyl wants what is best for his people. What is best for Home. It’s Wyl’s ideals and willingness to find a different way that separates him from so many. Despite everything he’s been through, Wyl remains open, honest, and willing to sacrifice what he can to save lives.
The Empty Sun
Chass seems changed by her time with The Empty Sun. Her anger and impatience remain, but she also hears the voices and teachings of the cult in her own head. Will she keep searching for that noble end? Just like her fallen friends and heroes? Or will she turn away from that Hero’s end to find some way towards a future? And without a war, without sacrifice, what is a future for someone like Chass? Can someone like her ever really find peace?
All the paths come together at The Battle of Jakku. While it might seem a bit anticlimactic having a trilogy end at a battle that has been explored in other media, the story told here remains personal to the characters we have followed all this way. While the battle and it’s outcome are familiar, the characters and their journeys are the unknowns that make the story compelling.
A New Dawn
If you’ve followed the pilots of Alphabet Squadron this far, I’d say this book is a must read. I’d also add in Hera fans to that list. This book, like the rest of the trilogy, gets into the choices, consequences, and weight on the people who fight it. Just like the title, Victory’s Price is definitely a theme deeply explored here.
I really enjoyed the entire trilogy, getting to know new dimensional characters, and reconnecting with a few old favorites. It’s really hard to dive into what makes this story unique without spoiling the entire trilogy. Suffice to say, this is a story built on it’s characters and their trials. If you want to experience the end of the war through the eyes of those who fight it, this is the trilogy for you.
- Sal P.