Justina Ireland teams up with Shima Shinya to bring us the newest The High Republic offering! The High Republic: The Edge of Balance gives us all the familiar Star Wars action and adventure in manga form! The art by Mizuki Sakakibara perfectly encapsulates both the fantasy of the Star Wars galaxy and the classic manga style! The story follows the Jedi stationed at the new temple on Banchii as they work to protect the peace of this outer rim planet.
SLIGHT SPOILERS AHEAD!
Meet Jedi Knight Lily Tora-Asi. Lily is assigned to the new Jedi temple on Banchii which is meant to help refugees in need after the great Hyperspace disaster and many of the other dangers the galaxy has faced as of late. Along with her wookiee mentor and the other younglings, Lily does her best to ensure the safety of her new outpost. The young Jedi knight does everything she can to learn as well as teach. And of course, when the need arises, to fight to protect those in her care.
The setting of the planet feels authentically Star Wars but also calls to mind many manga tropes. Villagers in danger, building a community, and working together for the greater good! The art and settings are wonderfully peaceful and beautiful and fit the story perfectly.
As with any Star Wars story, everyone we’ve just met ends up in incredible danger and our heroes do their best to rise to the occasion! The action is dynamic and beautifully illustrated. The mystery is compelling and draws you in. And surprise… this is Vol. 1!
Which means there’s plenty more story to come!
Bits and Pieces
The Edge of Balance is a beautiful addition to The High Republic storytelling. I have no idea on how the authors went about their collaboration but the result has a lot of wonderful and quotable moments… as all Star Wars should. Much like Tempest Runner, it really takes advantage of it’s medium to deliver on all the strengths of a manga. Great art, stunning characters, dynamic action, and some rad monsters! The story delivers and we meet plenty of new High Republic characters… and even see a couple of familiar ones… There’s even a little bonus chapter!
This is a must-read for manga fans, Jedi fans, and fans of classic samurai movies. The setting, pacing, and characters all remind me of some of my favorite Japanese classics while still feeling fresh and exciting!
- Sal P.