Young Jedi Knights #9
Delusions of Grandeur
by Kevin J. Anderson & Rebecca Moesta
Published by Berkley
Scott's Rating: 3 out of 4
SPOILERS WARNING!!! DON'T READ IF YOU WANT TO BE SURPRISED!!
The story about the Diversity Alliance and Raynar Thul's father continues.
The students are just hanging around the Academy when Lowbacca's friend Raaba returns. She is a Diversity Alliance member. In case you forgot, the Diversity Alliance is anti-human. Anyway, Raaba asks Lowie to go with her back to Kashyykk to announce that she is still alive. He agrees and takes off with her leaving EmTee Dee behind.
As he leaves, Luke brings a new recruit to the Academy - Lusa, the cenetaur girl from the Crystal Star novel. Turns out she was brainwashed by the Alliance, but broke away after they asked her to murder some humans. She uneasily joins the Academy and Raynar falls for her. But what will become of Lowbacca?
Meanwhile, Zekk, now a bounty hunter, accepts a job from a mysterious stranger to hunt down Tyko Thul, kidnapped by IG-88 last time. Zekk agrees, then finds out that the stranger was Bornan Thul, his true bounty. After consulting Boba Fett, Zekk decides to hunt Tyko first, then capture Bornan. But he runs into trouble with Dengar along the way.
Eventually, the Young Jedi Knights go to Mechis to run Tyko Thul's droid factory while he is gone. There, they find Tyko alive and well. Turns out IG-88 was Tyko's own robot and he faked his kidnapping to lure out Bornan. The kids are ticked, but get over it. They give Emteedee a make-over and re-wire IG-88. In the end, the kids and Zekk get into a battle with Dengar while Lowbacca joins the Diversity Alliance with Raaba and his sister.
It is pretty cool to see the bounty hunters featured in these stories. After not hearing much about them for a while, it is a nice change. I thought this story had a few good action scenes. Nothing major, but it was still good. I liked what was done to EmTeeDee. They upgraded him and gave him repulsor jets to float around. Pretty Cool! The cover by Dave Dorman is also very nice, a great depiction of IG-88.
Not much really happened in this story. It was not anything that couldn't have been tacked on to two other books. I guess it is what Darin calls 'Bridge Syndrome'. Fans of IG-88 might also not be pleased with his reprogramming by the kids. They rewire him not to kill ala Terminator 2. In fact, I just realized how similar the two stories are. He's a vicious robot killer in the first story, then wimped out in the second! Oh, well, maybe he'll override his programming again. Finally, there does not seem to be some clear idea about bounty hunters in these stories. They're either noble guys or trying to kill you. One says that they will not interfere with another's hunt, while another will kill you to get a bounty. I just thought they were all scum! But that's just my opinion, I could be wrong.
The leader of the Diversity Alliance is a Twilek with one brain tail missing, and she's got a mechanical eyeball stuck in the stump. And I thought MY kindergarten teacher had eyes in the back of her head!