17/07/2012

Book Review: Deceived

I got Deceived by Paul S. Kemp at the same time as Revan, so I guess it should be no surprise that I have a couple of things to say about that book as well. (Though in case you are wondering, a Fatal Alliance review won't be coming up any time soon.)

The book starts with the sacking of the Jedi Temple on Coruscant and then follows the fates of three main characters during the days right afterwards: Darth Malgus, Jedi Aryn Leneer and the smuggler Zeerid Korr. The writing felt slightly more sophisticated to me than Revan's, except for the occasional strained metaphor sneaking in here and there.

On average it seems that Deceived has received better reviews than Revan, but I got roughly equal enjoyment out of both books. Deceived has some moments that stand out in your memory more than anything in Revan did (to me at least), but it also has passages that outright bored me, such as the 20-odd-page move-by-move re-narration of the "Deceived" cinematic game trailer. In the end it pretty much evens out.

Also, like in Revan, I found that once again the Sith actually made for the much more compelling character. You get some absolutely fascinating insights into the mind and background of Darth Malgus, and he goes through a very compelling character arc. I had to laugh a bit when it was revealed that for all his power he's not actually very good at Sith politics - not something that I ever expected, but it certainly explains a lot.

Comparatively, the Jedi and the smuggler fell relatively flat for me, the smuggler in particular. Their characters are mostly reduced to being focused on the one thing they care about more than anything else (Zeerid on his daughter, Aryn on her revenge), and where Malgus finds himself forced to re-evaluate his priorities, the other two just keep going on and on about the same thing without any significant development. While they are faced with physical obstacles, they always end up overcoming them quite easily. Aryn has a revelation at the very end but it comes too suddenly and randomly to be truly convincing, and the end of Zeerid's story just left me with a slight feeling of discomfort, not being quite sure what the point of it was.

The way the book ties in with the game is slightly less obvious than it was in Revan (for example Aryn Leneer isn't obviously a Guardian or a Sentinel, as she uses abilities from both), but it still caused me a fair amount of d'oh moments. For example it took me until about halfway through the book to realise that T7 was the same T7 as in the game. And until Malgus mentioned that a trooper had once set off a grenade in his face, I never even realised that that was him in the "Hope" cinematic. It's all tied together in so many ways...

1 comment :

  1. Skip Fatal Alliance if you can. It's not very good. Or at least don't pay full price for it.

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