Finally, the last episode of New Jedi Order, The Unifying Force by James Luceno. It is one big action packed finish, starting with a prisoner extraction complete with information smuggling, speeder pursuit and dogfights. Then, a big Vong attack on Mon Calamari, currently capital planet of the young Alliance. After that, everything converges on Coruscant: Zonama Sekot, both fleets and all major heroes and villians come together to wrap things up.
The Unifying Force is non-stop action cover to cover. There are no more attempts at character or story building; to use popular words: “Now begins the killing, followed by light salad.” We get huge space battles, invasion on ground and melee action, everything that is fun to read. We are never told why, though. Why Coruscant Yuuzhan’tar? Even some minor characters voice the question, but do not press for serious consideration. Why does the Alliance risk everything for a worthless piece of space junk? Nobody knows, but they do and nobody should be surprised by the outcome. I was not convinced by all resolutions or their foreshadowing, but they are good enough.
The end is quite open. It is not clear what happens with the Yuuzhan Vong, Zonoma Sekot, the Jedi and the Galactic Alliance. The main characters, now war heroes, are left with a galaxy to rebuild. I wonder how they will go about it and wether they will be able to keep competing factions together again. The next books sit on my shelves so I will be able to find out — after a break.