Tuesday, June 12, 2018

The Hutt Gambit

The Han Solo Trilogy, Vol II: The Hutt Gambit
© 1997 A.C. Crispin
352 pages



At the end of The Paradise Snare, Han Solo was a heartbroken man moving on with his life, doing his best to forget  about the woman who left him with a "Dear John" letter as he entered the pilot academy and the service of the Empire.  As The Hutt Gambit opens, readers realize how short-lived both Solo's tenure in the Imperial Navy and his determination to avoid romantic entanglements were: not only has he been cashiered from the service and blacklisted from commercial piloting, but he can't move to a planet without falling in love again.  Turning again to that faithful standby, a life of crime, Solo begins working for the Hutts and acquiring the money and reputation he needs to make it as as first-rate smuggler. Too bad the Empire has decided to slag his and other smugglers' favorite retreat, Nar Shadaa.   The Hutt Gambit serves a steady course of light action-adventure that builds Solo's character, introducing him to Jabba, Lando, the Falcon, and even Boba Fett, and ends with a desperate attempt by the smugglers to stave off an Imperial attack fleet. Fortunately it's one of older ships, left by a man who is both hesitant to commit genocide and very susceptible to bribes.  I thought the ending was contrived, to say the least, but enjoyed the characterization given to both the Hutts and Boba Fett, who -- in a nod to Return to the Jedi -- does a low pass over the Sarlaac pit while visiting Tatooine, unwittingly walking over his own grave.

4 comments:

  1. it must be extraordinarily difficult for these Star Wars/Trek authors to keep the story line straight... i read the "Cold Equations" trilogy a short while ago and it was pretty good, i thought, even though the time shifts were confusing to say the least... it was by David Mack, an okay writer if not a great one...

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    1. It's easier, I think, when there's a smaller group of authors who are doing a lot of the work, and certain authors focusing on certain series. Christopher Bennett, for instance, has been heading up the ST Enterprise books for the last couple of years.

      Re: Mack, that's the first time I've heard him described with less than fawning praise! He's best known for the Destiny series, which was an epic crossover event that addressed the Borg (their origin and their conclusion) once and for all.

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    2. i'll look for the Destiny series... tx...

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