The Saga Continues is a post series which explores the Star Wars new canon book universe. Adventures in Wild Space is a six (and a half) book middle grade series set around 18BBY – one year after the events of Revenge of The Sith – and is written by Cavan Scott and Tom Huddleston. The book follows two children, nine-year-old Milo and ten-year-old Lina, as they hunt for their kidnapped parents alongside their trusted droid CR-8R (Crater) and Milo’s pet Kowakian monkey-lizard Morq.
At the start of the series, the rapidly growing Empire is looking to expand its territory in every direction and that includes the uncharted regions known as Wild Space. To that end they kidnap Rhyssa and Auric Graf, experienced cartographers who have spent the last 15 years charting Wild Space, often bringing their young family along with them. However, the Empire makes a big mistake during their kidnapping by leaving behind the children and their droid, who happens to have all of Rhyssa and Auric’s precious data stored inside his head.
Milo and Lina (an experienced pilot despite her young age) set off to locate and rescue their parents aboard their family ship, the Whisper Bird. Their adventure forces them into a series-spanning cat and mouse game with criminals, bounty hunters, and the Empire itself now that their parents’ kidnapper – Captain Korda – has realized his mistake and is hellbent on capturing CR-8R and the elusive Graf children in order to restore his reputation. The children travel to many new worlds and meet dozens of new people and species, a boon for Milo whose primary interest lies in studying nature.
There are several familiar faces who crop up over the course of the six books. The most well-known is Governor Tarkin who astute readers may have already spotted on one of the book covers, but some much more minor characters also get mentions such as Orson Krennic and there’s a droid who might be familiar to anyone who has ridden Star Tours at a Disney theme park.
Fans of Star Wars Rebels will definitely want to read these books too as they offer some interesting background into one of the show’s main characters. This isn’t a who’s who of galactic cameos though, and the people who do show up feel appropriate and well-used rather than only there to showcase a familiar name. If the surname Graf feels familiar, you might want to have a look at the opening pages of your copy of the Star Wars Galactic Atlas or flick open the Tales From Wild Space section of an issue of Star Wars Adventures and remember that everything is connected by
the Force Lucasfilm Story Group.
Because this series is aimed at young readers, don’t expect the level of complexity that you would get with one of the adult Star Wars novels here. There aren’t galaxy-altering revelations to be found within these pages and the plots are fairly predictable for adult readers. However, my eight-year-old son who is in the target age bracket for the series was on the edge of his seat several times during every book – so they’re obviously doing their job for their primary audience! There is some nice character development for the two children who are forced to mature rapidly when faced with a galaxy out to get them and no parents, but the majority of the supporting characters remain fairly one-dimensional. The exception to this is Captain Korda who becomes much more than your typical Imperial bad guy as the series progresses.
One little note regarding the first book in the series, The Escape. This title was released in the UK in 2016 as part of the annual World Book Day event which gives away small books for free with a World Book Day voucher, however, a physical US edition has never been published for some reason. This means that for now the only way to read The Escape, other than paying over the odds for an imported paperback version, is on Kindle. The remainder of the series: The Snare, The Nest, The Heist (also called The Steal), The Darkness (also called The Dark), The Cold, and The Rescue are all available as both paperback or ebook editions on both sides of the Atlantic ocean.
The Adventures in Wild Space series is a perfect Star Wars adventure for all the family to embark upon together. For adults, these are quick reads that will add some extra depth to the galaxy far, far away and kids will love them.