The New Jedi Order: Wikis


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The characters from The New Jedi Order series, based on NJO book covers.

The New Jedi Order (or New Jedi Order or NJO) is a series of nineteen science fiction novels, published from 1999 to 2003, set in the Star Wars Expanded Universe. The series revolves around the Yuuzhan Vong invasion of the galaxy 21–26 years after the events depicted in Return of the Jedi. Additional stories, generally published as e-book novellas (some published as recently as 2006), take the total number of published NJO-related stories to twenty-six.


Plot synopsis

The series begins twenty-one years after the Rebel Alliance destroyed the second Death Star. The New Republic is facing internal conflict while trying to maintain peace. A new, powerful enemy, known as the Yuuzhan Vong, emerges from the outer galaxy, beginning what will be known as the Yuuzhan Vong invasion. The Jedi, along with the New Republic, struggle to resist this new alien race while it steadily pushes forward, annihilating or occupying different parts of the galaxy.

Character arcs

As the longest continuous series of novels in the EU, the NJO was able to establish several long-term character arcs. Many new or previously underused characters were put into the spotlight and were developed extensively over the course of the series. Among the most prominent character arcs:

  • Ganner Rhysode: Rhysode began the series as an arrogant young Jedi, a trait best shown when, on assignment with Corran Horn, he mocked Horn’s inability to use telekinesis, claiming that this made him a lesser Jedi. Rhysode gradually became more humble over the course of the series, especially after watching many of his friends die on the mission to Myrkr. After Jacen Solo was captured during this mission, Rhysode went searching for him, even though, in Jacen’s words, “we weren’t even friends”; Rhysode died fighting thousands of Yuuzhan Vong warriors so that Jacen and Vergere could escape. It was foreseen that in the future, the Yuuzhan Vong would eventually worship a new god called “the Ganner”, who guarded the entrance of the Yuuzhan Vong realm of the dead, referring admiringly, to Rhysode’s last stand.
  • Tahiri Veila: Not fully developed in her original role—Anakin’s friend from Junior Jedi Knights—Tahiri was pushed to a starring role in the NJO. When the Yuuzhan Vong captured Yavin 4, she was taken prisoner and subjected to experiments designed to create a Vong-human hybrid. Anakin eventually rescued her, which stirred the romantic feelings they had had for years; when Anakin died above Myrkr, Tahiri was devastated. At this time, the Yuuzhan Vong personality implanted in her began to periodically take control, and Tahiri would wrestle with this for the duration of the series. Unlike most of the other Jedi, she had a peculiar empathy with the Yuuzhan Vong; at the end of the series, she chose to stay on Zonoma Sekot in order to continue learning about the Yuuzhan Vong and to help them build a better society.
  • Jacen Solo: Jacen underwent perhaps the most complete and controversial arc of the NJO. He began the series as someone who actively questioned whether it was right to use the Force as a weapon. After being captured by the Yuuzhan Vong he withstood weeks of torture at the hands of Vergere, an Old Republic Jedi and Vong familiar. He emerged with a new view of the Force, including a willingness to use it offensively. During the battle to retake Coruscant, Jacen achieved a state of oneness with the Force that gave him a “perfect mastery.”

Character deaths

Many major characters, including Chewbacca, die within the New Jedi Order series, an unusual departure from typical Star Wars stories. In a number of New Jedi Order books the characters who die seemed to be of key importance in the novels. The books also revealed the death of some major characters in the Star Wars universe that were not introduced in the movie trilogies, including Anakin Solo, the youngest son of Han and Leia.


In 1999, Mark Hamill reprised his role as Luke Skywalker in a brief speaking role for the series. Hamill spoke as Luke in a TV commercial for the first novel in the series, Vector Prime. In the commercial, Luke recalls the state that the galaxy is in at the present, compared to the times of the Empire.

Year Name Author Notes
1999 Vector Prime R.A. Salvatore
2006 Boba Fett: A Practical Man Karen Traviss e-book novella
2000 Dark Tide I: Onslaught Michael Stackpole
Dark Tide: Siege Michael Stackpole canceled
2000 Dark Tide II: Ruin Michael Stackpole
2000 Agents of Chaos I: Hero’s Trial James Luceno
2000 Agents of Chaos II: Jedi Eclipse James Luceno
2000 Balance Point Kathy Tyers
2002 Emissary of the Void Greg Keyes short story
Knightfall I: Jedi Storm Michael Jan Friedman canceled
Knightfall II: Jedi Blood Michael Jan Friedman canceled
Knightfall III: Jedi Fire Michael Jan Friedman canceled
2001 Recovery (set during Edge of Victory I: Conquest) Troy Denning e-book novella
2001 Edge of Victory I: Conquest Greg Keyes
2001 Edge of Victory II: Rebirth Greg Keyes
2001 Star by Star Troy Denning
2002 Dark Journey Elaine Cunningham
2002 The Apprentice (set during Dark Journey) Elaine Cunningham short story
2002 Enemy Lines I: Rebel Dream Aaron Allston
2002 Enemy Lines II: Rebel Stand Aaron Allston
2002 Traitor Matthew Stover
2002 Destiny's Way Walter Jon Williams
2002 Ylesia (set during Destiny's Way) Walter Jon Williams e-book novella
2003 Force Heretic I: Remnant Sean Williams & Shane Dix
2004 Equals and Opposites Nathan Butler comic book
2003 Force Heretic II: Refugee Sean Williams & Shane Dix
2003 Or Die Trying Sean Williams & Shane Dix short story
2003 Force Heretic III: Reunion Sean Williams & Shane Dix
2003 The Final Prophecy Greg Keyes
2003 The Unifying Force James Luceno

Criticism and reaction

Though somewhat financially successful, reactions remain mixed. Several authors affiliated with Lucasfilm have also gone on record as decrying the New Jedi Order: Timothy Zahn, who felt the series was too dark and straying from the “feel” of Star Wars, and Randy Stradley, who alleged that Del Rey used an invasion idea originating with Dark Horse and took it in directions they did not intend. Michael Stackpole, just after the publication of his NJO Dark Tide books, when asked what his new BattleTech books would involve, responded, “An alien invasion? No, a thousand times, no.” However, author John Ostrander read and enjoyed the series.

In an interview published in The Unifying Force, Shelly Shapiro, the Editorial Director of Del Rey, expressed some regret over the “grimmer” aspects of the series and the Yuuzhan Vong themselves, as well as the timing of the novel Star by Star, coming so soon after the September 11 attacks.

External links

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