Star Wars literature continues to fill in gaps in the new canon, and those new stories continue to deliver gifts to the growing list of people who speak to their appreciation of the Prequel Trilogy.
More than most, the character of Padmé Amidala captured the imagination of fans, who have long yearned for more backstory.
Enter author E. K. Johnston, who is penning Queen’s Shadow….
“She’s the character that got me back into Star Wars when I was 14,” said Johnston to Dan Brooks at San Diego Comic-Con. “She’s the character that’s helped me make all of my friends in Star Wars. I was 14, and she was 14 [in Star Wars: The Phantom Menace], and I thought we would get along pretty well once I learned to be a super spy like the rest of her friends. And so, I really wanted more of that story.
“When they were like, ‘Hey, do you want to write this book? And I was like, ‘Do I get the handmaidens?’ and they were like, ‘Yes!,’ we just rolled from there. So it’s fantastic to take these super-smart, super-fantastic girls, and just write their stories and their relationships and all that kind of stuff.”
The synopsis on the Official Books site reads:
Queen’s Shadow by E. K. Johnston: Written by the #1 New York Times best-selling author of Ahsoka! When Padmé Naberrie, “Queen Amidala” of Naboo, steps down from her position, she is asked by the newly-elected queen to become Naboo’s representative in the Galactic Senate. Padmé is unsure about taking on the new role, but cannot turn down the request to serve her people. Together with her most loyal handmaidens, Padmé must figure out how to navigate the treacherous waters of politics and forge a new identity beyond the queen’s shadow.
Asked for more details, Johnston was careful not to spill any beans but did give a vague explanation of what we might read when the book debuts next March.
“The timeline is actually pretty compressed, and I can’t get into that very much,” she explained. ” I think a lot of what Padmé does in the movies goes on inside her head. So her brilliance and her political acumen, you don’t necessarily see it play out in the movies.
“Because she’s so smart, she doesn’t explain what she’s doing,” added Johnston. “Getting to kind of get inside her head a little bit, and write from the perspective of inside her head, you sort of see how smart and how talented and how deeply compassionate she is…”