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Book Rating (94)

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Tarkin: Star Wars

Unabridged Audiobook

Written By: James Luceno

Narrated By: Euan Morton

Date: November 2014

Duration: 9 hours 28 minutes


A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. . . .

Bestselling Star Wars veteran James Luceno gives Grand Moff Tarkin the Star Wars: Darth Plagueis treatment, bringing the legendary character from A New Hope to full, fascinating life.

He’s the scion of an honorable and revered family. A dedicated soldier and distinguished legislator. Loyal proponent of the Republic and trusted ally of the Jedi Order. Groomed by the ruthless politician and Sith Lord who would be Emperor, Governor Wilhuff Tarkin rises through the Imperial ranks, enforcing his authority ever more mercilessly . . . and zealously pursuing his destiny as the architect of absolute dominion.

Rule through the fear of force rather than force itself, he advises his Emperor. Under Tarkin’s guidance, an ultimate weapon of unparalleled destruction moves ever closer to becoming a terrifying reality. When the so-called Death Star is completed, Tarkin is confident that the galaxy’s lingering pockets of Separatist rebellion will be brought to heel—by intimidation . . . or annihilation.

Until then, however, insurgency remains a genuine threat. Escalating guerrilla attacks by resistance forces and newfound evidence of a growing Separatist conspiracy are an immediate danger the Empire must meet with swift and brutal action. And to bring down a band of elusive freedom fighters, the Emperor turns to his most formidable agents: Darth Vader, the fearsome new Sith enforcer as remorseless as he is mysterious; and Tarkin—whose tactical cunning and cold-blooded efficiency will pave the way for the Empire’s supremacy . . . and its enemies’ extinction.

Praise for Tarkin
“Tarkin tells a compelling tale of mystery while revealing much about a character who has fueled debate among fans since 1977, as well as the oppressive regime he represents. [James] Luceno has proven once again that the villains of Star Wars are as much fun as the good guys.”—New York Daily News
“Another home run in the new canon . . . This is the highest and best distillation of Tarkin stories, old and new, we’ve ever been given.”—Big Shiny Robot
“A spectacular novel, with the intrigue, action, and profound characterization we have come to expect from the pen of Luceno . . . [Tarkin] provides a nuanced, multi-faceted anti-hero who is captivating, ominous, and calculating; in many ways, this is an origin tale of the Empire [and] a fascinating portrait of one of the more popular characters in the Original Trilogy. It may very well be one my favorite Star Wars novels.”—Coffee with Kenobi
“A fascinating look at the pathos of one of the galaxy’s most criminally underused characters.”—


  • Christian McGarry

    This is pretty much the only audio book that I have listened to more than once. The story was much better than expected and the narration was excellent. A must have for any Star Wars fan.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful.

  • Liam Brady

    the book is great and the narrator is great at shifting the pitch of his voice so he sounds like someone else; I thought I was licensing to more then one person.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Alec Davis

    This book is spectacular. James Luceno hits yet another Star Wars book straight out of the park. This is a compelling tale about probably the most criminally underappreciated villain in all of Star Wars. The narrator is also brilliant and does the voices of Tarkin, Vader, and Palpatine amazingly well. His voice is never boring and he reads the book like a pro. Highly recommended.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Sergio C.

    I enjoy the book. Luceno does know how to write Star Wars characters, but given how vast the galaxy is, I am saddened by how simple the stakes are for this journey. On the flip side, I am glad we get to enjoy the journey of Tarkin and explore him further than we did in the movies.

  • Ben C.

    This is not only the best Star Wars book I’ve read/listened to, but also one of the best audiobooks I’ve ever heard. The narrator sounds EXACTLY like Tarkin, and nothing in this book feels out of place or forced. There’s even fantastic inner dialogue from the Emperor. I may have to listen through again, it was that good. The author made Tarkin one of my favorite ancillary characters, just off of this book alone. If you’re on the fence, just get it. You won’t be disappointed.

  • John Stockman

    A surprisingly in-depth back story for a character that appeared in only one actual Star Wars movie (Episode IV- A New Hope). The novel takes you on a journey back through Tarkin's life and chronicles his rise through the ranks and reveals the very close ties between the Emperor, Vader and the Grand Moff. The tale revolves around the first hint at a rebellion forming five years after the fall of the Old Republic and the run up to the completion of the first mobile battle station (aka Death Star). Well chronicled and full of action and strategy interwoven with the story of Tarkin. Narration is overall well done. However, the voice of Darth Vader was a bit off. Not everyone can speak like James Earl Jones, right? Vader and Tarkin are teamed up in the story so it is full of good interactions and insight into both characters. Well done!

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by James Luceno

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Tarkin: Star Wars, James Luceno
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This title is due for release on November 4, 2014.

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