By George Bate
The events of The Mandalorian’s debut season are brought to life in an approachable and exciting new junior novel. Published by Disney-Lucasfilm Press and written by Joe Schreiber, The Mandalorian: Junior Novel follows in the footsteps of previously released middle-grade Star Wars adaptations of theatrically released films and other television shows by expertly condensing a wealth of characters, plot lines, and events into a concise, entertaining novel for younger readers.
It’s important to keep in mind the target audience of any Star Wars project and the junior novel adaptation of The Mandalorian is no exception. The title obviously indicates the book is a junior novel and, in that regard, it excels. The book offers a great opportunity for younger readers to re-experience the events of The Mandalorian or even experience it for the first time for those who haven’t seen the Disney+ series yet. Schreiber writes in an approachable and age-appropriate manner, while never compromising on what makes The Mandalorian’s tale so great.
The junior novel intelligently disregards certain elements of the first season, such as the opening capture of the Mythrol, which makes the story, in a written format, come together more seamlessly. As this is a novel and not a series of junior comics, it makes sense that certain components of the first season that are less relevant to the overarching narrative are removed. While these moments are fantastic in viewing The Mandalorian, Schreiber makes the right decision in excluding what’s not completely necessary and focusing more exclusively on framing the season as a coherent narrative.
Regardless of the novel’s intended audience, there’s plenty to be enjoyed by fans of all ages in The Mandalorian: Junior Novel. For adult readers, the novel presents itself as a more lightweight, straightforward retelling of a season fans universally enjoyed. As with the adult novelizations of Star Wars films, it’s just cool to consume the story again in a different medium like a book. It’s one thing to watch characters like Cara Dune and Kuiil come to life on screen, but it’s another to turn page after page and further immerse oneself in their stories, especially at such a formative age.
The Mandalorian: Junior Novel retells the events of the Disney+ series’ first season in a fast paced, cohesive narrative geared toward younger readers. The book is a fun read for kids and adults alike in reliving the events of The Mandalorian in a new way.
Images courtesy of Disney-Lucasfilm Press, Disney+, and Lucasfilm