The eighth audiobook in the epic Fate of the Jedi series, Ascension by celebrated author Christie Golden continues the dramatic events facing the embattled Jedi Order under Luke Skywalker’s leadership. Brilliantly voiced by veteran narrator Marc Thompson, this story finds Luke and his son Ben on a desperate quest to the mysterious planet Nam Chorios, seeking an ancient relic rumored to have dangerous psychosis-inducing effects on Force users.
With anti-Jedi sentiments reaching fever pitch across the galaxy, the Order reels under scrutiny from all sides. Chief of State Natasi Daala schemes to bring the Jedi under heel once and for all, sanctioning use of deadly force to contain those displaying signs of instability. As Dark Side-corrupted Jedi continue wreaking havoc, Luke knows time is running out to solve the psychosis plague threatening his Order.
When troubling evidence surfaces hinting at a link between the Force psychosis and lethal technology developed on Nam Chorios years earlier, Luke leads a high-risk expedition to recover the dangerous relic before it can be unleashed again. But surviving the planet’s violent, meteor-battered landscape will push Luke and Ben to their limits.
Meanwhile on Coruscant, the secretive Jedi Council under acting Grand Master Kenth Hamner maneuvers for advantage against Daala’s increasingly aggressive tactics. Under constant surveillance, the Jedi walk a knife’s edge between the Light and Dark sides. Their unity frays as dangerous suspicions and buried resentments boil over under the political pressure.
In this penultimate Fate of the Jedi novel, Golden keeps upping the stakes as the Skywalkers’ desperate quest parallels the Order’s existential crisis. Thompson gives distinguished voice to the sprawling cast of characters, from the wise Luke to the embittered Chief Daala. The nonstop action will captivate new listeners while rewarding longtime fans of the Expanded Universe.
Yet the strength of Ascension lies in the difficult questions it poses as institutions clash in crisis. What sacrifices can be justified in the name of order and security? Can liberty exist without accountability? Does defiance of authority serve the greater good or selfish interest? These timeless moral dilemmas resonate in our own turbulent age of polarized politics.
As Ascension races towards its shocking climax, the Jedi stand on the brink. Golden has crafted an essential Star Wars tale carrying themes that echo through the saga. With Thompson’s voice talents bringing the story to thrilling life, this audiobook is a must-listen for every fan.
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