The 5 Best Star Wars: The High Republic Books

The High Republic era in the Star Wars universe is a rich tapestry of stories set approximately 200 years before the events of the Skywalker Saga. This period highlights the Jedi Order at its peak and introduces a plethora of new characters, settings, and conflicts.

The upcoming series, “The Acolyte,” is set at the end of this era, making these books essential reading for fans looking to understand the context and background leading up to the show. Here are the five best Star Wars: The High Republic books, each offering a unique perspective on this vibrant period.

1. Light of the Jedi by Charles Soule

Synopsis: “Light of the Jedi” kicks off the High Republic series with a catastrophic event—the Great Hyperspace Disaster. The novel follows various Jedi and Republic characters as they respond to the crisis and face the emerging threat of the Nihil, a group of space marauders. Key characters include Jedi Masters Avar Kriss, Elzar Mann, and Loden Greatstorm.

Why It’s a Good Read: Charles Soule’s storytelling prowess shines as he introduces readers to the ideals and challenges of the Jedi Order during this era. The book provides a comprehensive foundation for the High Republic storyline, making it indispensable for understanding subsequent events and characters. The immersive world-building and high-stakes drama make it a page-turner.

Connection to The Acolyte: While “Light of the Jedi” is set before the timeline of “The Acolyte,” it establishes the political and social climate that will be critical in understanding the transition from the High Republic to the dark times hinted at in the series.

Light of the Jedi by Charles Soule

2. The Rising Storm by Cavan Scott

Synopsis: “The Rising Storm” continues the saga with the Republic Fair on Valo, meant to showcase the unity and progress of the galaxy. However, the Nihil have other plans. Jedi Knights like Stellan Gios, Elzar Mann, and Bell Zettifar face personal and collective trials as they battle the anarchic forces of the Nihil.

Why It’s a Good Read: Cavan Scott masterfully escalates the tension with intricate character development and intense action sequences. The book delves deeper into the personal lives of the Jedi, exploring their struggles and growth. The high stakes and emotional depth make it a standout installment in the High Republic series.

Connection to The Acolyte: “The Rising Storm” further sets the stage for the eventual decline of the Jedi’s influence, which is the backdrop for “The Acolyte.” Understanding the victories and failures of the Jedi in this book provides context for the challenges they face in the series.

The Rising Storm by Cavan Scott

3. Into the Dark by Claudia Gray

Synopsis: “Into the Dark” follows Jedi Padawan Reath Silas, who prefers the archives to adventure. His mission changes when a journey to the frontier goes awry, and he and his companions find themselves stranded on an abandoned space station. They soon discover ancient dangers that test their courage and resolve.

Why It’s a Good Read: Claudia Gray excels at character-driven stories, and “Into the Dark” is no exception. The book offers a mix of mystery, horror, and adventure, providing a fresh perspective on the Jedi Order through Reath’s eyes. The atmospheric tension and unique setting make it a compelling read.

Connection to The Acolyte: The ancient threats and dark secrets uncovered in “Into the Dark” hint at the underlying forces that might be explored in “The Acolyte.” This book’s focus on lesser-known Jedi offers insights into the diversity of the Order during the High Republic era.

Into the Dark by Claudia Gray

4. The Fallen Star by Claudia Gray

Synopsis: “The Fallen Star” chronicles the dire consequences of the Nihil’s most devastating attack yet on the Starlight Beacon, a symbol of hope for the Republic. The story follows familiar characters like Avar Kriss, Elzar Mann, and Stellan Gios as they fight to save the station and those aboard it.

Why It’s a Good Read: This novel is a heart-wrenching exploration of loss, resilience, and heroism. Claudia Gray’s ability to intertwine multiple character arcs against a backdrop of impending doom creates a gripping narrative that keeps readers on edge. The emotional weight and stakes are higher than ever, making it an essential read.

Connection to The Acolyte: The destruction of the Starlight Beacon and the ripple effects throughout the galaxy foreshadow the darker times ahead, setting a crucial context for “The Acolyte.” The themes of struggle and sacrifice resonate with the series’ premise.

The Fallen Star by Claudia Gray

5. Out of the Shadows by Justina Ireland

Synopsis: “Out of the Shadows” follows Jedi Knight Vernestra Rwoh, her Padawan Imri Cantaros, and aspiring inventor Sylvestri Yarrow as they navigate political intrigue and sinister plots. Their journey reveals the complexities of the Republic’s reach and the hidden threats that loom over it.

Why It’s a Good Read: Justina Ireland brings a youthful energy to the High Republic narrative, focusing on younger Jedi and their allies. The interplay of personal ambition, loyalty, and moral dilemmas enriches the story. The novel’s exploration of political machinations adds depth to the High Republic universe.

Connection to The Acolyte: This book’s exploration of the darker corners of the Republic and the hidden dangers the Jedi face provides thematic and narrative links to “The Acolyte.” The younger characters’ perspectives offer a glimpse into the generational shifts within the Jedi Order.

Out of the Shadows by Justina Ireland


These five books offer a comprehensive look at the High Republic era, setting the stage for “The Acolyte.” Each novel brings unique characters, thrilling adventures, and profound themes to the forefront, enriching the Star Wars universe. Whether you are a seasoned fan or new to this era of the Star Wars timeline, these books are essential reads to fully appreciate the context and intricacies leading up to the much-anticipated series.