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Star Wars: Cloak of Deception

Narrated by: Alexander Adams
Length: 6 hrs and 4 mins
4 out of 5 stars (8 ratings)

Non-member price: $34.72

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Publisher's Summary

From New York Times best-selling author James Luceno comes an all-new Star Wars adventure that reveals the action and intrigue unfolding directly before Episode I: The Phantom Menace.

Mired in greed and corruption, tangled in bureaucracy, the Galactic Republic is crumbling. In the outlying systems, where the Trade Federation maintains a stranglehold on shipping routes, tensions are boiling over - while back in the comfort of Coruscant, the hub of civilized space and seat of the Republic government, few senators seem inclined to investigate the problem. And those who suspect Supreme Chancellor Valorum of having a hand in the machinations are baffled - especially when Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn and his apprentice Obi-Wan Kenobi foil an assassination attempt on the Chancellor. With the crisis escalating, Valorum calls for an emergency trade summit. As humans and aliens gather, conspiracies sealed with large sums of money run rampant, and no one is entirely above suspicion. But the greatest threat of all remains unknown to everyone except three members of the Trade Federation who have entered into a shadowy alliance with a dark overlord. While the trio will be content with more money and fewer problems, Darth Sidious has grander, far more terrifying plans.

It is a time that tests the mettle of all those who strive to hold the Republic together - none more so than the Jedi Knights, who have long been the galaxy's best hope for preserving peace and justice. Yet despite their most valiant efforts, the meeting will explode into fiery chaos beyond everyone's worst fears....

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©2001 Lucasfilm Ltd. and TM. (P)2001 Lucasfilm Ltd. and TM. Random House Audio, a division of Random House, Inc.

Critic Reviews

"At last, what you've been waiting for: a prequel...that will explain why Chancellor Valorum fell from power." (Library Journal)
"Adams reads expertly and confidently, and his storytelling powers flow with Jedi force." (AudioFile)

What members say

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Terryn
  • Terryn
  • 08-03-2013

Good Background to Episode 1

Would you consider the audio edition of Star Wars to be better than the print version?

A lot of SW audio books are abridged. So, the print versions give you more details, but the audio books allow me to listen in the car, and so get through the story faster. The sound effects on the audio add to the story. This book was not as abridged as some others, so it still had good details.

What did you like best about this story?

This story gave some good background to Episode 1, from a different angle than Darth Plageuis did. I liked seeing Qui Gon and Obi Wan in another story. The plot was intriguing, so you needed to pay attention. The story showed how the Trade Federation came to be under Darth Sidious' influence and why it blockaded Naboo. It also showed more of how Palpatine manipulated his way to the Chancellorship, and how the Republic was becoming corrupt.

What does Alexander Adams bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

The sound effects, plus the voice characteristics add to the story.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

The Trade Federation Falls into Darthness.

Any additional comments?

I love SW anyway, but this was actually one of the more well-written books. It was less science fiction and more political intrigue, so it was more believable. The movies were written this way as well. The science should support the story, not be it. The better SW writers, like Timothy Zahn, know how to use the science at the service of the story. This book falls into that category.

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Kyle
  • Kyle
  • 27-12-2013

Largely forgettable, with some redeeming qualities

While those of Star Wars fandom should listen to this book, I found it largely forgettable. The general paucity of true character development may be why. We don't get many good glimpses into the underlying characters, but merely observe them go through somewhat predictable motions. That said, there is some redemption in the fact that it does fill in some of the gaps in the timeline and we do see a little more of the various machinations leading up to Episode I.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • William
  • 25-05-2011

Excellent

This book adds a lot of interesting background for Episode I, which made re-watching it (more) enjoyable. A must for any Star Wars fan.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Jennifer Hutt
  • 30-10-2016

J. Luceno is a master at adding depth to Palpatine

This book dovetails nicely into episode l and really gives you an idea of whats going on with the trade federation and the struggle the Republic has found it's self in to keep order. I really enjoyed Qui-Gon & Obi-Wan working together as master and apprentice, Qui-Gon is one of my favorite characters of the entire saga and Luceno really gets how he felt about the Republics situation and the way the Jedi should act.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Alex
  • Alex
  • 11-03-2010

An exciting listen

I found this to be a very fun listen. I'm a bit of a Star Wars geek, so I'm a little biased, but I thought it was fun and well thought out. I wish Ep. 1 had incorporated some of the political info found in this book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Mitch
  • Mitch
  • 06-03-2013

Serves Me Right, I Guess

That's what I get for reading a prequel to the infamous Star Wars prequel trilogy. I usually like James Luceno, which is why I gave this book a shot, but it didn't pay off. I can't remember the last time I've been so bored while reading listening to a novel.

I was expecting some deep exploration of characters like Palpatine and Qui-Gon, but this book spent about as much time investing in characters as The Phantom Menace. Other than character development, I really just wanted a fun romp through the Star Wars universe, but I couldn't even get that. This book is bogged down in page after page of politics and at no point does it really feel like a Star Wars story.

I can't recommend this book to anybody. It isn't good science fiction or fantasy and it really isn't much of a Star Wars novel. If Star Wars is what you crave, you can do much better than this.

6 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 16-10-2019

Meh

Boooooooring. I got the gist of it and the plot that helps with the prequel movies but it was a grueling experience. Good thing I listen on my drive to work northerlies I’d be upset I would never get that time back.

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  • Fish Master
  • 24-08-2019

Hahahah

The fact that the narrator sounds like Zap Brannigan it was a good book. I would recommend it

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Kat_Star
  • Kat_Star
  • 23-08-2019

Pretty boring. I don't remember half of the story.

It was pretty boring. I don't remember half of the story and I just listened to it. I will seriously consider not purchasing another Star Wars audio book by that particular author. I listened to Darth Plagueis and it was also boring by the same author. Less boring than this book but still. I am disappointed because these are pivotal events in the Star Wars story. Author also wrote Rise of Darth Vader... I will have to seriously consider if I want to bother buying it.
Otherwise the performance of the voice actor and special effects was great and the only thing carrying this dead weight of a story.

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Profile Image for jake tobiasen
  • jake tobiasen
  • 14-08-2019

BORING

Huge Star Wars fan. Love the books and movies so this really was cool to get some insight into the world leading up to the movies. Though no matter how much I wanted to learn about what happened... couldn’t change the fact this book is fully uneventful.

Definitely check it out but don’t expect much.

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Profile Image for Lex D
  • Lex D
  • 18-08-2019

Good lore

Great set up of the well known films, but gives enough in it to keep you guessing regardless of what you know is in the future (who lives, who’s who etc). Nice twists as well. Great performance, although the background “effects” can get annoying.