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Thrawn (Star Wars)

Narrated by: Marc Thompson
Length: 16 hrs and 56 mins
5 out of 5 stars (264 ratings)
Non-member price: $46.17
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Publisher's Summary

In this definitive novel, listeners will follow Thrawn's rise to power - uncovering the events that created one of the most iconic villains in Star Wars history.

©2017 Timothy Zahn (P)2017 Random House Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Absolutely Fantastic

Thrawn by Timothy Zahn is a perfect Star Wars story with the advantage of the battles feeling realistic unlike the ridiculous tactics seen in the movies or even by Thrawn as seen in Star Wars rebels. In my opinion this book is the best rendition of the character Thrawn yet

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Brilliantly crafted novel

The narration was magnificent and the story drives a good pace. Enjoyed every minute of it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Fascinating Thrawn, imperial and dark side lore

it was so intriguing to hear of Thrown's background and motivs for joining the Empire.
hope we see more from Elie and his future.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing

such a brilliant book - a really in depth story line. would recommend to any star wars fan.

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unbelievably good

explains brilliantly the rise of one of the greatest characters in the star wars universe

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An Aural Feast

A compelling narrative about Star Wars' very own Sherlock Holmes. Story sags a little in the Coruscant chapters but builds to a fitting, somewhat tragic conclusion. Performance of the narration was varied and engaging.

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Easily the best post Disney Star Wars book.

some background sound effects are a little loud but that's the only issue with this book.

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What an amazing psychological journey!

I had never thought to be so engrossed and engaged by a story purely based on the empire and it's political and military nuances, but this story and the way Marc Thompson voiced the characters had me wanting a lot more! Brilliant, loved it!

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Awesome!

Entertaining from the start to end! Voice performances were great. Unreal getting an insight into how Thrawn became who he was in the Thrawn trilogy.

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Great story, a pleasure to listen to.

Thrawn is a must to read, or listen, especially if you are a Star Wars fan.
The story is amazing, and kept me listening hours at a time.
highly recommend.

Thank you Timothy Zahn

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  • Michael Hicks
  • 06-09-2017

Nice To Have Thrawn Back, But...

Timothy Zahn returns to the Star Wars universe with Thrawn, the titular character that first appeared in print back in the 1990s and helped reignite fan’s interest in a galaxy far, far away. 1991, when Heir to the Empire was first published, presented a very desolate landscape for Star Wars fans, and was certainly a far cry from the series current-day resurgence. Back then, we only had three films – Episodes IV, V, and VI. There were no prequels, no other sequels, no real line of novels, video games, Funko Pops! and cartoon series. Fans were starved for more stories set in their favorite cinematic series. Timothy Zahn helped change all that with his initial Thrawn Trilogy, reintroducing us to the heroes of the Rebel Alliance cum New Republic five years after the The Return of the Jedi and the Battle for Endor. Right from the outset, Thrawn was a bold new villain and cunning strategist, and an immediately iconic one at that.

Nowadays, Star Wars is everywhere. The series of Expanded Universe novels was relaunched in the build-up for The Force Awakens, and a series of tie-in novels helped lay the new groundwork between Episodes VI and VII. One question that kept coming up among fans and readers was, Where is Grand Admiral Thrawn? Was there even a Grand Admiral Thrawn anymore, or had his enduring legacy between swept away in the relaunch?

Well, now we know. Thrawn is, indeed, a canonical part of the new Expanded Universe – and still an enormous threat for the galaxy to reckon with. With this novel, Zahn dives into origin story territory, detailing the blue-skinned alien’s rise to power within the xenophobic and fascistic Empire. For readers of Zahn’s original Thrawn novels, the character will be intimately familiar. This is still the same character, his keen intellect and powers of observation fully intact, and reintroduced into the Star Wars timeline between Episode III and Rogue One.

I, for one, am thrilled to have Thrawn back in action again. This is a thinking-man’s villain, one who uses his brains above all else, never relying solely on brawn and bluster to get through the day, but rather through sly, Sherlock Holmes’ style observation and chess-like maneuvers. It’s great to see him again outwitting his opponents and manipulating his way through the Empire’s ranks. The story suffers, though, with a side-plot revolving around Arihnda Price, an ex-miner forced by external powers into the Empire’s employ. The dual narratives provide insight into the political machinations of the Emperor’s regime, and it’s interesting to listen to how both maneuver through the Empire in order to meet their own goals. The biggest problem, though, is that Price’s story is a bit dull with its focus on politics and takes a long while to really get anywhere. The same is slightly true of Thrawn’s narrative as well. While it’s interesting to see him work his way up the ranks, we also know how this story ends. The plot device hanging in the middle of this story, operating behind the scenes and driving Thrawn and Price toward their end-goals, is one that Star Wars fans will be able to peg right from the outset.

Thrawn presents little in the way of surprise, and given the nature of the Empire and the character’s carving their way into and through it, it’s also difficult to find reason to root for any of them. Anyone who is familiar with Star Wars knows exactly what the evil Empire is, what it’s all about, and what it represents. Do we really care, ultimately, if any of these characters succeed in reaching the top of Mount Evil, particularly in light of the story’s lack of worthwhile protagonists? Thrawn works well when we have a central heroic, good-guy (or gal) character to root for, and there’s none of that here. While Thrawn is interesting, it’s never really very exciting or fun, and it never reaches the heights of greatness exhibited in the original Thrawn Trilogy. Sadly, from a story perspective, this book’s a bit of a dud.

Thankfully, Marc Thompson’s narration is brilliant. After listening to his voice talents on Chuck Wendig’s Star Wars trilogy, I was really chomping at the bit to see what Marc would do with Zahn’s novel. In this respect, I was not the least bit disappointed. He presents a number of varied voices, tones, and speech patterns, and does an absolutely superb job all around. The use of sound effects and music throughout help up the ante on the production front, reminding us regularly with its familiar score and laser blasts that this is a legit Star Wars story.

83 of 89 people found this review helpful

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  • Jeremy schulz
  • 13-04-2017

Un-Surprisingly, Beautiful

Zahn and Thompson come together once more to weave an exceptional story! Zahn has woven another patch into the quilt that is Star Wars. His writing is superb, and thankfully we have someone just as brilliant to narrate! I can not applaud this enough! I also plan on purchasing the physical copy, because apparently there is a pull out poster featuring the Grand Admiral himself! But do yourself a favor and jump into this audiobook!


A few notable aspects that I can remember (re listening after this!) NO SPOILERS!

The story of Thrawn's ascendancy to Grand Admiral.

The unique Chiss twist of the importance in utilizing and preserving resources, which bordered on compassion for others.

The tie in to Star Wars Rebels! Providing a really rich background into why certain events occurred in the show.

A beautiful balance of political intrigue (which I ABSOLUTELY love in the Star Wars universe!), and intense action scenes!

One detail I really appreciated was the depiction and hesitance of Coruscant's underbelly. We typically see this through the eyes of force wielders or soldiers, neither of which really experience the emotions that an everyday person would when confronted with the slums.

62 of 71 people found this review helpful

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  • jason lewis
  • 23-04-2018

Thrawn was ok!

I liked the book overall but only the Thrawn story, not the Price side venture.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Not a Bot, seriously lets talk about our human emotions
  • 25-04-2017

Miss the old voice

Love it. But I miss the old voice for Thrawn. The new one lines up with Rebels, but is less powerful.

22 of 26 people found this review helpful

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  • Admiralu
  • 06-05-2017

The Sherlock of Star Wars

Timothy Zahn is one of the masters of the Star Wars universe. Thrawn is a masterpiece. A character study of one of the most famous and beloved adversaries in the Empire, Grand Admiral Thrawn is not driven by evil or domination. The Sherlock of the Star Wars galaxy, he is a master at military tactics and studies the culture and art of varying species in an effort to understand them. This book gives us insight into Thrawn's thought process as he ascends the imperial ranks, artfully handles core world bigotry, tangles with another tactical master and trains another outer rim outsider in his crafts. I loved watching Thrawn outwit humans who felt far superior and learned they were not. This book also featured the backstory of Lothal governor Pryce and her journey down a dark path of ruthlessness. I read this book using immersion reading, while listening to the brilliant Marc Thompson's incredible narration. His character voices are spot on and his beautiful intonations really make the story come alive. I loved Thrawn's voice. This book is another reason why he is my favorite narrator.
A must read/listen for Star Wars fans, Zahn does not disappoint. Political intrigue, action, drama and excitement await within. I took my time to savor this book and was sad to see it end. I hope we have more of the Grand Admiral's adventures both in print and on the big screen.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Paul M
  • 30-11-2017

Excellent!

Where does Thrawn (Star Wars) rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

This is one of the best Star Wars books I've read in years. The performance was excellent, and felt very Star Wars. I wish Mr Zahn had written more of these new canon books. He has been sorely missed in the Star Wars universe.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Thrawn (Star Wars)?

This is a tough one without spoilers, but I would say Thrawns big reveal about why he is in Empire space.

Have you listened to any of Marc Thompson’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Yes. I listened to him with the Aftermath books. This performance reaffirmed my belief that his performance there was a result of the poor writing we were forced to endure. His performance here was PERFECT.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Absolutely. For anyone who has read the original Zahn trilogy which are now considered to be not part of the canon, this book makes you smile in many places as ship names and the like are thrown in for our enjoyment. Many times I remember thinking "yes" as something was introduced that was a throwback to that original series. Way to go Mr Zahn.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • justin
  • 11-04-2017

Thrawn has survived the purge of the cannon

5 hours in and Thrawn seems to have survived the cannon purge wonderfully he is still Thrawn and this story reinstates alot of thrawns back story that had evolved other the course of Zahns other novels

36 of 49 people found this review helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 20-06-2017

awesome

Marc Thompson's narration was incredible! A must listen!! Timothy Zahn's writing remains the best! Thrawn

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Roger Glenn Duncan
  • 23-04-2017

Somewhat disappointing

While not bad, per se, unfortunately this fell far short of my expectations. The Thrawn character here doesn't compare to his excellent arc in the 'Heir to the Empire' trilogy.

19 of 26 people found this review helpful

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  • BeantownDutch
  • 12-04-2017

A Zahn Book - Expertly voiced

This is what I was looking for in a Timothy Zahn Book. I've missed his thrawn. I also want to be first to say the voice actor is perfect, even if Eli is clearly George W. Bush.

18 of 25 people found this review helpful

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  • Paul
  • 09-08-2018

This brought me back

I really enjoyed the book and this excellent audio book. It brought me back into the Star Wars fold and get me reading the various adventures again and exploring the newer tales and spin offs

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • tiffer
  • 07-08-2018

Great story with lots of twists

Great story with lots of twists I am looking forward to the next one, will download tomorrow

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Anu
  • 28-07-2018

Great

Wonderful to have a full book focusing on thrawn as a character and not just adversary. Timothy Zann really does him justice as he did in the now legends series. It is set just after the clone wars and really goes into the expanded universe wouldn't recommend to anyone just getting into the many star wars novels but you enjoyed plasma you will love this.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 10-02-2019

Brilliant! Simply brilliant

The voice acting was excellent and rhe sound effects while being subtle enough to not be distracting, added a lot!

Chapters not too long, just right for my daily car ride.

Going to the sequal now.

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  • James
  • 29-01-2019

Great story but...

The only downside was the voicing of female characters... they sounded like some very bad drag acts. However the other characters were largely brilliant.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 29-01-2019

Great performance and story

Great story and well presented, voice and music done very well.

Gave a great description of areas not usually included in star wars such as civilian life.

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  • Miss
  • 24-01-2019

Enjoyable story, but

Why all the background buzz!? I can see the sound effects relevant to the story working well - lasers, ships in flight - but a lot of the ‘on bridge’ scenes have a background hubbub that is very distracting, especially when listening in the car. I even thought it was a strange noise my car was making when I first heard it!

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  • Christopher
  • 20-01-2019

Best Star Wars Nobel to date, canon or legends

An extremely well told story, with an excellent narrator.
Loved every minute of it.

As always, the sound effects and music used in a Star Wars audiobook make it a compelling and exciting journey, and stands out amongst other audiobooks.
The voice for Thrawn himself matched the Rebels cartoon series actor perfectly, and most other voices have unique and well charactered portrayals to the cast (there’s always a few exceptions to that of course, some women and Vader for example. The alien voice for one chapter was extremely grating however).

The cast themselves were varied and each have their own outlook and impact on the larger story. The book is almost about Eli as much as it is Thrawn, and Eli’s experiences and discomfort with some Imperial actions and attitudes gives well earned pathos to the franchise that the films themselves somewhat lack. It isn’t entirely black/white or good/evil, there is grey in there somewhere and certain people in the Empire weren’t entirely happy with the outcomes.

Overall, a must for anyone who enjoys the wider Star Wars universe.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 15-01-2019

gripping the show way through!

The sound effects and voice acting made it feel like I was watching a flim!

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  • S Jones
  • 13-01-2019

Star Wows

This is a must for any Star Wars fan. The focus on the empire is great and seeing a slightly different side than what we normally see, whilst still maintaining nods to the way on which the Empire works.

only annoying bit is some of the voices used for the alien races... at one point I thought my speaker was broken.