By : Valeda Kor
It's a breath of fresh air to read of small incidents in the life of Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan; no foreshadowing of events in The Phantom Menace, no sadness, no pain. Okay, a little pain in "Friends Like These," but Jane Jinn handles it all very satisfyingly.
Our heroes are trying to get a very unpleasant Sullastan senator off his planet with some incriminating information intact. Of course, the people this information is all about want to prevent this at all costs. Obi-Wan Kenobi is sent on a mission of retrieval, and he bears the brunt of their attempts to stop the senator from telling what he knows.
Senator Yirrit is an irritating creature, all bluster in his usual persona, and then a helpful nuisance where Obi-Wan is concerned. Jane Jinn has him proving that he's not all bad, adding a level to the character that keeps him from being one-dimensional.
Qui-Gon Jinn is his usual Jedi Master self, able to do a little Jedi
lecturing to his young Padawan, then supporting him when it becomes
necessary. There are no surprises in the author's characterization, but that is as it should be. "With Friends Like These" conveys a theme of responsibility and accountability throughout, using Qui-Gon as a vessel to impart true and tried elements of morality that are as viable in our universe as in the Galaxy Far, Far Away.
And the ending, with its humorous aspects is very entertaining. It's hard to pull off a story that has dramatic elements intertwined with a sense of humor, but Jane Jinn pulls it off to perfection. Highly recommended.