I’m Trekkie but a powerful force compelled me to check out Star Wars: Agent of the Empire – Iron Eclipse. What drew me in was the beautiful covers by Stephane Roux. They’re reminiscent of the Star Wars movie posters, which feature the protagonists posing in the foreground and the antagonists and action looming over them in the background. There are even taglines like “Stormtroopers are the Empire’s hammer. This man is its scalpel.” That man is Jahan Cross.

Agent Cross is like James Bond, if James Bond worked for the bad guys. He has his own version of Q, who supplies him with gadgets like boot heels that double as tasers, a collapsible hang glider and best of all a female droid called IN-GA 44. Cross doesn’t just get the girl, he gets her mom too.

While dispatching a corrupt colonel, Cross uncovers a mysterious project known as Iron Eclipse. The project is headed by Rossum Droidworks, which was founded by the late Iaco Stark who made his name with a computer virus that started the Hyperspace War. Cross seduces Elli Stark, a blonde bombshell, and her stepmother Dah’Lis Stark, a green alien with hair tentacles known as a Nautolan, but when he gets too close to the family’s secret, he’s framed for the murder of Dah’Lis. Now on the run, his only allies are Elli and a couple outlaws: Han Solo and Chewbacca. Solo and Cross went to the academy but that doesn’t mean he’s going help him out of the goodness of his heart.

Cross may work for the Empire but he isn’t a villain. Through a series of flashbacks we learn that an attack by the Republic claimed the lives of his mother and sister. He joins the Empire under the belief that it is the only alternative to galactic chaos. Though that faith will be tested in the upcoming Star Wars: Agent of the Empire – Hard Targets series.

Star Wars: Agent of the Empire – Iron Eclipse TPB release: November 6, 2012
Pre-order at Amazon