This book is easily in the top five of all Star Wars books ever written. It's almost-if not as good as- The Thrawn Trilogy by Timothy Zahn. It moves at such a pace that you can't help but be blown away by everything that unfolds before you.
The book unfolds, and is layered masterfully, as the plot thickens, gathers pace and comes together effortlessly. You're never left feeling disappointed.
The characters are exactly as they should be, and this book benefits from having a whole host of them in starring roles, including: Yoda, Mace Windu, Palpatine, Amidala, Bail Organa, General Greivous, Count Dooku and of Course Anakin and Obi-Wan.
Real depth is given to the character of Anakin and we come to appreciate the anguish he feels. We get to see just how much he feels let down by the council, just how much he fears for Padme's life; and crucially just how easily Palpatine can manipulate him. It's brilliant because we can see exactly where his downfalls occur and all his flaws are laid out to see.
The relationship between him and Obi-Wan is brilliantly crafted and adds further to Lucas's interpretation of it. The banter is excellent, the understanding is there too.....but Anakin can never really be honest with Obi-Wan and it obviously pains him. Their relationship changes from Father and Son, to brothers to Uncle and Nephew. It really is very well done by Luceno.
The pace of the book, as mentioned earlier, is brilliant. From exhilirating snow-speeder chases to battles in Neimodian palaces to an epic series of clashes on Coruscant, the book will leave you wanting much more. But don't go on to read Dark Lord: The Rise of Darth Vader. That's just rubbish.