Book Reviews: The Jedi Path and The Book of The Sith (Daniel Wallace)

Book Reviews: The Jedi Path and The Book of The Sith (Daniel Wallace)

Star Wars: The Jedi Path and The Book of the Sith Deluxe Edition by Daniel Wallace

May the Fourth Be With You! (or Star Wars Day) continues here on The Beer Thrillers with our second post of the day, and our second Star Wars themed post. Earlier in the day we uploaded our beer review of “The Mangalorian” by Brewery Fire. You can check that out here: Beer Review: The Mangalorian (Brewery Fire). You can also see last year’s May the Fourth Be With You (2020) article here: May The Fourth Be With You!

Not too surprising here on The Beer Thrillers, some of our more popular blog articles are Star Wars themed articles. Some of our most viewed articles are Beer Review: Java the Stout (Jackie O’s Brewery), Beer Review: Out of Order: Blue Milk (RAR Brewing), and Beer Review: This is the Way (Broken Goblet Brewing Company).

I found this deluxe edition relatively cheap at 2nd and Charles in Harrisburg – at the Harrisburg East Mall. For only 15$ in store, with the original price being something like 50$. Score.


When discussing anything Star Wars, one of the first steps is to visiting the Wookiepedia. It is the Star Wars equivalent of the Wikipedia, and honestly, might be more in depth and more accurate than the actual Wikipedia. (Scary as that may be.) The Wookiepedia is the definitive source for anything (and everything) in Star Wars lore, its ran by the most devoted fans and aficionados, and covers both the new Disney Canon as well as the old Expanded Universe or Legends or EU.

So, using the Wookiepedia, let’s look at a quick synopsis of the deluxe set:

Star Wars: The Jedi Path and Book of Sith Deluxe Box Set is a hardcover boxed set from Chronicle Books that collects The Jedi Path: A Manual for Students of the Force and Book of Sith: Secrets from the Dark Side, both written by Daniel Wallace. Exclusive to this set are two specially commissioned artwork prints by Gustavo Mendonca and Derek Thompson. The set was published on August 12, 2014.

Publisher’s Summary: This box set brings the light and dark sides of the Force together for the first time. The Jedi Path is the ancient training manual that has educated and enlightened generations of Jedi, including Yoda, Qui-Gon Jinn, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Luke Skywalker. They have handwritten their comments into this text, the only remaining copy in existence. Book of Sith is a compilation of six legendary dark texts gathered and bound together by Darth Sidious, and featuring comments from Darth Vader, Mace Windu, Darth Maul, and others. This deluxe edition contains an exclusive portfolio with two prints, each depicting a prominent figure from either side of the Force. With these two titles, students of the Force can study and more fully understand the complex powers of good and evil.

The Jedi Path and Book of the Sith Deluxe Set – Wookiepedia

Legends vs. Disney EU

Legends or the old EU vs. Disney EU or Disney Universe or the NU (New Universe), is a hot topic for many (read: most or all) Star Wars fans. In 2012 Disney bought Star Wars, altering the Star Wars universe completely from that moment on. They soon after announced that the old EU (the books popularized by Timothy Zahn, Matthew Woodring Stover, Michael A. Stackpole, Aaron Allston, Karen Traviss, and many many many many others) would be reduced or changed or eliminated to what they called “legends” status. Moving forward, the new canon would start with just the six movies (the original trilogy and the prequel trilogy) as well as the second Clone Wars show and movie that started it (not the little five minute Cartoon Network clippings, but the full show). Since then, they added that the books, the sequel trilogy, and other shows (Rebels, The Mandalorian), etc, etc, etc, would all be part of a new canon and be on par with each other. (Ie. A movie can’t contradict a book, etc.)

So I find this book a bit interesting. Its written using the old Expanded Universe and written in a non-fictional way, but set in the universe of the old Expanded Universe, but its release date is 2014; which puts it two years after the Disney buy-out.

The Jedi Path

This deluxe set has two books in one, the first book is The Jedi Path and the second book is the Book of Sith Secrets. I’ll start with The Jedi Path. The Jedi Path is primarily an instructional handbook for a new padawan working his way up through the ranks of the Jedi. It’s got margins with notes by people such as Yoda, Qui-Gon Jinn, Ahsoka, and even Luke late (post New Jedi Order).

The book goes into all the different facets of Jedi culture. How padawans are selected, how there is different sects and groups, how those who fail their Jedi tests are placed in the AgriCorps and other such groups. It goes into the different force abilities and powers. How Lightsabers are created. Holocrons and other Jedi related instruments and devices. It goes into the different fighting stances and their names. Jedi ships and vehicles. Pretty much all the minutia of the Jedi culture.

It does break down the Jedi philosophy…. …but only slightly, and only surface deep. Which is a bit disappointing. As this is something I’d like to have seen explored much more. Now, granted, these two books are aimed for Middle School or near – abouts aged children, I can understand some of that. So the philosophy is rudimentary and cursory but it at least provides a springboard for interested children. You do get the idea of how Hindu and Buddhist cultures influence Lucas’s idea of the Jedi, and how this has changed, morphed, and warped with the many numerous authors and other people who have worked the Star Wars brand.

This is an ok read, nothing that seems exceptional, and nothing that is ‘required reading’, and any massive Star Wars nerd will already know or nearly know all of the information provided.

Book of the Sith

I found the Book of the Sith to be a lot more interesting. Probably speaks to my darker aspects of my soul and spirit and mentality huh? I dunno, then again, I was always into Chaos for Warhammer 40K…. so who knows. Big shrug. I just find the Sith much more interesting when you get to pick them apart (unless their boring plain mustache twirling villains), and less hypocritical than the Jedi. Which, the hypocritical portion should make the Jedi more interesting, but they never delve into it, and the Jedi are never given too much introspection to make them that interesting; whereas the Sith seem to live in introspection.

Just like The Jedi Path; Book of the Sith dives into all the minutia of the Sith history. Which is a bit more complicated and interesting. Its fractured and broken, with sects and groups, and dynamic changes (like when Darth Bane rises and changes the lineage to the Rule of Two).

So there is a lot more going on with this book than the Jedi book. The margins has inscriptions from Palpatine / Darth Sidious, Darth Vader, and Asajj Ventress. Sidious is the most used and the most interesting for the margins notes.

Where as the Jedi is more of a metaphysical statement of the Force, the Sith are more of a magical element to them. They employ talismans, spells, they make use of things – like blood, items, etc, where as the Jedi sometimes just use their minds or small hand gestures. For these reasons also, I always found the Sith to be more rich, and interesting, an fascinating, especially in the grander scheme and mythos of Star Wars. Backstory on Plagueis, Sidious, Tenebrious, Bane are all far more interesting to me than the backstory of Yoda or Mace Windu. Likewise, greyer characters like Asajj, Dooku, Qui-Gon, Quinlan Vos are also far more interesting than the Jedi Councer members (Plo Koon, Depa Bilapa, Yaddle, Yareal Poof, etc.).

Conclusion and Ratings

Both books are interesting, but fall in a weird market area. Right now, their not canon anymore due to being Legends based. They are also designed for those who either 1) don’t know much about Jedi or Sith and thus want to learn more, or 2) the completists who want to know EVERYTHING… but already know 98% of this book. It is interesting, and there is stuff to learn and glean from, and its written very well. I enjoyed it for what it is, and you can’t have much more expectations than that when it comes to Star Wars anyway.


The Jedi Path:
My GoodReads Rating: ***
My LibraryThing Rating: ***
Global GoodReads Rating: 4.35 (as of 5.4.21)

The Book of the Sith:
My GoodReads Rating: ***
My LibraryThing Rating: ***.5
Global GoodReads Rating: 4.10 (as of 5.4.21)

Thank you all for reading. Hopefully you had a wonderful May the 4th Be With You or Star Wars Day. Tomorrow is Cinco de Mayo, so rest your livers up and enjoy. Be safe and go out and get that vaccination so we can get closer and closer to normalcy!


-B. Kline

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