The Naboo Queen strikes back in an all-new YA novel by E.K. Johnston, Queen’s Peril. Releasing May 2020, Queen’s Peril will entail a new storyline that encompasses the events before Queen’s Shadow. Covers by Tara Phillips highlight Queen Amidala’s sense of royalty and duty to protecting her home planet of Naboo.
Unfortunately, E.K. Johnston is trying not to reveal too much in the way of story, and for a very good reason. However, Johnston was gracious enough to share a few tidbits about the Queen in an exclusive interview with StarWars.com.
StarWars.com: There was a lot of excitement around Queen’s Shadow, especially from fans of the handmaidens and Padmé who feel like these characters have been underserved. What did that mean to you?
E.K. Johnston: The excitement and reception were absolutely amazing. I will never forget turning my phone back on when I landed in Chicago for Celebration and getting texts about the bookstore being sold out…and that was a month and a half after it had been released! It was everything I could have hoped for.
StarWars.com: You’re returning to Padmé with Queen’s Peril. What can you tell us about the book?
E.K. Johnston: I AM SO EXCITED. Broadly put, this was the first Star Wars book I ever pitched, way back in 2014. We had to update it a bit since, you know, there’s a been a bit of Star Wars since then. It’s Padmé. It’s the first round of handmaidens. It’s Naboo. And a lot of it is giving Quarsh Panaka gray hair. Also, the Trade Federation is probably going to show up and cause problems.
StarWars.com: Did the reaction to Queen’s Shadow impact the writing ofQueen’s Peril?
E.K. Johnston: Sort of? I had a pretty good idea of what I wanted to do, but hearing readers be excited about all the dresses and other elements that I loved gave me more space to play going back in.
StarWars.com: What are you most excited about with Queen’s Peril that you might not have had the opportunity to cover in Queen’s Shadow?
E.K. Johnston: Okay, so the whole “I would have sent them to a Backstreet Boys concert” thing started as a half-joke panel answer, but…I got to send them to a Backstreetish Boysish concert. Also, I got to write the Original Six, as it were. I love Cordé and Versé and Dormé, but this was like sitting down with very old friends.
StarWars.com: The Phantom Menace celebrated its 20th anniversary this year, and the movie and its characters, including Padmé, seem more popular than ever. What’s your take on that?
E.K. Johnston: It makes me so happy. The prequels are how I found my way back to Star Wars, and the source of most of my fannish relationships, and being able to talk about them so openly is pretty great.”
For further updates regarding Queen’s Peril, make sure to check back here! Queen’s Peril is available now for pre-order.
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