UPDATE! ‘Star Wars: The High Republic – Mission to Disaster’ Gets Delayed; First Chapter Released

Like the Death Star, someone stole and changed the High Republic plans! Author Justina Ireland took to Twitter to inform that her The High Republic: Mission to Disaster novel has been pushed back a month, from January 4th to February 1st. This means Claudia Gray’s The Fallen Star will now be the only book releasing on the 4th, a strategy different from the first two High Republic waves this year. In both cases, the adult and junior novels arrived on the same day. With the move, Mission to Disaster will now release simultaneously with the young adult novel of the wave, Daniel José Older’s Midnight Horizon.



No comment on whether the switch is due to production issues or simply to put more focus on The Fallen Star. It could also just mean that this story works better to read after the aforementioned book and the few comic issues set to come in January. No matter the reason, one month is not the biggest deal in the grand scheme of things. There is some good news though. Nerdist released the entire first chapter of the book along with some quotes from Ireland.


The premise of the book is Jedi Knight Vernestra Rwoh and her Padawan Imri Cantaros must go on a mission to save their friend Avon Starros, who was a side character in Ireland’s A Test of Courage. The Nihil kidnapped Avon after an attack on Port Haileap, and it’s up to our pair of Jedi to save the day. The previous two books featuring Vern and Imri have left them at a precarious point. We’ve already seen Imri being tested by the dark side and Vern struggle with a lot of things, including her own self doubt as a Jedi and teacher. Ireland talked about Vernestra’s growth saying:


“I think we’re all a work in progress until we aren’t (death!), and Vernestra is no different. The more time she spends with others the more she learns about herself and the harder she works to be a better Jedi, and I really think that’s something awesome….All of these Jedi are still striving to reach an ideal that maybe falls a little beyond their current abilities, but instead of saying ‘LOL…whatever’ they work harder, self-reflect and change tactics. They do all of the things we should want our heroes to do. Vernestra is no different. Her missteps are learning opportunities, and she is a much better Jedi now than when we met her in A Test of Courage.”


It sounds like we’re going to see Vernestra truly come into her own this time around. Or maybe this kid’s book will follow in the footsteps of the other High Republic authors who have been teasing a dark finale to phase 1, and it will all come crumbling down.


The High Republic: Mission to Disaster


Here’s a piece of the first chapter:


Avon Starros did not bounce. The only daughter of Senator Ghirra Starros and youngest member of the illustrious Starros Clan of Hosnian Prime did not jump for joy or leap in excitement. She was, in a word, a scientist.

But Avon found herself bouncing down the hallway all the same.

“Really? Today? I can finally try synthesizing a Starros crystal today?” Avon said, following her mentor, Professor Glenna Kip, toward the lab in Port Haileap. The outpost wasn’t much more than a rest stop for the ships going to and returning from the farthest edges of the galaxy, but it was also home to the research lab of Professor Kip, a well-known scientist.

“Yes, today,” Professor Kip said, a smile splitting the silver-lined green of her face. “You can prepare your samples, and we’ll get to it after the midday meal.”

“Yes! Thank you, Professor Kip. I’m going to go get everything ready now, and I’ll see you after lunch.”

Avon hustled down the hallway toward the lab. After months spent memorizing the basic structure of kyber crystal molecules, analyzing the atoms, and testing energy refraction and the like, Avon was finally about to do the one thing she had wanted to do from the first moment she had stolen Padawan Imri Cantaros’s broken lightsaber: make a reproduction of a kyber crystal.

The construction of the lightsaber seemed relatively straightforward, and Avon couldn’t help wondering if it was possible that maybe the kyber crystals could be used for different applications. After all, she had no use for a laser sword—she was a scientist, not a Jedi—but it would be nice if perhaps there was some way to use a kyber’s focusing abilities to harness the ambient energy of space.

With so much random radiation and the like just floating around, could they somehow duplicate the kyber’s structure to direct that energy to power entire planets?

Avon thought so, even if no one else did.

It had taken months to convince her mentor that a project such as a simulated kyber crystal could be useful and worthwhile, and although Professor Kip had tried over and over again to get Avon to turn her attention to the natural sciences, such as the crop yield project she was currently pursuing, Avon didn’t really care about making plants grow faster or making herds produce more off spring. She wanted to understand power, and how things like tibanna could be stretched further and more efficiently, or even replaced altogether. After all, the galaxy was expanding, and fuel would be necessary to keep supplies running to the frontier. Avon knew that because it was something her mother talked about regularly on their weekly calls.

So, after months of diagramming the crystal’s structure, making copious notes, and gathering all the relevant research available on kyber—most of it requested from the Jedi Temple on Coruscant with the help of Professor Kip—Avon was finally ready to test out her theory.

Professor Kip would not return for another hour or so, but once Avon got to the lab, she very quickly prepared it for her experiment. The kyber was nestled in its holder, and the Lonnigan duplicating apparatus was all set up. The only thing missing was Professor Kip. So Avon began skip-ping circles in the lab, waiting for her mentor to return.

Skipping was not bouncing, but it was very close.

Avon checked the time once more. Her stomach grumbled at her, and she was half considering going to grab some lunch from the noodle cart.

That was when the explosions started.

Avon ran to the door of the lab and opened it, peeking out into the rest of the Port Haileap complex. The Jedi and every Republic official lived in the compound, and there were a few rooms for transient guests, as well. But there was no good reason for any of the noise that Avon heard.

The sounds of blaster fire and far-off  explosions were growing louder, with shouting and screaming providing a background to the echoes of battle. A young Togruta ran toward Avon, the other girl’s striped head tails swinging as she moved. “Talia! What’s going on?” Avon yelled. Talia was another student of Professor Kip’s, though her interests tended more toward the plants and natural sciences that Professor Kip preferred.

“It’s the Nihil! They’re attacking Port Haileap.”


You can check out the full opening chapter and interview with Ireland on Nerdist, and then pre-order the book here. If you need more High Republic, The Fallen Star released its first excerpt earlier this week.




Lucasfilm Publishing creative director Michael Siglain has tweeted out that Mission to Disaster has now been pushed back to March 1 due to printing delays.



Supply chain issues have been plaguing every corner of the market globally, and books are no different. There is currently a paper shortage affecting book production for both reprints and new releases. Not to mention that the High Republic junior novels have been splashed with color on just about every single page, so anyone with bad experiences of trying to print in color can probably relate to Lucasfilm Publishing’s issues right now.


Siglain added in a reply to his tweet that the delay applies to every version of the book, audio included. Fingers crossed there are no other delays hitting Mission to Disaster or any Star Wars book coming next year.


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Nate uses his love for Star Wars and movies in general as a way to cope with the pain of being a Minnesota sports fan. When he's not at the theater, you can usually find Nate reading a comic, listening to an audiobook, or playing a Mario video game for the 1,000th time.

Nate Manning

Nate uses his love for Star Wars and movies in general as a way to cope with the pain of being a Minnesota sports fan. When he's not at the theater, you can usually find Nate reading a comic, listening to an audiobook, or playing a Mario video game for the 1,000th time.