Marvel Star Wars: Skywalker Strikes, by Jason Aaron ISBN 9780785192138
Five out of five stars
This temporal placement of this story is after the destruction of the first Death Star, but before “The Empire Strikes Back.” The major point of plot significance is that the action takes place before Darth Vader is aware that it was the son of Skywalker that fired the shots that blew up the ultimate weapon.
Leia, Han, Luke and Chewbacca are leading a raid on one of the main weapons depots of the Empire. Their cover is that they are there to conduct bargaining sessions in the name of Jabba the Hut. The mission becomes problematic when Darth Vader himself arrives and Luke is forced to face him in a very unequal combat. At this time, Vader only knows him as the rebel pilot that destroyed the Death Star and that the force is strong in him, albeit uncontrolled. The ending is a very powerful one, in a powerful scene featuring only an unsettled Darth Vader.
There is another great scene where Darth Vader and Jabba the Hut are engaged in a conversation over the hiring of bounty hunters. Vader has learned that Ben Kenobi spent years on Tatooine and is trying to gather additional information via Jabba.
This is a real page-turner of an adventure, far superior to some of the movies that have been made after episode IV. Plenty of action with an emphasis on Darth Vader, his power, goals and what will eventually be his weakness.