Life Debt, the second book in the Aftermath trilogy by Chuck Wendig, features a cameo by Maz Kanata.
Maz Kanata was introduced in The Force Awakens as an ancient being, much like Master Yoda, whom everyone knew and whose castle was a haven for any and all creatures, be you a pirate, ne’er do well, or a spy for one of the many powers in the galaxy.
In Life Debt, the second book in Chuck Wendig’s Aftermath trilogy, an interlude between the chapters of the main story introduces Maz Kanata’s one rule for her castle: “ALL ARE WELCOME. (NO FIGHTING.)”
USA Today broke the exclusive excerpt from the book, which comes out in hardcover Tuesday, July 12th, revealing Maz’s small role in the novel. It’s a minor one, one of many interludes which give the reader a glimpse at what’s going on in the rest of the galaxy away from the conflict between the New Republic and the Empire.
Author Wendig spoke about wanting to explore another taste of Maz’s rich history.
"“Maz Kanata’s clearly seen much and done more than many ever will in the galaxy and that’s so tantalizing,” Wendig says. “I wanted the chance to tell just a little bit of that — to reveal a few more micrometers of Maz and her castle’s history.”"
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Those micrometers are about to be disturbed in Life Debt, when someone decides he’s going to break the one unbreakable rule of NO FIGHTING. According to the excerpt, “You fight? You’re done here.” It seems a pointless statute to have in a place where so many beings of questionable backgrounds and criminal histories gather together, but also a necessary one. We’ve already seen what happens when roughnecks brush shoulders in places like The Cantina on Tatooine, where bar fights are a common feature of your visit. Maz Kanata proved herself a more empathetic soul, but I’d hate to see what happens when you break her one rule.
We’ll have to wait for the release of Life Debt to find out. In the meantime, read the excerpt which sets up the scenario.
"There’s only one rule in Maz Kanata’s castle.(Well, okay, there are dozens, even hundreds of rules. If you get up on stage, you have to perform; don’t drink what’s in the brown jug; don’t go downstairs; if your animal drops a pile anywhere, you’re out; all deals need the approval of Maz before they’re done, and if you try to go around her back she’ll take what’s yours and what’s his and sell all of it to the highest bidder; and for the love of all that is holy don’t mention Maz’s eyes unless you want to get into a very long conversation.)But there’s only one spoken rule — written, too, in a hundred languages (many of them long-forgotten) on the wall beyond the bar: ALL ARE WELCOME. (NO FIGHTING.)That rule is simple on the surface, but not easy in the execution, because Maz Kanata’s castle has been a meeting place since time immemorial — a nexus point drawing together countless lines of allegiance and opposition, a place not only where friend and foe can meet, but where complex conflicts are worn down flat so that all may sit, have a drink and a meal, listen to a song, and broker whatever deals their hearts or politics require. That’s why the flags outside her castle represent hundreds of cities and civilizations and guilds from before forever. The galaxy is not now, nor has it ever been, two polar forces battling for supremacy. It has been thousands of forces: a tug-of-war not with a single rope but a spider’s web of influence, dominance, and desire. Clans and cults, tribes and families, governments and anti-governments. Queens, satraps, warlords! Diplomats, buccaneers, droids! Slicers, spicers, ramblers, and gamblers! To repeat: ALL ARE WELCOME. (NO FIGHTING.)You fight? You’re done."
Pick up Aftermath: Life Debt this Tuesday from your local bookstore or favorite online dealer.