Wow, look at that! A two-fer! Today was the release of the new Star Wars novel: Aftermath. Alongside its release, there has been news that the book has a gay hero as one of the leads. It doesn't stop there. We have a few more LGBT characters in it too!
In the new novel Star Wars: Aftermath, author Chuck Wendig takes another step forward for diversity, introducing a major gay character to the mix: the Imperial turncoat Sinjir Rath Velus.
He's not the first gay character to turn up in the new canon. That distinction belongs to last April's Lords of the Sith novel by Paul S. Kemp, which introduced fans to Moff Delian Mors, a lesbian Imperial officer who feels adrift after her wife is killed in an accident. But Sinjir Rath Velus holds the distinction of being the first major hero in a Star Wars story to come from an LGBT background.
Sinjir is an AWOL Imperial loyalty officer who now finds himself siding with the forces of the Rebellion after witnessing the horror of battle on Endor. There's also the question of what life is like for gay men and women in the Empire. There's something seemingly ... intolerant about that bunch. (Wendig, who is signed on to write two more books in the Aftermath trilogy, says that's a topic he intends to delve into further in the future.)
There are also two background characters who are gay: the Rebel fighter Norra Wexley, one of the main characters in Aftermath, has an older sister named Esmelle, who agrees that she and her wife, Shirene, will watch over Norra's son while she is off fighting.
It's a pretty big step for the canon, right? But of course, this wouldn't be all peachy if 2 Steps Back is involved!
Greg: Um... so, news for you LGBT readers out there, your sexuality is a political statement!