Darth Plagueis, by James Luceno, tells the story of Emperor Palpatine's Sith master and his rise to power. It also details Palpatine's own initiation into the Sith rule-of-two and his own rise to power. We also briefly meet Darth Tenebrous, Plagueis' own master.
Plagueis, a prominent member of the Muun banking clan under his alter ego Hego Damask (which sounds like a character name Isaac Asimov would use). As Damask, Plagueis manipulates anyone and everyone in order to move the galaxy towards being ruled by the Sith and the extermination of the Jedi Order.
Plagueis takes on a young Naboo politician-in-training and eventually lures him into becoming a Sith Lord. As Palpatine executes more and more missions for him, Plagueis becomes almost a recluse. He spends his time in a secret laboratory with a medical droid experimenting on different force-sensitive creatures trying to learn how manipulate midi-chlorians to bring back the dead, extend life indefinitely, or even to create life.
This was an fun book. Taking us from more than 60 years before the events of Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace all the way through to the events at the end of that movie. I've seen several reviews that mention there are a bunch of references to other Star Wars Extended Universe stuff but, even though I've read most of the novels, I didn't catch any on my first read through it. So if this is your first Star Wars book and you read it because Chancellor Palpatine mentioned Darth Plagueis the Wise in Revenge of the Sith, you won't be lost by all the references.
It's interesting to see all the back-room wheeling and dealing going on between Plagueis and people and groups on both sides of galactic events. Most of the time he doesn't even need the Force do make them do what he wants. In addition, it's nice to see the Sith side of the events of the first prequel movie, and their maneuverings of the Jedi into a role that will lead to Order 66 in the third prequel movie.
Darth Plagueis was a quick read, as most Star Wars novels. If the Sith and their rise to power in the current era interests you, definitely grab this one.
My copy of Darth Plagueis came from my local library. No one sent me a copy for review. /sadface