Delilah S. Dawson’s The Perfect Weapon is an e-novella starring blink-and-you’ll-miss-her Bazine Netal from The Force Awakens. You’ll remember Bazine as the Harley Quinn-esque bounty hunter who made the call to the First Order on seeing Han Solo & co arriving at Maz Kanata’s bar. And while her screen time was limited, it was enough to make this a character fans wanted to see more of.
The Perfect Weapon fills in the blanks with this enigmatic character, sending her on a mission requiring her to revisit the ghosts of her past. In many ways, Bazine mirrors those Harley Quinn tropes, a deadly assassin with more empathy than you’d expect, but Dawson also does a great job creating a fully-rounded character in her own right as opposed to just “the best bits” from other franchises. The story is fun, a modern noir combining the smoky jazz feel of Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner and the mischief of Christa Faust’s Angel Dare series for Hard Case Crime, the seedy outer rim our playground for the most part. And the writing is excellent – sharp, witty and engaging making for a super-fast and rewarding read.
The Perfect Weapon succeeds brilliantly in developing the character of Bazine Netal, hopefully in preparation for her appearance in future movies. I could see her becoming the new Boba Fett of the franchise, playing more of a pivotal role as the story of Rey & co progresses. Either way, if this is anything to go by, further Bazine novels/ novellas would be very welcome.