The Shadows of the Empire audiobook is an abridged audio reading of the Shadows of the Empire novel originally published by author Steve Perry, performed by actor Anthony Heald. The audiobook was originally published by Bantam Doubleday Dell Audio Publishing in 1996 as part of the larger Star Wars: Shadows of the Empire multimedia project.

The Shadows of the Empire audiobook features Xizor's Theme from the Shadows of the Empire soundtrack, originally composed by Joel McNeely, and original sound effects, some of which were reproduced from the three Star Wars films of the Original trilogy.

Originally released on two audio cassettes, the audiobook's running time is 180 minutes.

Publisher's summary[]

It is a time of crisis. Han Solo, frozen in carbonite, is being taken to the vile gangster Jabba the Hutt. As Princess Leia mounts a rescue mission and Darth Vader scours the galaxy for Luke Skywalker, another sinister figure emerges. Cunning and ruthless, leader of a powerful crime syndicate, he will pit himself against Vader for the favor of their mutual master… the dreaded Emperor.


His name is Xizor, Underlord of a galaxywide criminal organization, and he seeks to displace Darth Vader as the Emperor's right hand. To do so, he will hatch a brilliantly evil plan to discredit Vader in the Emperor's eyes. In the meantime, he will join the Dark Lord in an unholy alliance whose common target is Luke.

Though he is cold and reptilian, Xizor has a certain predatory charisma that not even Leia can totally resist. Against the judgment of Chewbacca, who has promised the frozen Han to keep her from harm, Leia walks willingly into Xizor's lair in a dangerous play of passion and willpower to get the information she needs to defeat him.

And as the struggle between Xizor and Vader intensifies, Luke finds himself the potential prize of the two most evil entities in the galaxy—one who wants him alive, and one who wants him dead.

Featuring original Star Wars music, the specially composed Xizor's Theme, and sound effects, this exclusive Star Wars production adds an exciting new chapter to the Star Wars saga, and introduces important new characters no Star Wars fan will want to miss!


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