This is the Star Wars novel I have been waiting for! I hope it answers a lot of questions.
Penned by James Luceno, my personal favorite Star Wars author (Labrynth of Evil, his best SW book up until now).
I have not bought The Tragedy of Darth Plagueis yet. So I will not return to this thread until I pick it up (in less than an hour from the time I'm starting this thread) until I've read into the novel.
I may post my thoughts as I progress, before I finish the whole book -so sorry if I skip your posts so that I'm not spoiled by them myself, until I complete the book.
But this is a civil way of letting all record their first impressions of every profound reveal as it happens.
Then when you're DONE reading the entire book, go back and delve into what others are saying beyond this first post.
THE FOLLOWING IS SPECULATION, I'd like to see confirmed by the book. I may be wrong. I HOPE for the following:
1. The Sith's plan from Plagueis on was to take over the Republic from within.
2. Plagueis was a Muun (like San Hill) and knew an alien might not be elected, thus chose Sidious as his apprentice.
3. As a Sith alchemist, Sidiuos created Anakin - possibly using Palpatine's human DNA! Yup. Maybe they're related.
4. Obviously, Plageuis experimented on Shmi. He might have been a doctor in public life who said he was helping Shmi.
5. Darth Plagueis will have a real name, like Dr. Sonjay Gupta or something, just like Sidious is Palpatine.
6. Sith are supposed to kill their masters. Palpatine recruits Dooku for this. Ambushes and sends into exile, Anakin.
7. Palpatine kills Plagueis and takes over. Dooku is his apprentice.
8. To keep the Sith's ties secret, maybe even before Plagueis' death, Palpatine recruits Darth Maul and tattoos him Sith.
9. Darth Maul is only like Ventress - a wannabe, not as powerful as the Masters who weild Force lightning, etc.
10. Also, as a tattoo'd alien freak, there is no danger of Darth Maul running an Empire -the public won't accept Maul.
11. Palpatine is safe from being assasinated by Maul because he's weaker, not fully trained, and not a public figure.
12. In that Apprentice vs. Master game, Dooku gets the Separatist Army, Palpatine, the Clone Army
13. With Maul eliminated and Anakin resurfaced, Sidious plans to use Anakin (Vader) to kill Dooku (Tyranus)
14. Upon the verge of the birth of the Empire, these events happen in ROTS
15. Were Anakin not forced into a scary war-droid life-support system, as a war hero, he could lead the new Empire
16. The Empire would have an heir-apparent in its Sith Legacy with Darth Vader, publically Anakin Skywalker
17. Obi-Wan Kenobi comes along and screws up those grand plans....
Anyway, that's how I'd write it!
In a short while, I'm going to pick up this book and find out what Luceno did. He's good. I've got some pretty high expectations.
Below this post will be SPOILERS from any and all, including myself.
You've been WARNED!
My recommendation is to post without reading the rest of the posts until you've completed the book. Then no one is censored and no one is spoiled.