This book will serve to build a structure surrounding episode 1 that will give the listener new nuance and perspective. So many things that are not properly explained will suddenly make sense.
This novel is among my top 3 Star Wars stories. I've always admired the character of Palpatine because of his masterful execution of his plan and learning how he came to be a Sith as well as his master. This is a must read for any fan of the franchise.