I only read one book from the liberary and while i admit they are aswomely written from what i hear of the extended unverse anything post return of the jedi has bin over the top to put it midly.
The new republic fall's 3 times and there is more war and suffering post return of the jedi then in the entire time the galatic empire ruled.
I honestly think they are out of idea's and trying to make so last ditch cash.
Never mind you could simple jump to the present(after all this all happend long ago:P)
or the future for that mather.
personal i refuse to accept the extented universe as cannon.
I think you're right, to and extent. Shelley Shapiro's statements tend to be more about how to "market" the Star Wars brand (cancelling some series so they can promote prequel novels) and to move it forward. From what I've seen, authors are hired to write a story that has a predefined course of action, and while they do have creative input...there is an overal 'plan.'
I don't like this.
the format of Trilogys that Bantam had is much better from a story telling point of view. BTW, you're safe for the EU through the New Republic era...once you get into the NJO you'll have to be on anti-depressants to get through it.