Star Wars Book Review: ‘Stormtroopers: Beyond the Armor’ by Ryder Windham and Adam Bray

Official Synopsis:

Features a Foreword by John Boyega

Just in time for the next blockbuster, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, this unique and beautifully designed compendium with removable features traces one of the franchise’s most iconic characters—the stormtrooper—from initial development through all nine Star Wars movies to their many iterations in TV, comics, video games, novels, and pop-culture.

Star Wars: A New Hope, the very first installment in the beloved science-fiction series, introduced the Imperial stormtroopers—the army of the fearsome and tyrannical Galactic Empire. Charged with establishing Imperial authority and suppressing resistance, these terrifying, faceless, well-disciplined soldiers in white have become a universal symbol of oppression.

Star Wars Stormtroopers explores these striking warriors and their evolution in-depth for the first time. Ryder Windham and Adam Bray trace the roots of their creation and design, and explore how these elite troops from a galaxy far, far away have been depicted in movies, cartoons, comics, novels, and merchandising.

Filled with photographs, illustrations, story boards, and other artwork, this lavish officially licensed book comes complete with removable features, including posters, stickers, replica memorabilia and more, making it an essential keepsake for every Star Wars fan, as well as military, design, and film aficionados.

Review:

Honestly, I was never one to give too much thought to stormtroopers. Which is one reason why I wanted to read Stormtroopers: Beyond the Armor by Ryder Windham and Adam Bray. As a Star Wars fan of a certain age (ahem), I try to explore all aspects of the saga when chance arises, especially ones I never really looked into before. Much to my pleasure, Stormtroopers: Beyond the Armor examines every iteration of the iconic trooper, from Ralph McQuarrie’s original concept up to the present day, in an engaging and informative manner.

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Coffee With Kenobi’s 2017 Holiday Gift Guide

Christmastime will soon be upon us, and the hunt for that perfect gift has begun. For the second year in a row, Coffee With Kenobi is here to help! Our show hosts and bloggers have put on their elf hats, consulted Santa’s reindeer, eaten their fair share of holiday cookies and candy canes, and have come up with Star Wars gift ideas that would make Kris Kringle himself exclaim “Ho Ho Ho!”

Check out our suggestions below:

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Star Wars Book Review: ‘From a Certain Point of View’

This review of Star Wars: From a Certain Point of View contains minor spoilers.

This year we observe the 40th Anniversary of Star Wars. To mark the occasion, 43 authors were recruited to write 40 stories celebrating the first film in the saga, A New Hope. Star Wars: From a Certain Point of View is the result, and it’s a fitting homage to a film, story, and mythology beloved by fans young and old(er).

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Star Wars Book Review: ‘Phasma’ by Delilah S. Dawson

This review of Star Wars: Phasma by Delilah S. Dawson contains minor spoilers.

For those who may have been disappointed by the apparent underuse of Captain Phasma in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Star Wars: Phasma is definitely the book for you. In Phasma, author Delilah S. Dawson gives us an origin story that is unexpected but feels right. I wasn’t sure what to expect going in, but coming out it all made sense.

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Book Review: ‘Star Wars: Battlefront II: Inferno Squad’ by Christie Golden

This review of Star Wars Battlefront II: Inferno Squad contains very minor spoilers.

Star Wars Battlefront II: Inferno Squad by Christie Golden (Dark Disciple) is the latest media tie-in for the new canon. Inferno Squad is the precursor to the highly anticipated Star Wars Battlefront II video game, scheduled for release this fall. However, as with its predecessor Star Wars Battlefront: Twilight Company, Inferno Squad is something all fans can enjoy, whether they be gamers or not. It works perfectly well as a standalone novel.

As with previous releases, such as Lost Stars, Tarkin, and Rogue One: Catalyst, the events of Inferno Squad are seen primarily through Imperial eyes. For those who are enamored of the Empire, that’s a pleasing state. For those of us who are more Rebellion-minded, it presents challenges. How can you find a way to sympathize — or empathize — with the enemy? A few books into the new canon, and I’m still working that out. It does happen, though! And Inferno Squad is an excellent example of when it does.

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Book Review — Star Wars: Thrawn

This review of Star Wars: Thrawn by Timothy Zahn will contain minor spoilers.

Imagine you created an iconic character, beloved by fans everywhere. Imagine that character was then set aside as newer and more relevant characters took to the fore. Then imagine you were tapped to reintroduce that iconic character. How often does that happen? Well, it happened to Timothy Zahn as his creation, Grand Admiral Thrawn, was recovered from the Expanded Universe (Legends) and welcomed into the embrace of the new Star Wars canon.

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‘A Conversation in Blood’ – The Latest from ‘Lords of the Sith’ Author Paul S. Kemp

Paul S. Kemp, author of Lords of the Sith, has a new book scheduled for release January 24. A Conversation in Blood is the third entry in Kemp’s Egil & Nix fantasy series, and I had the pleasure of being able to read and review the book.

Here is an excerpt from my review, which can be found in full on Goodreads.

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Book Review: Art of Coloring: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

So, this was a new experience! I’ve never reviewed a coloring book before, and I don’t think I’ve actually colored since I was in grammar school. And that was many decades ago. When presented with the opportunity to review Art of Coloring: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (recommended ages 18-99), I was pretty excited. I went to the store, bought a box of Crayola crayons (64 colors, sharpener included!) and got to work.

I had forgotten how time-consuming coloring can be. I had also forgotten how soothing it can be. I understand now the recent trend toward adult coloring books. Sometimes you just need to let your mind go, focus on something a bit creative, and relax. Not to get too personal, but I received some very bad news this week. I was in a fair amount of distress, but in the time I was coloring, I felt better. Honestly!

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Book Review: The Art of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story

Up front, I love books about concept art for films. Love them! Last year, I read The Art of Star Wars: The Force Awakens and was blown away. This year, I’m happy to report I’ve had the same reaction to The Art of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. The all-encompassing beauty of the concept art, and the informative text combine for a thrilling experience perfectly in keeping with the movie itself.

The Art of Rogue One is written by Josh Kushins, and features forewords by concept artists Doug Chiang and Neil Lamont, and by Rogue One’s director, Gareth Edwards. These are folks with a clear love for Star Wars that goes back to their earliest days, and that fact shines through in this book. As a Star Wars fan from way back myself, I’m appreciative. Fans sharing their exceptional work with other fans elevates the whole Star Wars experience.

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Book Review: Star Wars Rogue One: Rebel Dossier

If you’re anything like me, the first thing you want to do after you’ve seen an amazing movie is immerse yourself in that world. Watch everything, read everything, devour everything. I go through that cycle with each new Star Wars film, and with Rogue One it’s no different. I love the movie, so I want to soak in all there is to know. The best way to do that is to read! Fortunately, there’s no shortage of Star Wars related books.

One of the tie-ins to Rogue One is Star Wars Rogue One: Rebel Dossier by Jason Fry. While intended for a younger audience (ages 9-12), Rebel Dossier can be appreciated by any Star Wars fan of any age. It’s a fast read, but it’s also a resource you can revisit time and again. I plan on seeing Rogue One again (naturally), and I always find reference materials like this only enrich my subsequent viewings.

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