Excited to read the two latest novels in the Star Wars mythology, but trying to figure out how to fit them into your schedule? Join Dan Z at the beginning of each episode of Coffee With Kenobi as he reads Leia: Princess of Alderaan and Phasma over the next two months, and discusses them a few chapters a time. Here’s the reading schedule:
The good ‘ol days; that’s one of the things many of us reminisce about when discussing classic Star Wars memories and collectibles. Abrams’ latest, the Star Wars Topps Classic Sticker Book, helps add to our recollections with the first collection of vintage Topps stickers in one book. With more than 250 stickers to choose from, (with every one scanned from the originals) your trip down memory lane will be complete. However, the Star Wars Topps Classic Sticker Book is so much more than that.
With the release of Rogue One came a bevy of new characters in the Star Wars universe. Two of the breakout stars of the popular film, Chirrut Imwe and Baze Malbus, are featured in Greg Rucka’s Star Wars Guardians of the Whills, and are more fully formed as dynamic characters in the new book. Rucka beautifully shifts the third person narrative from each main character’s perspective and provides important motivation for a richer understanding of their crusade against the Empire. The Star Wars universe has a rich history of ambiguity, regarding many of their characters’ backgrounds, and with Star Wars: Guardians of the Whills, an intriguing piece of the proverbial puzzle is provided.
I have been co-hosting the Legends Library Podcast on the Coffee With Kenobi Network for two years now. The Legends timeline is completely immersive for me, but each time a new canon book is released it gives me the opportunity to swim to the surface, pop my head up and see what adventures our heroes both new and old are experiencing. This week I did just that, as I basically consumed the newest release from the Star Wars story group and Del Rey, Catalyst.
Star Wars Year by Year: A Visual History, Updated Edition by Daniel Wallace and Pablo Hidalgo is a revised edition of the original visual history (originally published in October of 2012). Naturally, additional entries have been crafted to reflect what has transpired in the Star Wars universe since 2012, with additional emphasis on The Force Awakens, Star Wars Rebels, etc. Approximately 60 pages have been added since the original, and like its predecessor, is an absolute Star Wars fan’s dream come true.
Fortunately for me, Dan Z has provided a wonderful review of Chuck Wendig’s Aftermath: Life Debt, which you can read here. That leaves my task at hand to discuss Marc Thompson’s reading of this novel and the production value of the audiobook itself. In full disclosure, I have not listened to an audiobook in many years, so this was a wonderful treat to be able to experience the medium at its finest.
Aftermath: Life Debt is the second novel in Chuck Wendig’s post Return of the Jedi trilogy, which continues the story of what happened to the galaxy once the second Death Star was destroyed by Lando Calrissian and the Rebel Alliance. As with the first novel, Aftermath, Life Debt follows the exploits of Norra Wexley and her assortment of characters from every walk of life in Star Wars. While I enjoyed Aftermath, it certainly was a departure from the usual Star Wars lore, with legitimately gritty characters and a truly lived in, raw universe that bordered on nihilism. Life Debt does something wondrous, in that it takes those stakes and original characters and evolves them into a group you not only care about, but learn to love. In a well-established lore, Life Debt adds emotional depth and dimension to the Star Wars universe that is equal parts mature and deliciously entertaining.
As if Star Wars couldn’t get more clever, Disney Lucasfilm Press has released Star Wars ABC-3PO Alphabet Book, by Calliope Glass and Caitlin Kennedy, with illustrations by Katie Cook, and it is beyond charming. The forty-eight page book is geared towards children ages 4-8, and is an absolute delight to share with your children. You cannot help but smile with every entry, as the book has a lyrical poetic style perfectly complimented by the art. If you want your children to love learning the alphabet, and have fun along the way, the Star Wars ABC-3PO Alphabet Book is absolutely the way to go.
Claudia Gray brings her gifted pen back to the Star Wars universe with the much-anticipated book, Bloodline. The Princess Leia centered novel focuses on her role as a significant and powerful senator in the New Republic, and takes place years before The Force Awakens. Bloodline manages to do something exquisite and rare: it exceeds the anticipatory nature of the genre and truly enhances the Star Wars canon. It operates on a sublime level of pacing, intensity, and suspense that will leave you eager to discover more. Expertly crafted, beautifully written, and full of dramatic tension, Bloodline is the book we’ve been waiting for.
Very Minor Spoilers follow below … you may wish to read Bloodline before proceeding.
The new collection of short stories from Disney Lucasfilm Press, Star Wars The Force Awakens: Tales From A Galaxy Far, Far Away Volume I: Aliens, is the work of author Landry Q. Walker, and provides some colorful insights into some of the inhabitants of Jakku, as well as Maz Kanata’s castle. There are six stories in all, with each one presenting a different genre; each individual story is crafted to fit the tone of the specific genre subset, and each is a delightful example of storytelling at its finest. From the old west, to a murder mystery, to a thrilling pirate adventure, and so on, Star Wars The Force Awakens: Tales From A Galaxy Far, Far Away Volume I: Aliens is an entertainment tour de force that will provide hours of enjoyment for fans of storytelling.