Fortunately, there’s a plethora of great reading material (especially in the nonfiction area) recently released that will help you celebrate May the Fourth in style and step up your geek factor. Below, you’ll find some hand-picked (by me) suggestions of books to pick up to commemorate Star Wars this month:
Abrams Books has been doing a solid job of producing the most interesting (and comprehensive) coffee table books for Star Wars fans. Between their stunning, Art of books for the last couple movies, and their Ralph McQuarrie tome, they continually release content that visually engages fans.
A pair of new releases could be exactly what you need to get in the Star Wars spirit this week/month. Star Wars Widevision: The Original Topps Trading Card Series, Volume One is a comprehensive visual breakdown of the cards featured in Topps’ Widevision series that initially started back in 1995. On top of featuring all of that first series, fun commentary and tidbits of information are included as well.
Similarly, the Star Wars Topps Classic Sticker Book features sticker designs from days of yore, reproducing (often in their original sizes) stickers released by Topps between 1977 and 1983. It even comes with poster layouts for you to arrange your stickers and have some fun with your younglings as well.
For collectors, it’s a neat way to visualize all of the cards in the series and see how the trading cards have evolved. Even if you’ve never cared for card collecting, it’s an interesting visual history of this area of collecting. At the very least, it’s a bunch of cool images and stickers for you to enjoy!
One of my favorite coffee table books came out several years ago from DK and provided an impressive history of Star Wars based on each year since its launch. The book makes a snapshot of each year, highlighting all of the major milestones that took place within that year. The result was a comprehensive breakdown of how the Star Wars franchise has progressed throughout all of pop culture leading up to modern times.
Back in September, DK launched an updated and expanded version of the book including all of the new information added in from the last several years. Considering the first version launched well before the Disney takeover and announcement of new films/TV/book/comics, there’s a LOT more interesting facts to catch up on.
The layout makes it easy to read, and the format is one where you can open it up to virtually any page and find something interesting. It’s a great way to get your Star Wars on this May the Fourth and find neat information to boot.
If you’re looking to dive headfirst into the Star Wars galaxy, Disney Publishing’s recently released Galactic Maps is a great way to do it. Presented as an “in-universe” guide, the Atlas takes a look at various planets/locations featured in the films and some of the secrets hidden within.
It’s really neat. I know that’s not particularly telling, but it’s easily the most accurate thing I can say about it. The book is large and the paper stock is markedly different than normal book releases. This is purposefully done to evoke the feeling of thumbing through and actual, old-school atlas. It’s a nice touch that only adds to the overall cool factor of the book. Being set within the universe, along with its easy to use layout, the Galactic Atlas is an excellent way to immerse yourself in Star Wars goodness.
While most of this list is stacked with “nonfiction” suggestions, many of the new canon novels from Del Rey are excellent ways to get you in the Star Wars mood this May the Fourth. My top pick out of the new canon, for this year’s list, has to go to Claudia Gray’s incredible novel Bloodline.
While it launched last year, it remains one of the most impressive Star Wars novels release (including the last couple decades of old Expanded Universe/Legends books). Better yet, it takes place just five years before The Force Awakens, with a story that gives intriguing hints of what’s to come along with poignant character moments. With The Last Jedi launching this year, it’s the perfect choice.
If you’ve already read Bloodline, Thrawn released just last month and serves as an excellent re-introduction to one of the most beloved, non-movie, characters in all of the Fandom. Both are definitely worth picking up and will dive you deeper into the Star Wars lore, so you can’t go wrong with either.
In the build up to the new era of Star Wars movies, a number of new material has come out to retell the original Star Wars stories, using updated media to rope in new fans and give long time fans something fresh to enjoy. One of the coolest of these, is the Graphic Novel adaptations of the first three films by Alessandro Ferrari.
Just last month, Disney Publishing and Alessandro gave the Prequel trilogy the same treatment. It wonderfully adapts the story of Anakin’s fall to the darkside, bringing along some stellar artwork to boot. Yeah, I know, it’s Prequel related and some fans simply can’t get over that…but hey, they’ll be the ones missing out on a great graphic novel that’s perfect for all ages.