Friday, May 4, 2018

STAR WARS REVISITED: A Book Series Spotlight

You guys!  It's Star Wars Day!  

My daughter  recently discovered a storied retelling of the original (ahem...only) Star Wars movies and loved them, and although I haven't actually read them myself, I feel like today is the perfect day to share them with you.  Consider these a book spotlight, rather than a review, but know that they come with a twelve-year-old Star Wars geek's fervent recommendation.  As each book is written by a different author, I've included an excerpt from each one so you can get a sense of their writing style.

Star Wars: A New Hope (The Princess, the Scoundrel, and the Farmboy) 
by Alexandra Bracken, author of The Darkest Minds series

Image result for princess farmer scoundrelLeia wasn't the girl they thought she was.

THat girl might have seen this plan through successfully.  The crew of the Tantive IV thought Senator Leia Organa would be able to get them untangled from the net she'd flown them straight into.  But her plan had gone so wrong - so wrong.   There wasn't any way out, any way to save them.  She had let them down and now there was only one hope for completing her mission.


Leia had never been inside the access corridors on the ship.  They were meant for droids and technicians to get around without being trampled underfoot by the crew.  Her heart thundered in time with her boots as she ran, and she was sure she'd never find the labor pool.  The dull metal corridors and paths were lit by only a few crimson lights, and parts of it were so tight she barely managed to squeeze through without ripping her dress.  Blast it- of every color under every sun, why had she chosen to wear white? She stood out in the darkness like a reactor core.  

An easy target(excerpt from book)

Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back (So You Want to Be a Jedi?)
by Adam Gidwitz, author of The Dark and Grimm series

Image result for so you want to be a jediSo you want to be a Jedi?  I get that.  It seems cool.  You can move things with your mind.  Control people with your thoughts.  Oh, and the lightsabers.  Yeah, those are awesome.  But listen, it's not all mind control and weaponized flashlights.  Being a Jedi requires patience and strength and self-awareness.  And training.  Lots of training?  You still want to be a Jedi?

Tell you what.  I'm going to tell you a story.  Not just a story.  The story.  The story of one of the greatest Jedi ever.  As I tell it, I'm going to give you some tests.  To see if you've got what it takes.   If' you're afraid, I don't blame you.  Most folks don't have what it takes.  Most folks are just ordinary.  Which is okay.  There is nothing wrong with ordinary.  But if you're ordinary, you can't be a Jedi. 

Do you want to hear the story?  And do you want to undergo the tests?  Do you still want to be a Jedi?  Okay.

This is the story of a young man.  His name was Luke Skywalker.  Now, even though this story is about him, I'm not going to tell it that way.  You want to become a Jedi.  He became one of the greatest Jedi of all.  If you want to follow in his footsteps, you need to walk in his shoes.  I mean, really walk in his shoes.  And wear his clothes.  And carry his lightsaber.  And share his friends.  And fight his enemies.  You need, for the duration of the story, to become Luke.  If you do, you will have walked the long, difficult dangerous path of a Jedi.  That path begins a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away....  (excerpt from book intro)

Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (Beware the Power of the Dark Side) 
by Tom Angleberger (author of the Origami Yoda books)

Image result for beware the dark side bookJabba the Hutt is a giant, evil space slug.  And like a slug, he's rather helpless on his own.  Tiny arms,no legs, no armor, no weapons. Well, he does have one weapon -- his mind.  A mind vile and corrupt even by Hutt standards.  By the sheer force of his own greed, he has risen to the top -- or perhaps the bottom, depending on your point of view.

As the most feared crime lord in the galaxy, he can afford to hire all the help he needs -- smugglers, thieves,bounty hunters, and plenty of piglike warriors to guard his palace.  

Just as a slug prefers to hid under a rock, Jabba has chosen a dark, damp place for his palace.  The nicer rooms are like a dungeon and the dungeon is...unspeakable.  It's a fortress, really.  So deep in the dunes that the desert itself is all the defense generally needed.  Even so, under Jabba's orders the old monastery was obsessively fortified by master armorers.  Yes, it's the perfect place for this rancid crime lord to slither away and hide, wallowing in his slimy pleasures and chortling over his ill-gotten treasures.  And his newest treasure -- for which he had to pay the cunning bounty hunter Boba Fett a medium-sized fortune  -- is Han Solo.  


I hope you've found something to satisfy the Padawans and Jedi Apprentices in your life.  Mine sure liked it.

And again, Happy Star Wars Day!

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