BOOK REVIEW: NEW STAR WARS PUBLICATIONS – DK

In the run up to The Last Jedi, Dorling Kindersley (DK) are helping Star Wars fans navigate all the newest changes to the saga with some further essential publications. Obviously the books are tailored for all fans, but as a Star Wars blogger, I do find that these DK books are among the most valuable of the reference books on my shelves from two perspectives. Firstly, as an aide memoir; I find them increasingly necessary as the new continuity unfolds. Secondly, for those times when you need a fresh take on things, you will normally find a new interesting point or object being highlighted, often times subjects deliberately shrouded in tantalizing mystery. Either way they are an endless source of inspiration.

The site will be highlighting a number of these DK publications between now and the end of the year. Two publications are immediately available though and are highly recommended.

Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know (Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi)

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Although ostensibly for younger readers I found Star Wars: Absolutely Everything You Need to Know (Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi) a fascinating book to read through. I think this is because it seems to naturally blend all elements of the saga together. We have Episodes I to VIII covered – there is a closing chapter on The Last Jedi and the imagery utilized is beautiful with an especially interesting section on Canto Bight. Also, before you ask there are Porgs!

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Elsewhere the book covers The Clone Wars, Rogue One and Star Wars; Rebels. I particularly liked the way the Lothal Rebels and the Rebel Alliance we know from the films are presented in succession and in a connected way.

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It is split up into 5 chapters;

  • Protectors of the Galaxy;
  • Bad Guys, Bounty Hunter and the Underworld;
  • Weird and Wonderful Beings
  • In a Galaxy Far, Far, Away…
  • The Battle Continues

The book is excellent at presenting all the moving parts of the Star Wars continuity in a holistic fashion, and much credit goes to the writing team of Adam Bray, Kerrie Dougherty, Cole Horton and Michael Kogge. A number of additional photos of the book can be accessed on our Instagram feed here.

Star Wars: The Visual Encyclopedia

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The second publication, Star Wars: The Visual Encyclopedia has been out for slightly longer, but is just as fascinating and is pitched at older readers. That said I noticed my 3 year old spending about half an hour flicking through it the other day happily looking at all the images. Not to be confused with the DK Visual Dictionaries, this book again applies a themed but holistic approach across all of the different outputs within the saga: including Episodes I-VII, The Clone Wars, Rebels and Rogue One. I should point out that the critical details from The Clone War era are particularly well represented; and the political dimensions are rendered very well in the History section of the book.

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Again, following a good foreword from Dennis Muren of ILM, the book is separated up into 5 components:

  • Geography
  • Nature
  • History
  • Culture
  • Science and Technology

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Part of what always enticed me towards Star Wars over other franchises was the beauty of its design, and the total integrity of the world presented (history, geography, technology, etc). Nowhere is that as apparent as in a survey of this publication which lays them out in exquisite detail. For that much credit has to go to the authors of the book, well known to most Star Wars fans, Tricia Barr, Adam Bray and Cole Horton. For further images of the book, again photos can be accessed on our Instagram feed here.

If you’d like further information on either book let us know – hit us up on Twitter or Instagram at @partisancantina

Images are subject to copyright and will be removed upon request.

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