Tag Archives: essential guides

Readers have no love for the catsuit, either; First look at Mara in the Essential Reader’s Companion

Not a lot of love for the catsuit round these parts this week. On Tumblr, Molly approached the outfit from a costumer’s perspective, and Ellen Hyde pointed out that it and the Jabba’s dancer outfit are the only Mara costumes recognized by the 501st – while you can get into the Rebel Legion with the green Visions of the Future getup, it’s not that many options. I realize the costuming organizations have to draw the line somewhere, but maybe the 501st will OK the Choices of One version one day?

But I do have a treat for you! Del Rey editor Erich Schoeneweiss has generously shared with us a piece of Mara artwork from Pablo Hidalgo’s Essential Reader’s Companion, which is due out October 2. It’s by Darren Tan and shows Mara’s first encounter with the Yuuzhan Vong in Vector Prime – and no, she’s not in the catsuit. Check it out under the cut.

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EUbits: Mercy Kill in drips and dabbles

Excerpts. It’s easy to miss, but if you head over to the Random House page for X-Wing: Mercy Kill, there are 32 pages from the book available. (Click on the cover.) It includes the dramatis personae that caused such a furor when the ARCs went out as well as the first pages of 22 chapters. Weird, yes? (via)


The blogside. Joysweeper at Scans Daily takes a look at Luke Skywalker’s worst comic outfits. She’s not kidding; there’s a mesh shirt. Oh, Marvel. Also: An interview with costumer Victoria Schmidt; convention tall tales; and a review of Coruscant Nights I: Jedi Twilight.


Upcoming. Rebelscum has covers and summaries for two upcoming comic collections – Dawn Of The Jedi: Force Storm and new Clone Wars omnibus, The Republic Falls – as well as the next arc of Agent Of The Empire.


Awards. Tom Taylor’s Blood Ties has won the The Stan Lee Excelsior Award, which encourages kids to read comics and graphic novels.


Behind the scenes. The Young to Publishing Group has four keys to success in licensed publishing, which features several familiar names.


Endnotes. I’ve run out of things to say about the things, so just let it be known that Jason Fry has posted part 14 and part 15 of his guide to everything Essential Guide to Warfare.

EUbits: Del Rey swags up for convention season

Convention swag. Star Wars Books has revealed some of the summer freebies on their Facebook. There’s a nifty 84-page sample books with excerpts and the Insider short stories, a Mercy Kill iron-on and Scoundrels bookmarks. The catch: There are 7, but they won’t all be available at the same con, so unless you’re going to be at SDCC, CVI and NYCC, prepare to swap with some pals to get them all.

In other relevant con season news, Christie Golden will be at SDCC, and Erich is looking to arrange a Warfare signing with Jason Fry and some of the artists.


The blogside. Skuldren wants a Streen series, while Bry Dean reviews I, Jedi and Tosche Station looks back at The Bacta War.


Gaming stuff. Drew Karpyshyn’s The Old Republic: Annihilation has been blessed by the blurb fairy. (via) There’s also going to be an Old Republic Encyclopedia.


Audiobooks. Speaking of Karpyshyn, his Darth Bane books will be getting the unabridged audiobook treatment. Look for them in October.


Endnotes. Never-ending endnotes! Jason Fry has posted part 13 of his look behind The Essential Guide to Warfare

EUbits: EUC chats with Lucas Books art director; fansites take to the blogside

Interview. EUCantina interviews Lucas Books Art Director Scott Biel about creating covers for Star Wars books. He talks about the process, why the Mercy Kill cover got a makeover, and Mara Jade’s Choices of One jumpsuit.

In other news, EUC is kicking off their Summer Reading for Children’s Literacy program on July 11th. They’re (again) raising money for Reading is Fundamental.


The blogside. Lots going on this week! At The Galactic Drift, Racheal takes a look at how Tahiri Veila has been misused, while NJOE’s new hire Matthew Rushing takes on the state of Luke Skywalker. Meanwhile, Megan at Knights Archive reviews Luke Skywalker and the Shadows of Mindor, and Tosche Station is taking a look with their X-Wing Retrospective.


Conventions. The Del Rey folks will have a double-sided poster that they’ll be giving out during summer con season. It features the cover art from The Essential Reader’s Companion and The Old Republic: Annihilation. Look for Del Rey at San Diego Comic Con, Star Wars Celebration VI, and New York Comic Con.


eBooks. Knights Archive looks at the upcoming Star Wars eBook releases.


Endnotes. Jason Fry posted the 12th part of the series going behind-the-scenes of The Essential Guide to Warfare.

EUbits: Everybody loves pilots


Spotlight. Essential Guide to Warfare co-author Paul Urquhart takes a look at ‘the best star-pilots in the galaxy’. But what we’re really talking about here is the art by Frank-Joseph “Mazzic” Frelier, which includes what I think is out first look at Syal Antilles.

In other Warfare-related matters, there have been three more installments of endnotes since we last checked in: 9, 10 and 11.


Awards. John Jackson Miller’s Knight Errant is a Scribe Award nominee for Best Original Novel in the Speculative Fiction category. The International Association of Media Tie-In Writers are also naming Expanded Universe alumni Kevin J. Anderson as the year’s Grandmaster. Other familiar names among the nominees include Mike Stackpole (for his Conan the Barbarian adaption) and A.C. Crispin for her Pirates of the Caribbean novel.


Interviews. Lots of them! In the world of podcasts, we have Aaron Allston over at Tosche Station Radio and Mike Stackpole at Star Wars Book Report. If you can stomach the ForceCast, they had Leland Chee on, plus there’s a new Jedi Journals. If it’s text you prefer, Tom Taylor talks Darth Maul at CBR.


Teases. A bounty hunter short story by a new-to-Star Wars author will be gracing the pages of Insider #136. Karen Miller’s Myri Antilles story will be in the next issue, #135.


Now hiring… NJOE, EUCantina and Knights Archive are looking for some dedicated fans to join their respective sites. (Rather limited) internet fame! Glamour! No money! But possibly drinks at CVI!

Would this have made a better New Jedi Order?

In an excerpt from Pablo Hidalgo’s Essential Reader’s Companion, an early concept for the New Jedi Order series is revealed:

“The story arc was to very closely hew to the myth structure of the Hero’s Journey as outlined by Joseph Campbell, a huge influence on the creation of the Star Wars cinematic story. With that as its basic framework, the plot underwent much evolution and exploration. Its earliest descriptions had Luke Skywalker sending the three Solo children on an epic quest, upon which they encounter a new female character from the invading species sent to infiltrate the galaxy. This unnamed female corrupts Anakin, nearly turning him to the dark side, but she falls in love with him and Anakin instead redeems her. In a fit of intense sibling rivalry, Jacen and Jaina turn on Anakin, and in the resulting conflict, Jacen dies.”

So much in the EU depends on the authors and the execution, but I can’t say this story idea doesn’t strike me as a better one than the muddled mess we eventually got.

EUbits: The great gender kerfuffle of 2012

The blogside. There are, so, so many great responses out to EUC’s gender post now. (Why ours is the only one with 100+ comments and some hella tangents, I remain perplexed. Or maybe that’s just my headache speaking.) Synlah and Skuldren at Roqoo Depot were first out the gate with cluelessness in Star Wars. Emily at Tosche Station wrote Why Star Wars needs women – now more than ever. Rachael of The Galactic Drift says that asking for equality in Star Wars isn’t sexist, and, later (inspired by our comment section, I believe) how turning women into sex objects removes their humanity. And Tricia and Lex at FangirlBlog addressed how the original post missed the point of Star Wars and fandom, and Tricia came back last night with a look at the silver linings of the whole thing.

And, finally, Pete Morrison at Lightsaber Rattling took a look at the dramatis personae of Star Wars novels from the last few years and did a gender breakdown that showed male characters outnumber females almost 2 to 1.

Say what you will about EUC’s post, but it certainly got fandom talking!


Get your X-Wings in bulk. Knights Archive found a listing on Random Houses’ Smart Archive for an eBook bundle of the X-Wing novels. There’s no price yet, but it does include all the classic Stackpole and Allston books and goes on sale July 30th. That’s cutting it a little close for those who want to catch up or reread: Allston’s X-Wing: Mercy Kill will be out the very next week.


The most magnificent motivation of all. Peter David has republished the first draft of Skippy the Jedi Droid, his classic Star Wars story from the much-missed Star Wars Tales comic. (via)


Celebration VI. The first Celebration Show Store exclusive to be announced is a 12″ figure of Clone Commander Ganch from Sideshow. Why is he here? Because he was created by Pablo Hidalgo and Tom Hodges for the The Clone Wars webcomics.


Background. Even more endnotes for The Essential Guide to Warfare..


Reviews. James reads Dark Times: Out of the Wilderness #5 and Boba Fett is Dead #1.

EUbits: EUC’s #SWEU t-shirts benefit Reading is Fundamental

For a good cause. EUCantina is selling #SWEU t-shirts with all the profits going to CJ’s favorite charity, Reading is Fundamental. There’s far more than tees in the store, and $3 of each purchase will go towards the charity. (Which really needs all the help it can get right now.)

UPDATE: There are tees for #ZahnSolo as well.


The blogside. Galactic Drift makes a point about poorly crafted villians, something some of us saw as a major problem in Fate of the Jedi. Meanwhile, Tosche Station collected folks dream Star Wars novels.


Interviews. Tom Taylor talked to Big Shiny Robot, Rebelscum and CNN.


Background. Even more Essential Guide to Warfare endnotes from Jason Fry. Speaking of, Jacob, one of Jawajames’ friends, recorded Fry’s author talk and more at one of the San Diego “Attack of the Authors” tour stops. (You did watch James’ interview, right?)


Reviews. James takes a look at Dawn of the Jedi #3 and Crimson Empire III: Empire Lost #6.

EUbits: What a long, hard Fate it’s been

The blogside. Over at Tosche Station, Brian has a two-part retrospective of Fate of the Jedi. The series has garnered some mixed reviews, but overall I have to agree with some of Brian on this one, particularly regarding Luke/the Jedi, the arc-welding in Abeloth’s backstory, and the overall issues with Denning. Brian’s also revised his review of Apocalypse.

Warfare fallout. Jason Fry has posted his endnotes for The Essential Guide to Warfare in three parts, while his co-author Paul Urquhart writes (naturally) about the wackier side of the book at Suvudu.

Interviews. EU Cantina talks to comic writer Tom Taylor about his upcoming Darth Maul mini-series, Invasion, and Boba Fett is Dead. Meanwhile, Newsarama has John Ostrander to discuss Dawn of the Jedi in some detail.

Whoops! I caught the release date change for Lost Tribe of the Sith: The Collected Stories last week, but not that it had changed formats from paperback to trade paperback. Guess someone likes the Sith…

WTF of the week. Kevin J. Anderson invented the Killiks. Of course he did.

Reviews. James enjoys the unexpected trickery in Knights of the Old Republic – War #4 and is satisfied (sort of) by the big ending of Agent of the Empire – Iron Eclipse #5.

Recap: Jason Fry on The Essential Guide to Warfare

There was another Star Wars Books chat today, this time with Jason Fry (and, via proxy, co-author Paul Urquhart) on The Essential Guide to Warfare. Chats for this type of continuity-baiting books do tend to be a tad calmer than for the big fiction books, so I’ll do a more straightforward recap.

However, because some of the questions touch on some fairly obscure parts of the EU, I have added a few notes and Wookiepedia links where called for. Be cautious: There may be spoilers in the links.

Head beneath the cut to check it out!

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