That’s no moon. With the Essential Reader’s Companion only 3 weeks away, copies are landing on the desks of the official types (with, one assumes, an audible thud.) Expect to see a lot of reviewer tweets about it soon. In the meantime, you can get a closer look at some of the portraits and check out the first 28 pages in the Random House catalog. (via)
The blogside. Tor’s Emily Asher-Perrin takes a look at ‘the true nature of the force,’ addressing a lot of the weird and complicated issues at hand with ‘balance’ and all the rest of the simple tricks and nonsense scattered throughout fandom.
Namesake corner.Reports out of SDCC are saying that Kotobukiya’s next Star Wars Bishoujo statue will be none other than Mara Jade. (NOT the figure at right; see below.) Here’s hoping they show the same restraint they did with their Jaina Solo, though I’m guessing the catsuit will be anything but optional.
Events. Lucasfilm and its publishers have announced a a national Star Wars Reads Day for October 6. Bookstores and libraries who participate will get a free event kit, plus I suspect the 501st and Rebel Legion will be all over this.
The blogside. Tricia Barr and the late Racheal Ambrose discuss the Hapans; Topless Robot picks the best and worst of Marvel Star Wars
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)
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 Killiron-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.
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.
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.
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.
Sneak peeks. There’s been an abundance of previews for Essential Guide to Warfare. Three on Facebook (a map, Lando at Taanab and one of Luke and Daala. Dude is too old for the shag, not that I’m advocating a return to the Wall Street.) plus 10 more at io9 today. Lots of ships and battles and things, but there is one of Anakin and Ahsoka.
The blogside. With a title like ‘We Don’t Need George Lucas,’ the latest Action/Reaction over at EU Cantina was was bound to be controversial. Chris has some interesting points (yes, George Lucas worship does get out of hand from some aspects of fandom) but I don’t really agree with everything he says (I have no regrets on our coverage of Red Tails or Amanda Lucas) And course we’ve always had coverage of thingsoutside the realm of Star Wars and the Expanded Universe. I’m not so fond of the ‘telling other people how to be a fan’ aspect, but it’s certainly an issue worth giving some thought.