Tag Archives: visions

Our top 10 Star Wars books of 2010

Can’t end the year without a list, can we? Here are our staff’s picks for the ten best books of the year.

Be sure to check out more favorites at StarWars.com. They asked us to do the literature portion, but other contributers include Kyle Newman, Ashley Eckstein, TFN’s Eric Geller, Steve Sansweet, and Bonnie Burton!

10. Star Wars Year by Year: A Visual Chronicle by Daniel Wallace, Pablo Hidalgo, Gus Lopez, and Ryder Windham
Rounding out the list is the one book that has it all. Expanded Universe history? Check. Oddball merchandise? Check. Museum exhibits? Early versions of Yoda? Mark Hamill on Broadway? Check, check, and you better believe it. Star Wars Year by Year compiles over four decades (yes, four) of highlights, lowlights, and trivia – think of it, perhaps, as The Essential Franchise Chronology. But its scope goes beyond Lucasfilm productions. The authors also spotlight various milestones in science, pop-culture, and politics, giving readers a sense of the events that helped shape Star Wars, as well as how Star Wars changed the world. – Stooge

9. The Old Republic: Fatal Alliance by Sean Williams
Setting the stage for the eventual release of The Old Republic MMO, Fatal Alliance builds up the worlds and character types, and then throws them all into the fray against a new threat. Sean Williams captures the look of this era, and brings together some new enjoyable characters. It’s a heist caper that unfolds into a tale of espionage and war. It takes a little while to set up the players, but the endgame is well worth it. - James

8. Millennium Falcon: A 3D Owner’s Guide by Ryder Windham
The saga’s most iconic ship is revealed! Ryder Williams’ text is sparse but clever, the illustration work by Chris Trevas and Chris Reiff shines, and the layer-by-layer design is icing on the cake. Kids will love it and adults will delight in the technical specs and (in-character!) modification notes. It’s a just plain fun book – certain to entrance even the most jaded fan for at least a little while. – Dunc

7. Fate of the Jedi: Vortex by Troy Denning
With Luke and Ben and their new Sith allies having defeated a more sinister evil, you’d think that Troy Denning would take it easy on the Jedi Order, but Abeloth’s demise in Allies is just the beginning of a series of explosive events. Faster that you can say “Curse your sudden but inevitable betrayal”, the Sith bring it. Chief of State Daala brings it. The Mandalorians bring it. Tahiri’s prosecutor brings it. So it’s up to a couple of Jedi, and Han and Leia to strike back – and when they bring Lando and droids to help, you know it’s going to get heavy as the Jedi shake things up against their adversaries. - James

6. The Sounds of Star Wars by J. W. Rinzler and Ben Burtt
A book that needs a volume button? Not to worry, this is more than just a gimmick. To fully explore the audio awesomeness of Ben Burtt, The Sounds of Star Wars has a built-in soundboard which plays over 200 (unmixed!) effects from that galaxy far, far away. So you can read about the crazy ways he made these sounds, then listen to the fantastic end results! Plus, Mr. Burtt has enough behind-the-scenes stories to fill ten volumes – and for a quadruple Oscar-winner, he’s remarkably humble. - Stooge Continue reading

In the news: Vader costume going on the auction block

Costume for sale. An original Darth Vader costume – believed to have been from The Empire Strikes Back – will soon be going up for auction at Christie’s in London. It’s being put up for sale by “an American private collector” and is expected to fetch at least $250,000. A percentage of the sale price will go to cancer research.

In spaaaaace. A stable planet orbiting twin stars has been found 49 light-years away. (Alas – it is a gas giant.) Still, researchers have named the planet “Inrakluk,” which sounds pretty Wookiee to me.

Partnerships. Lucas Online has a new partner, Big Spaceship, for some of their digital endeavors. Maybe this means we’ll see a kickass StarWars.com app?

People. USA Weekend interviews Matt Lanter, the actor who angsts enough for two on The Clone Wars and 90210.

Books. Visions is getting some nice press… Check out a profile of contributing artist Robert Bailey, who got to meet George Lucas, from The Edmonton Journal.

Book Review: Star Wars Art: Visions

It’s the time of year when all the Star Wars ‘holiday books’ are released; leaving fans drooling and wondering which one they should put on their list.  One that seems to have gotten lost in the promotional blitz is Star Wars Art: Visions.

Inspired by an idea George Lucas discussed with J. W. Rinzler, this book is a magnificent collection of art that should please everyone’s tastes.

Each artist was commissioned by Lucas to create their vision of Star Wars.  What they come up with is a wondrous variety of art in styles from Renaissance to Pop and spanning many different aspects of the saga.  Each piece is given its own page or pages on high quality paper.  And this works well, as you’ll want to study many of them in detail.

I had reactions from laughter to sadness.  And they’re each one interesting in their own style.  At the end of the book are explanations of the work from many of the artists that add to the fascination of the book.  It’s well worth the investment.

My only negative is that the binding doesn’t seem quite up to the task of holding the high quality paper.  Only time will tell on that.  But this is definitely a worthy coffee table book that you’ll review time and again.

Out this week, maybe: Visions of Star Wars art

It’s time to start looking in earnest for the art book Star Wars: Visions. While it’s been listed online with a November release date, there have been several reports of it being in stores, which I take to mean that it’s not formally street dated. Preview some of the pieces at Underwire, and be sure to check out Paula’s review.

(Note: This post originally said that The Clone Wars S2 DVDS and TFUII were coming out today. That’s, uhh, next week. Sorry for any confusion.)

EUbits: Visions, crafts, blogs and more

Visions. The cat is officially out of the bag on the upcoming art book, and the previews keep on coming. I’m rather taken with the classical styles of the Daniel E. Greene and Will Wilson pieces.

First look. Bonnie Burton’s craft book!

The blogside:Ben Kuchera of Ars Technica draws a parallel between Grand Admiral Thrawn, Exar Kun, and the Sith of The Old Republic; Maya Kaathryn Bohnhoff on making up planets.

Interviews: NJOE talks to Invasion’s Tom Taylor.

Lists. Topless Robot’s Adam Pawlus counts down his list of the ten best stories in the Expanded Universe. The vast majority of these are at best unnoteworthy to this EU fan, and I certainly can’t condone anyone who puts a Boba Fett comic above the Thrawn trology. (Zahn may not be perfect… But Boba Fett? How uncivilized.)

Namesake corner. Sideshow says Mara Jade will make “an appearance in one of our lines by 2011.”

Blurbs times two: Vortex and Visions

Ewan of SWBooks.co.uk spotted the blurb for Denning’s Fate of the Jedi: Vortex in the Random House Fall catalog. It’s somewhat spoilery, so highlight to read:

In Book Six of the bestselling nine-book Star Wars Fate of the Jedi series, the suspense crescendoes as the Skywalkers and their treacherous Sith allies race against time to discover the origins of the mysterious Force-entity known as Abeloth. When they begin to uncover secrets better kept hidden from mortal minds, no one is surprised to see the uneasy partnership erupt into violence. But they are surprised at where the investigation leads: to the home of the reclusive Fallanassi, who may hold in their hands the future of the Jedi Order itself.

Also appearing in the catalog are The Force Unleashed II (Pencil in November 2010 for the game and October 5 for the book;) and a first look at the cover art for Bonnie Burton’s craft book. (Two words: Lightsaber scissors.)

We’re also finally getting the skinny on Visions, with thanks to Eddie. Blurbs have appeared on both the regular and deluxe editions on Amazon. Here’s what the regular has to say:

Star Wars Visions collects a wealth of art – hand-picked by George Lucas – produced by a variety of artists, illustrators, designers and cartoonists, working across all genres and styles to celebrate their favourite characters, themes, worlds and moments from the Star Wars Universe. The full list of contributors is to be released incrimentally over the 6 months leading up to publication, with sneak previews, on starwars.com.

The deluxe blurb gives a list of artists, and the information that it will come with 50 additional “paintings and illustrations,” which is just mean. But such is life.

And while we’re on the subject, President Obama bought a copy of Star Wars: A Pop-Up Guide to the Galaxy in Iowa City today as a gift for the son of press secretary Robert Gibbs. Hat-tip to reader Greg for the photo link!

EUbits, arty scoundrel edition: Han, Chewie, Lando and Cade

Visions. So I haven’t been unimpressed with the peeks we’ve had of this ‘mystery’ book so far, but I wasn’t really blown away until Raymond Swanland’s ‘Shadows of Tatooine’ appeared today. It may not be ‘The Death of General Wolfe’ pastiche I so greatly desire, but: WANT.

Fate of the Jedi. Why hello there! Get your first look at Lando on the back cover of Allies.

Comics: io9 has the preview for Legacy #46.

EUbits: It’s art week for Star Wars fans

hughes-maraNamesake corner. Topps is saluting the ‘Women of Star Wars‘ in their Galaxy 5 line. And since you can only have so many slave Leias before the theme gets tired, there’s an Adam Hughes Mara Jade card. Granted, it’s Adam Hughes and thus total cheesecake, but we’re used to that.

Visions peek. I can’t believe there’s, like, war and battle and stuff in the Star Wars art book. Ugh. (P.S. If we’re going there, I would love something ROTJish in the style of The Death of General Wolfe. And prints, because I would so totally buy prints of that if it was done with a stylistically straight face.)

Would you like some false hope with that? IGN has ‘thoughtfully’ compiled all the leading candidates for the totally nonexistent, never-going-to-happen (except for probably that bounty hunter thing in the live action series) additional Star Wars movies. Basically, what I am saying is, no matter how good the effects on Avatar are, don’t hold your breath. (Yeah, I am a little sick of this topic and Dark Empire? Are you kidding me? …Sorry.)

Crosscurrent. Check out chapter two of Paul S. Kemp’s upcoming paperback. Meanwhile, the first review has surfaced over at Stomping on Yeti.

The Old Republic. NJOE’s Rogue77 found a brief summary for Sean William’s The Old Republic: Fatal Alliance.