Entertainment Weekly reports that Journey to Episode VII – of which we’ve already heard about in drips and drabbles – will in fact encompass 20 books and comics across the various publishers. (Including such things as ‘sticker books,’ so it’s not exactly the New Jedi Order all over again, thankfully.)
“The Force Awakens is an extraordinarily, heavily guarded storyline. To track it, a lot of top-secret meetings were happening up in San Francisco as we worked through this program,” says Andrew Sugerman, executive vice president of Disney Publishing Worldwide. The company is managing the release through its own imprints as well as at least seven outside companies, among them sci-fi publisher Del Rey, Dorling Kindersley, and Marvel Comics.
The only Del Rey book mentioned is Star Wars: Aftermath – no author is given, but it certainly sounds like something in the new gap years between Return of the Jedi and The Force Awakens. Marvel will put out at least two TFA prequel stories, including one from Threepio’s perspective.
The YA books – the one we’ve primarily heard about thus far, do get authors:
Cecil Castellucci (author of Tin Star) will write Moving Target, an adventure following Princess Leia; Jason Fry, who earlier wrote Darth Maul: Shadow Conspiracy, will be the author of The Weapon of a Jedi, about Luke Skywalker; Claudia Gray, author of the Evernight series of fantasy books, will write a book titled Lost Stars; and Greg Rucka, a comic book scribe and writer of the Atticus Kodiak novels, will pen Smuggler’s Run, a Han Solo tale.
We knew about Claudia Gray, and Jason Fry is (so far) our only returning author. Now, we wait for more from Del Rey and Marvel… Cross your fingers.
It’s not clear if ‘Journey to Episode VII’ will be an official series title for the young adult books leading into the movie, but Jedi Bibliothek (translated) did reveal the first title: The Weapon of a Jedi: A Luke Skywalker Adventure. It’s expected to summarize Luke’s story from the original trilogy, touching on events after Return of the Jedi, perhaps all the way up to the start of Episode VII.
Star Wars meets Romeo and Juliet in this epic YA novel that follows two best friends who find themselves on opposite sides of the war between the Empire and the Rebellion.
This thrilling YA novel gives readers a macro view of some of the most important events in the Star Wars universe: from the purge of the Jedi in Episode III, to the beginnings of the rebellion in Star Wars Rebels, and through the fall of the Empire in Episodes IV-IV. Readers will experience these major moments through the eyes of two best friends who grow up in these troubling times, and find themselves on opposite sides of the war.
As with other Journey to Episode VII titles, hints about the upcoming film will be included in the narrative, as well a original, post-Episode VI content that sets up the new film.
So these books may not be as full of potential spoilers as we may have originally expected. Later:
Chapters alternate perspectives between our two protagonists–one a Rebel pilot, the other an Imperial officer. By exploring these two different worlds, readers will experience many of the major moments in the original Star Wars trilogy–from the destruction of the Death Star, to the battle of Hoth–through these two characters’ eyes.
I’m not at all familiar with Gray’s previous work aside from recognizing a few of the covers, but she is described as “a lifelong Star Wars fan.”