With the release of a new “Star Wars” movie, readers are primed to enjoy the textual versions of this legendary story. From picture book, to easy reader, to graphic novel, young fans can find a book that is just right for bring this story to life.
“Jedi Academy: Return of the Padawan”, Jeffrey Brown, 2014, Scholastic, 176 pages, ages 8-11.
Tween Roan Novachez’s trials and tribulations at the Jedi Academy are shared in this graphic novel series. This outer space version of middle school presents the typical issues of friends, fitting in, and becoming comfortable with yourself, all within the midst of robots, aliens, and star pilot training.
“Star Wars: The Adventure of Luke Skywalker, Jedi Knight, by Toni Diterlizzi, Illustrated by Ralph McGuarrie, 2014, Lucas Film Press, ages 8-12.
The original “Star Wars” saga is retold in this picture book, featuring sketches and paintings from illustrator Ralph McGuarrie, who did conceptual design work for the original “Star Wars” trilogy. While it would be difficult for a book of this length to retell the entire “Star Wars” story, Diterlizzi has creatively interwoven the story with action words and strategically placed direct quotes from the screenplays. The action-packed text and beautiful illustrations make this a must-see for “Star Wars” fans of all ages.
“Star Wars Rebels: A New Hero” by Pablo Hidalgo, 2014, Lucas Film Press, ages 5-8.
Fighting the Empire is the primary mission of the “Star Wars Rebels”, a book series created as a companion for the Disney XD animated television series. In this longer picture book, readers are introduced to Ezra, a brave boy who takes on the Empire alone. His acts of bravery soon lead him to the Rebels, a rag-tag group of alien and mortal fighters who seek to save the planet Lothal. A free ebook accompanies the purchase of the picture book.
“Star Wars: Escape from Darth Vader”, Level 1, by Michael Siglain, Illustrated by Stephane Roux, 2014, ages 5-7.
Beginning readers can enjoy the “Star Wars” story with this level one book that includes simple text and repetitive words that are a direct match to the illustrations. Star Wars heroes R2-D2, C-3PO, and Princess Leia are introduced and their actions engagingly portrayed even in this easy reader.
“Star Wars Rebels: Ezra and the Pilot”, Level 2, by Jennifer Heddle, 2014, ages 5-7.
The “Star Wars Rebels” continue to rage a battle against the Empire in this level two reader. With text composed of compound sentences and contractions, and a simple story line, young readers can enjoy the rebel action of Ezra and the other brave characters in this series.
Reviewed by Elizabeth Dobler