Star Wars: The Last Jedi is on many minds these days and with the latest commercial, longtime fans are no doubt in a frenzy to see the next chapter of the Skywalker family. But what if you are not a fan? How does anyone who has never heard of Star Wars become a fan? This is the crisis that author Christian Blauvelt solves perfectly with his new book Star Wars Made Easy.
As part of the promotional campaign of Journey to Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Blauvelt, a Star Wars fan since childhood, wanted to write a book that explains everything about Star Wars. Divided into eleven sections, Blauvelt has not only successfully written a book that accurately sums up the wonder and awe that is all things Star Wars, almost an indoctrination manual to newbies, but a great read for any diehard fan of the series.
Starting with a section that focuses on the basics of Star Wars, Blauvelt’s following chapter’s dives deep into the story and characters that make up the movies and television series in the saga. The only filmed aspect of Star Wars that Blauvelt doesn’t discuss is the Star Wars Christmas Special. Probably best to let the Christmas special stay dead.
His first chapter about the basics jumps into everything you might have heard about Star Wars and quickly acquaints any reader with what it all means. Whether you’re wondering how people travel or who is a good guy or bad guy, Star Wars Made Easy answers all of your questions.
Each chapter starts off with a handy visual timeline of the major events in the story, which make for a more informative and fun way to summarize the movies. The chapters finish off with a descriptive infographic that explains each pivotal battle for the movie, showing who was involved and provided separate bubbles about the key moments to the battle. Each battle infographic has a two to three sentence summary of the event. To the non-fan, seeing these images of the events in the movies would whet your appetite for wanting to watch the films.
As I read through the book, I couldn’t get over how succinctly Blauvelt summarized all relevant facts into his 189 pages of text. This book is not a glossary of Star Wars facts, rather it is a narrative by Blauvelt that has explored questions that many Star Wars fans argue about incessantly.
Whether it is discussing the issue of who shot first, Han or Greedo, or looking at Lando’s betrayal of Han and Leia in The Empire Strikes Back, Blauvelt has written a book that is not only a beginners guide to the universe, but a reference point for fans to look at and quote the wisdom of when arguing with friends about whether Ewoks are cute little creatures, or just plain awful.
I personally enjoyed each page of this book because I not only experienced a summary of Star Wars canon but also laughed along at the many quips made by Blauvelt throughout the book. I never felt like Blauvelt was trying to tell me what to think about Star Wars. Instead, it was like I was sitting down with a friend discussing the merits of my favorite movie series.
The book concludes with a look at Episode VIII: The Last Jedi, showing images from the upcoming movie and explaining the facts behind some of the story without spoiling the movie. You get to know what the Porgs are, who Rose is, and a look and some locations the heroes of the movie might visit. The picture of Canto Bight makes me very interested to see who goes to this intergalactic version of Monte Carlo.
I could not put this book down, and I highly recommend Christian Blauvelt’s Star Wars Made Easy. It will delight all fans and will make you a fan of the Skywalker’s, even if you can’t tell the difference between a wookie and an ewok.
Editor’s note: This review by Bill looking at the book Star Wars Made Easy is one of two takes currently featured on Laughing Place. To read Mitchell’s thoughts on the book, click here.