With so much changing in the world of Star Wars during the last few years, it's no surprise that we're getting a third edition of Star Wars Year by Year: A Visual History, updated and expanded to include all that has come to pass since the last version that was released in October 2012.
And while the focus is very much on Star Wars, events from World History also feature in a ticker-tape that runs along the footer of each page.
Picking up from where the previous edition ended, the book covers 2012 in more detail, with the 3D release of The Phantom Menace in February, the passing of Ralph McQuarrie in March, the appointment of Kathleen Kennedy as Co-Chair of Lucasfilm and the purchase of Lucasfilm by Disney in October being some of the major milestones of that year.
2013 brings with it the news that J.J. Abrams will be directing the as-yet-untitled Episode VII, the end of The Clone Wars series, a new series, Star Wars Rebels is revealed and Rancho Obi-Wan is recognized as the largest collection of Star Wars memorabilia in the world.
The future stars of the still-untitled Episode VII are announced in February 2014, with principal photography beginning a few months later. Star Wars Rebels debuts in October following a preview in July at San Diego Comic-Con and an 88-second trailer for The Force Awakens drops with the title having been revealed just a few weeks before.
Having regained the Star Wars license, Marvel launches its eponymous series in January 2015, while Ahsoka Tano makes a return to the Star Wars universe the following March when she appears in the season finale of Star Wars Rebels. A new teaser for The Force Awakens debuts at Star Wars Celebration in April resulting in a deluge of emotions following Han Solo's uttering of the now-immortal line, "Chewie, we're home", while Christopher Lee passes away in June and Star Wars Rebels returns the same month. Star Wars is announced for Disney Infinity in August, while Force Friday sees the release of a swathe of The Force Awakens merchandise, toys and collectibles including Sphero's BB-8 and Hasbro's Constable Zuvio action figure, with YouTube hosting a live stream of many of the products being unboxed, but the main event for the year is the release of The Force Awakens on December 18th.
Print publishing being what it is, 2016 is afforded a two-page spread with the highlights being The Force Awakens becoming the highest grossing film in US history, season three of Star Wars Rebels starting and the release of the much-anticipated Rogue One in December following the product launch of tie-in merchandise a few months earlier.
So while anyone who has one or both of the previous editions of Star Wars Year by Year: A Visual History clearly won't find as much new content as someone who doesn't, there's still plenty of fresh material to appreciate, even if much of it is common knowledge and easily found on the Internet. If nothing else, it allows one to cast their mind back to certain dates and reminisce on how they felt when a certain announcement was made, and when it's Star Wars-related, there's a good chance it'll be a positive memory, right?
As an added incentive, Star Wars Year by Year: A Visual History includes two stylish prints of concept art from The Force Awakens, and also comes with a nice slip-case featuring embossed lettering and two-tone pictures of Kylo Ren on the front and Darth Vader on the back.
Star Wars Year by Year: A Visual History is available now online and from all good bookstores, priced $50.00 in the U.S. and $62.00 in Canada.
As always, a big thanks to DK Canada, whose Star Wars Boutique you can visit here. For all of your monthly roundup of Star Wars publishing news, commentary, and discussion on the latest releases in the realm of novels, comics, and magazines, don't forget to listen to Jedi Journals.
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