The book cover.

The ebook cowl.
Picture: Perception Editions/Lucasfilm

Star Wars fans are about to get a ebook all about lightsabers and so they have Harry Potter to thank. It’s known as Star Wars: The Lightsaber Assortment, a slick, wide-format, hardcover ebook that options unique photographs and data on virtually 60 different lightsabers within the Star Wars universe. None of which might’ve occurred if not for the boy who lived.

“Perception Editions had printed a earlier ebook known as The Harry Potter Wand Assortment and so that’s the inspiration for this ebook,” Lightsaber Assortment creator Daniel Wallace instructed io9 over the cellphone not too long ago. “[It’s] pages and pages of the wands that had been created for the movies, that are very detailed and really distinctive. After which the apparent concept was, ‘Oh, you can in all probability do this with lightsabers, proper?’” Sure. Sure, you possibly can.

Scheduled for launch October 20, the 156-page ebook doesn’t function each saber in Star Wars historical past, nevertheless it does embrace most of them, from all accessible media. So the sabers from the movies, in fact, but additionally the animated reveals, comedian books, video video games, and extra. When Wallace, who’d beforehand written Star Wars books like The Jedi Path, E book of Sith, and The New Important Information to Droids, got here on board, there was already a grasp checklist of sabers being thought-about.

“It went forwards and backwards as a result of there’s solely so many who we may cowl in there,” Wallace mentioned. After all, there are quite a few iconic movie sabers that needed to be in there, however shortly everybody realized if the ebook was wholly complete, it will turn into boring. “There are lots of ones created for the prequels for the members of the Jedi Council. However a few of them are very related,” Wallace mentioned. “There’s truly a method to a few of them. So it was like, ‘Properly, , we wish to present lots of variation.’”


This saber is from the VR sport Vader Immortal.
Picture: Perception Editions/Lucasfilm

That’s how sabers from all the opposite mediums ended up making it in, from the video game Jedi: Fallen Order, which was simply being launched as Wallace was writing, to the VR game Vader Immortal, all the way in which to The Excessive Republic, the new era of Star Wars storytellingwhich was initially going to start months earlier than this ebook, in August, however now received’t be out till January. Which means The Lightsaber Assortment all of the sudden turned an unofficial, unplanned preview to an entire new Star Wars saga.

“Every little thing happening in 2020 threw a wrench into [The High Republic], so perhaps we ended up lucking out a bit of bit with that,” Wallace mentioned. “However I believe it really works as a pleasant setup for that period, too. This ebook provides a way of the type of that period. [Stellan Gios’ saber] seems to be like a photo-real hilt on this ebook and, as such, I believe it conveys a way of the class of [The High Republic].”

All of these photo-real illustrations, from the sabers to the characters, are an important element of the ebook as nicely. Lukasz Liszko illustrated the lightsabers and Ryan Valle illustrated the characters. Their work, and collaborations with the groups at Lucasfilm, helped set an important tone for the venture. This ebook would take lightsabers very critically.

“This wasn’t a ebook concerning the Jedi and it wasn’t a ebook concerning the Power,” Wallace mentioned. “It was particularly a ebook solely about lightsabers. In order that was actually enjoyable, I believed, as a result of the restrictions of it, the laser focus of that route made it extra fascinating.”


The saber of sabers.
Picture: Perception Editions/Lucasfilm

Inside that focus although, Wallace discovered one thing quite vital. Whereas a number of of the sabers had hundreds and a great deal of materials on them, from motion pictures and comics to creating of books and extra, lots of the sabers didn’t. In actual fact, some sabers had been solely partially seen as a result of they had been typically lined by a hand in a single comedian panel or two. That created some points however helped the ebook broaden its scope a bit. The write-ups would include details about in-universe mythology in addition to real-world design and background.

“It was a steadiness, nevertheless it was I believe the objective was much less about steadiness between these two components and extra about what’s cool,” Wallace clarified. “Typically it’s in-universe extra, like who designed this and why did they carry it? After which generally it’s extra about type and the glad surprises of constructing one thing.”

For instance, Qui-Gon Jinn’s lightsaber has quotes from Liam Neeson about selecting his saber on the set of The Phantom Menace. Asajj Ventress’ two entries— one from her days as a Padawan and one other as an murderer—have quotes from actress Nika Futterman concerning the character’s motivations. For one thing older and higher recognized, just like the Skywalker saber, there are quotes from set designer Roger Christian concerning the literal constructing of it. And one thing we haven’t seen a lot of, just like the saber of the wookiee Gungi from The Clone Wars, focuses very a lot on the story the place the saber seems, as a result of there isn’t that rather more to inform.


One of many ebook’s newer sabers.
Picture: Perception Editions/Lucasfilm

If the ebook has a web page dedicated to Gungi’s saber in The Clone Wars, in addition to works that aren’t even out but, sure, The Lightsaber Assortment goes deep. Sifo-Diys, Cin Dragllig, cursed sabers of Darth Atrius deep. At one level, there have been even discussions of the sabers followers could make at Savi’s Workshop at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge being included, which they’re, however solely an explanatory chapter on design. Plus, the ebook could be very updated, even together with a number of of the brand new, extra mysterious sabers equivalent to Rey’s and Leia’s from The Rise of Skywalker. For these although, there was solely a lot Wallace may say.

“[The events of the movie] had been all I needed to work with on the time as a result of there undoubtedly is likely to be extra lore to return with that,” Wallace speculated. “But when so, it wouldn’t be the form of stuff that might be spoiled by a ebook like this. It could be tied up within the bigger storytelling venture.” 

A ebook like this, although, is fairly unimaginable by itself. It should please followers of deep Star Wars mythology, in addition to precise Star Wars historical past, all whereas celebrating simply how far the galaxy far, far, away has come. “One factor that I used to be occupied with was I didn’t need it to completely be a prop ebook,” Wallace mentioned. “Star Wars is broader than that. It’s a multimedia saga. And so we wished to incorporate bits of the multimedia.”

You’ll be able to seize a copy of The Lightsaber Collection here.

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Germain Lussier on io9, shared by Kaitlyn Jakola to Gizmodo