Star Wars: From a Certain Point of View – Review
By Roger Crow
Thanks to some nice publishers I get sent a lot of Star Wars books. Beautiful hardbacks; glorious dust covers, and some terrific stories inspired by events in new video game Battlefront II, or Phasma, the Amazonian silver stormtrooper from The Force Awakens and pending movie The Last Jedi. But occasionally I tire of doorstop tomes and prefer short stories. The variety pack cereal mentality if you like, which means you’re only ever a few pages from another tale if the current one doesn’t appeal.
That’s part of the brilliance of Star Wars: From a Certain Point of View, a new collection of 40 stories celebrating four decades of Star Wars.
And with 40 different authors involved, including Star Trek: The Next Generation and Big Bang Theory veteran Wil Wheaton, there’s plenty of variety.
“Enhances the existing films”
I’d been waiting years for a film to bridge the gap between the (awful) prequels and the original Star Wars: A New Hope, so when Rogue One was released in 2016, that itch was finally scratched. And the opener of this collection adds colour to events between the two movies from the point of view of the rebel officer who memorably gets choked at the start of Episode IV, and the rookie stormtrooper who helps apprehend Princess Leia minutes later.
One of the strongest stories involves clerical gymnastics attached to the gunner who failed to destroy the escape pod which ferried Artoo Deetoo and See Threepio to Tatooine.
There’s so much mileage for a TV series of five or 10-minute shorts, I can see a few of these tales being adapted for an animated saga. I’d also like to see a short story examining the guilt felt by Sebulba, the pod racer who could have been the hero of the universe if he’d succeeded in killing young Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader during the race in The Phantom Menace. Or a tale in which the mouse droid from A New Hope plays a key part in the Death Star’s destruction by distracting the primary weapon operator at a crucial time before he obliterates Yavin.
The Star Wars saga might tackle huge things on a galactic scale, but it’s often those little, personal events which make the series come alive. And also enhances the existing films.
“A great read”
I’ve never read a Star Wars tale from the point of view of a Jawa, and now I’ll not be able to watch A New Hope without thinking of Jot, the protagonist behind one of the early stories in From a Certain Point of View.
This variety pack involving one of my favourite serials is a great read thanks to 40 great authors orbiting around George Lucas’s evergreen creation, each offering a fascinating take on that galaxy far, far away.
Like a certain stormtrooper’s blaster at the start of Episode IV, this collection is set to stun.
‘Star Wars: From a Certain Point of View ‘ is published by Century, £20