04. October 2013 · Comments Off on Happy Star Wars Reads Day — With Shakespeare? · Categories: Uncategorized · Tags: , , , , ,
It's the Original Star Wars -- with a twist!

It’s the Original Star Wars — with a twist!

October 5th is “Star Wars Reads Day“. This initiative partners with several publishing companies and involves events throughout the country celebrating Star Wars and literacy. My fellow GeekMom colleague Kay Moore is getting to attend an event at the San Diego Central Library where Ian Doescher’s William Shakespeare’s Star Wars will be read along with a silent viewing of the original (what some of you may call “A New Hope”). That sounds super cool, although I have plans today already.

If you aren’t near one of the events, might I recommend stopping by your favorite bookstore and picking up a copy of William Shakespeare’s Star Wars to enjoy.

I’m not going to cover the plot of this story. If you’re a fan of my blog, you should know I’m a huge Star Wars fan, especially the originals. The latter three (Episodes I-III) don’t appeal to me quite so much.

So I will assume you know the plot of the original Star Wars movie. ‘Nuf said.

But what you probably have yet to realize is Doescher’s ability to convert the story into iambic pentameter and illustrate the book with dozens of woodcut-style scenes from the story. It’s magical how he combines old world and modern storytelling.

The book is set up like a Shakespeare play, complete with a list of characters, settings, and stage directions. The language pays excellent homage to The Bard’s style, with plenty of “hast”s, “doth”s, and “prithee”s.

I read much of Act I aloud to Jacob and Timmy (and our sponsor cadet). I’m afraid their eyes rolled to the back of their heads listening to my overdramatic style of reading, but I was able to introduce a discussion about Shakespeare and iambic pentameter with my boys. I warned them that Shakespeare is coming to an English class near them very very soon and it wouldn’t hurt to study his style with a familiar story.

While I don’t have permission to reproduce the text, you can read the first 20 pages through this excerpt at Boing Boing.

If you get the book, be sure to pay attention to the afterword which explains the special connection between Shakespeare and George Lucas. A fun history.

I had a good time reading William Shakespeare’s Star Wars. The book retails for $14.95 and will make a great gift this holiday season. It’s available at most bookstores and through online retailers such as Amazon.

Disclosure: A complimentary copy of this book was provided by the publisher.