Combine LEGO and Star Wars and you've got my attention, combine both of those with a book and an exclusive minifigure and you've got a winner, right? Well, maybe not. Publisher DK is back with another LEGO Star Wars book, this time exploring the dark side of the force vs the light, the Imperials vs the Rebels and the First order vs the Resistance. And while the premise seems intriguing, the results are a bit of a mess in this reader's opinion.
The book itself is the fine quality we've come to expect from DK. It's got a glossy, sturdy hard cover, with vivid full color printing and prismatic foil lettering. The cover is also die cut with a space to preview the exclusive figure, which is clam shell packed and attached from the back side. This does make the front cover seriously thick though, and a little awkward once the figure is removed. The pages are a quality stock, and the printing is crisp and colorful. The back cover is the same as the front, without the additional spacing for the figure.
The book is organized in into two chapters, the Light Side, and the Dark Side. Under those chapters it's broken down into sections like Lightsabers, Aliens, Astromechs, Villains, Stormtroopers, Bounty Hunters, etc. These sections actually represent a two page spread for each subject, sometimes turned sideways.
The photography, art and renders are quite nice, top quality in fact, and everything is represented in LEGO form, even things like the Death Star, planets and weapons. One thing you will take away from this book is LEGO has a long and rich history of making Star Wars stuff, there's just tons of it. This may actually have contributed to my primary complaint about the book, the scattershot overload of information.
Nearly every page is just plastered with...stuff. Words, pictures, side bars, quotes, exclamations, fun facts, trivia, background information, and on and on. I realize I'm not the primary demographic of this book, by perhaps as much as forty years, but as a huge fan of both Star Wars and LEGO, it seems it should be squarely in my wheelhouse. But it's just a relentless gush of information, page after page of it.
The figure is really nothing to get terribly excited over either. He's Unkar's Brute, a character from The Force Awakens I don't really recognize and am so not excited about that I'm not even going to bother Googling it. It just looks like a dude dressing rags with his head wrapped up except for one eye, meh.
Overall, I'm disappointed with this book. Even if I'm "too old for it" (I will argue that I'm a self admitted man-child) the subject matter alone should be enough for me to like it, but I don't. Of course I'm not a fan of today's rapid-fire, jump-cutriffic media either, and perhaps that's the inspiration behind this. But it's less "high energy" and more "information overload" in my opinion. I give it 2 out of 5 Nerdlys.
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