May the Fourth Be With Thee! A Dose of Star Wars… Shakespeare-Style

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Author Ian Doescher is at it again — he released his latest book back in March, The Empire Striketh Back, a retelling of what is considered by most fans to be the best of the first three Star Wars movies… but written as if Shakespeare had been the scriptwriter. The obvious follow-up to his Star Wars: Verily A New Hope, the book features dozens of scratchboard illustrations including another amazing cover — this one with Yoda.

Luke

You can read my original review of the first book here, and if you’re looking for some samples from the latest book, try out these cool twists on some otherwise familiar dialogue:

Leia: I know not whence thy great delusions come,
Thou laser brain.

Han: Aye, laugh indeed, thou fuzzball large. But thou
Hast not seen us alone i’ th’passage south,
Where she did unto me unspool, in full,
Her feelings true of fondest love for me.

Leia: My feelings? O! Thou arrogant half-wit,
Thou oversized chil, thou friend of slime,
Thou man of scruffy looks, thou who herd’s nerfs,
Thou fool-born wimpled roughhewn waste of flesh!

Han: What scruffy? Scruffy, how? Whose scruffiness?

An interesting Afterword explains how Doescher solved the problem of Yoda’s speech patterns; how exactly would this ancient Jedi sound if Shakespeare took a turn? Try this one out:

Luke: I know now thou dost ask th’impossible. [Luke sits aside, as Yoda lifts his hands.]

Yoda: Be mindful, young one,
And watch what inner strength great
May come from small size. {Yoda moves the ship out of the swamp using the Force.]

Luke: The ship! It cometh out — thou has done it!
I ne’er imagin’d it was possible.

Yoda: Thus is your error.
Against the Force you do rail.
That is why you fail.

 

If you enjoy both books, you’ll be happy to know you don’t have to wait years for the final volume, The Jedi Doth Return. The next book is due out in July 2014 from Quirk Books, and I think it has to have my absolute favorite cover — take a look:

Jedi Doth Return

The books are small, less than 200 pages each, and could be a useful way to introduce younger readers to Shakespeare without dropping them right into King Lear or Macbeth. (That said, I’m not letting my children anywhere near my copies that have a cherished spot on my bookshelves.)

May the Fourth Be With You!

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