A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Star Wars: Return of the Jedi, Beware the Power of the Dark Side! is a meticulous (almost frame-by-frame) retelling of Episode 6 of the film series. Tom Angleberger, author of the Origami Yoda series, provides color and black-and-white illustrations and a sly narrative voice that fosters a stronger connection to the narrative. (This is the third in a series of novelizations of the Star Wars films written by various children's-book authors.) The story is full of sci-fi action, including lightsaber fights, space attacks, and the strangling of a major villain, but there is little actual bloodshed described. Sexual content is limited to the deepening romantic relationship between Han Solo and Princess Leia.
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What's the story?
As this installment in the Star Wars saga opens, the Rebel Alliance is in disarray while the Empire builds a new, more powerful Death Star. Robots R2-D2 and C-3PO make their way to the hideout of the disgustingly villainous Jabba the Hutt to negotiate for the release of Han Solo and Princess Leia. But it takes the intervention of Luke Skywalker to rescue them, and soon our heroes face even graver dangers. As Han and Leia complete a secret mission on the planet Endor, Luke must prepare himself to face his greatest foe: his father, Darth Vader.
Is it any good?
For readers eager for every last detail about the sixth installment of the movie saga, this extended retelling provides plenty of nuance and fresh information. In STAR WARS: RETURN OF THE JEDI, BEWARE THE POWER OF THE DARK SIDE!, author Tom Angleberger uses a sly, knowing tone that establishes a stronger connection with his young readers, and his illustrations set the scenes wonderfully. But if readers have watched Return of the Jedi many times already, they won't find any major surprises here.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about why science fiction is so popular across so many different media. What about the genre most appeals to audiences?
Why are fear and hatred so destructive? How can one learn to turn away from them?
Can people -- even the worst villain -- change for the better?
- Author: Tom Angleberger
- Illustrator: Tom Angleberger
- Genre: Science Fiction
- Topics: Princesses, Fairies, Mermaids, and More, Adventures, Misfits and Underdogs, Robots, Space and Aliens
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: Disney Lucasfilm Press
- Publication date: September 22, 2015
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 8 - 12
- Number of pages: 432
- Available on: Nook, Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
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