“The Force is not fire, it is venom.” – Book of Sith
With the release of Star Wars: Episode 1 The Phantom Menace 3D just a week away from opening in theatres all over the world, Star Wars mania is rising once again – and it’s about to get even crazier because one of the coolest Star Wars books that I’ve ever seen is about to hit the shelves: Book of Sith by Daniel Wallace and becker&mayer! (in collaboration with Lucasfilm).
But before I discuss the contents of the book, it would be insane not to mention the jaw-droppingly original, out-of-this-world packaging of this product. The book comes in a blood red and black pyramidal holocron which, when opened, emits disharmonious sound and flashing crimson light. Yeah, I’m almost 50 years old but I’ve opened and closed this holocron literally hundreds of times – it’s arguably the most innovatively packaged book that I have ever come across. (Watch the video below for visuals.)
Like The Jedi Path, Book of Sith contains more than a few cool artifacts from the Star Wars universe – a piece of a Sith burial shroud, a Sith crystal, a battle map from the Great Galactic War, a diagram of Palpatine’s master plan, an Empire propaganda poster, and a Sith talisman.
But it’s the contents of the book that will leave fans of characters like Darth Vader, Darth Maul, and Count Dooku, in black bliss. Book of Sith is essentially fragments of ancient dark texts that were thought lost forever. After a preface from Darth Sidious, the book includes a history of the Sith from the Hundred-Year Darkness to the Reign of the Ax to the Clone Wars. Information about Sith Purebloods, Sith hierarchy, weaponry, amulets, and warbeasts is complemented by hand written comments from those who have read these texts, like Yoda, Luke Skywalker, Mace Windu, Asajj Ventress, etc.
My favorite sections were Darth Bane’s Rule of Two, which explored in-depth the philosophy that was the “keystone of the Sith Order for centuries”; and Absolute Power, the manifesto of Darth Sidious that details his new vision of the Sith Order.
Here are just a few examples of what readers can expect to find with the Book of Sith:
• “…everyone wears a mask. When speaking to others, a false persona can charm, seduce, or frighten. A Sith knows that all interactions are masked.”
• “A warrior’s true strength lies not in muscle but in anger.”
• “All beings want to make sense of their reality, but none of them wish to think too deeply. They gravitate towards words that confirm their suspicions.”
I’ve seen some amazing, downright geekalicious Star Wars merchandise out there – authentic lightsabers, Han Solo in Carbonite Chocolate Bars, Darth Vader Dark Side Roast Coffee and Hoth Cocoa, Jedi bath robes, etc. – Book of Sith has to be considered in the conversation as one of the coolest Star Wars products ever made.
Paul Goat Allen has been a full-time book reviewer specializing in genre fiction for the last two decades and has written thousands of reviews for companies like Publishers Weekly, The Chicago Tribune, Kirkus Reviews, and BarnesandNoble.com. He is a member of the National Book Critics Circle.
Keep up with all of my blogs – as well as all of Barnes & Noble’s exclusive reviews, authors interviews, videos, promotions, and more – by following @BNBuzz on Twitter!
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