Thursday, 9 September 2010

Book review: The Star Wars Vault

I grew up with some weird stuff. There was the rat skull I salvaged from a trip to a riverbank, a mummified mole we found under a caravan and the rotting cadaver of a woman in a wedding dress. Admittedly the last of those was a figment of my imagination, but none compete with the truly bonkers and very real childhood possession which was my Chewbacca toothbrush. If you think about it, an eight-foot fictional gorilla-star pilot being the basis for something used in dental hygiene is truly a barometer of how bizarre the world is.

I am a child of the 80s and HELL did I love Star Wars. I still do, but at about the age of ten my tastes changed and I got into darker material. The joy I get from Lucas' baby is therefore more to do with reminiscence. Consequently I don't own much in the way of recently-produced Star Wars merchandise. The Star Wars Vault caught my eye though because it is a comprehensive collection of the ephemera that surrounded the films (mainly the original trilogy), from script drafts to comics to themed mugs to Pez dispensers. This is pretty awesome in itself, but the real selling point of this book is that it has amazing high production values. Not only is the printing wonderful (and features metallic inks) many of the things being profiled are reproduced as pull-outs and detachables. Having done quite a bit of design-for-print in my time I can assure you that this thing would have been a costly monster to produce.

I spent a lovely hour last weekend browsing the tome, and I would strongly recommend anyone interested in Star Wars, the 80s, ephemera or just book production pick up a copy.

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