If you get the feeling that this books title and abundance of authors is trying to compensate for something, you would be right. First and foremost, this is a book written for juniors, DK says 8-12. It would probably be perfect for a 8 year-old boy. But I wanted more. I wanted the mysteries that the movie brought to use at least hinted at. Seeing as the target demographic is 8-12 year-old boys it makes sense that the bulk of the book deals with descriptions of characters, buildings, and droids/robots.
I did learn things I didn’t know before leafing through the pages, so it is a worth while checkout from your library, but unless you have some Star Wars fans that fall in the target age group I wouldn’t purchase this one. Keep to the books for the most part. If you have watched the Clone Wars and are watching Rebels you will already know more that what is in this book. There are only four pages or so in the back of the book that pertain to The Force Awakens, so don’t get this if you think it will reveal more about the movie.
Having said that the pictures are great quality like every DK book and there is a lot of information there.
Star Wars: Before the Awakening is really three stories one for each of the characters on its cover: Finn, Rey and Poe. This is a junior novel. Really written for 12 year-old crowd, but it is a Star Wars book the tells the story of these characters before the movie and my local library had a copy, so my decision was made for me. I grabbed this as soon as it came in. And it already has another person waiting for it. They will get their chance now as I have finished it. I loved this book and gave it four stars. It loses one star for being a little easy, written for children as it is. Maybe I shouldn’t mark it off for that since it is a junior novel, but thats just the way I am. 5 stars is perfection after all.
In this novel we find go along with Finn through some of this training and on his first real mission. I had thought the one we saw in the movie was his first, but not so. Rey’s story I don’t want to tell you about. It concerns her scavenger life before the movie. Her story is so excellent, its actually the reason I gave the book 4 stars instead of 5. I loved her story so much, I thought there was more the author could have done with it. Poe’s story is also good. The second best story in the book after Rey’s of course. In it Poe meets general Leia Organa Solo for the first time and goes on a very thrilling mission. If you are a Star Wars fan, young or old, you will enjoy this book!
Incredible cross-sections is a beautiful book! Not only are all the images “incredible”, but there are short articles on every page. The articles tell you a little about each vehicle. For example, did you know that Rey built that speeder herself? Even Han’s new freighter is in this book and so are the Rathtars.
I am very glad that my library had this book. But honestly, if my kids were a little more into Star Wars I would not hesitate to buy this for $20. As it is, I don’t have the room for this and I’d be the only one looking at it. Click on the image above to see a larger version. Can you find Finn?