Thursday, February 17, 2011


The Wookiee Storybook is a 1979 Star Wars children’s book featuring characters and events from the infamous 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special. The book is illustrated by Patricia Wynne; no author is credited. Here, Chewbacca returns to his home world for his two-hundredth birthday while his son “Lumpy” gets lost in the swamp.

This is, basically, a story you’ve heard before, told in a completely pedestrian manner, only Star Wars-ified: a kid wants to be a hero, disobeys his mother and goes into danger, gets rescued, and learns that “Even when you were afraid, you kept trying. That is what makes a hero.” Whatever. It’s also weird to see Wookiees speaking intelligible dialogue.

The only “real” Star Wars characters here are Chewbacca and Han Solo, and Han doesn’t have much to do (although there is a brief but interesting mention of how they met and became partners). But is it canon? Who cares? (Okay, it’s probably not, what with the Wookiee telepathy and the Millennium Falcon’s rocket shuttle and convenient “super-sensitive tracking camera.”)

Wynne’s full-color artwork is quite good. She does an excellent job with the characters, and her attention to detail in the backgrounds is particularly impressive, as is her vision of Kashyyyk. Her art is the highlight of the book.

I love Star Wars, love Chewbacca, love Han Solo, but The Wookiee Storybook is really for collectors only.