Published on February 8th, 2016 | by Carli Spina

Adding Star Wars to Your Comic Collection

Even if you aren’t a Star Wars fan, you have likely noticed that Star Wars: The Force Awakens has revitalized the Star Wars fandom in recent weeks. Given its great popularity, and the fact that there will be another movie set in the same universe released next December, now is the perfect time to add some Star Wars flavor to your library’s graphic novel collection. Fortunately, the recently released Star Wars graphic novels offer a little something for everyone in terms of both artwork and storytelling. Below is a brief look at some recent comics that would be a great addition to virtually any library’s collection.

shatteredStar Wars: Shattered Empire – If you are going to add only one book from this list to your collection, this should be it. Written by Greg Rucka, not only does this volume provide details of the events that take place after the Battle of Endor at the end of Return of the Jedi, but it also provides some backstory for Poe Dameron, one of the main characters of The Force Awakens. The artwork does a nice job of conveying action sequences and the cast is diverse. The volume also includes a reprint of a Star Wars comic by Stan Lee from 1977 and a peak at the new Princess Leia series.

Princess Leia: Volume 1 – This book is perfect for Princess Leia fans of all ages. Set leiashortly after the Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, the series follows Princess Leia as she strikes out across the galaxy to save the remaining citizens of Alderaan. Mark Waid captures Leia’s voice well and Terry Dodson’s artwork brings a great deal of style to the story. They introduce new allies for Leia, including Evaan Verlaine, a human female who serves as her pilot throughout the story. This is a fun read that is approachable even for readers who do not typically read comics.

vaderDarth Vader: Volume 1 – Another, albeit very different, option is this series that focuses on Darth Vader. Written by Kieron Gillen, the author of Phonogram and Wicked + Divine, this story is packed with action sequences and fills in gaps in what fans know about Darth Vader’s actions during the original Star Wars trilogy. Fittingly, Salvador Larroca’s artwork for this story is darker than the other Star Wars comics series. This is a great option for fans of action-oriented comics.

Skywalker Strikes: Volume 1 – Set a while after Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope, this skywalkerstory is structured like a heist story, and has a nice combination of plot and action. The characterizations are true to the original Star Wars trilogy and there is plenty for Han, Luke, Leia, Chewie, C-3PO and R2-D2 to do. Though this is technically a first volume, it works particularly well as a standalone volume.

landoLando – Written for everyone who has ever wanted to know more about Lando Calrissian’s past, this book fills in some much needed information about one of the most popular characters from the original trilogy. The book is created by the all-star team of Charles Soule and Alex Maleev, which will give it a broad appeal. It will be a sure fire hit for Lando’s fans, but also for those who enjoyed Soule’s work on She-Hulk and Death of Wolverine.

Chewbacca – Have you ever wondered what Chewie got up to when Han wasn’t around? chewbaccaIn this story, readers follow the Wookie as he heads off on a job of his own – only to crash land and end up with a very different mission indeed. When he runs into a teen girl who is desperately in need of help, how can he say no? Particularly since she won’t let him. Pulled into saving her father and friends from the clutches of an imperial collaborator, Chewie gets far more than he bargained for. The story by Gerry Duggan works perfectly with Phil Noto’s artwork to bring this story to life while still offering its fair share of laughs along the way. This volume won’t be released until March, but it is well worth taking a look at when it comes out.

Poe Dameron – Though this series isn’t out yet, it is definitely worth keeping an eye on and recommending to patrons who are looking for recommendations of new comics. Written by Charles Soule (who created the Lando series) and featuring artwork by Phil Noto (who created the art for Chewbacca), this series will follow rebel pilot Poe Dameron’s exploits prior to The Force Awakens. The series is set to debut in April.

Hopefully you will find something here to satisfy the Star Wars fans among your patrons! These are all great reads and all work well as standalone series too. In addition, though this post concentrates on comics, in the lead up to the release of Star Wars: The Force Awakens a number of other tie-in books have been published. With options for middle grade, young adult, and adult readers, as well as a number of books focusing on the art and design of Star Wars, these are well worth adding to your library’s collection.



About the Author

Carli Spina is an emerging technologies and research librarian at an academic library. She is a big fan of graphic novels, young adult and children's literature, and popular culture and writes about these topics for several blogs including the Horn Book's Lolly's Classroom blog and YALSA's The Hub blog. You can find her on Twitter as @CarliSpina or on her website at

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