The Star Wars Essential Legends Collection matters more than you think

Did you know Star Wars books have been around since Star Wars first began? The original novelization of Star Wars (before it was called A New Hope) was only the beginning. For over 40 years, writers have been telling stories set in a galaxy far, far away for fans of all ages. Just because some of those stories are now called “legends” doesn’t mean they don’t still matter.

Del Rey just announced the next wave of Essential Legends Collection books — re-releases of some of the most beloved Star Wars books published prior to 2014 with brand-new cover art. Though the content between the two new covers is the same as the originals, these books truly are “essential” to the future of Star Wars readers.

It may have been a long time since you read one of the “classic” Star Wars books. Well, thanks to the Kenobi reprint, you can grab yourself a new copy and reread it just in time for Obi-Wan Kenobi‘s May 27 premiere. For you, perhaps it’s a reminder that these books exist and are still as good as you remember.

Even someone who grew up only reading the occasional Star Wars book when they were still part of the “Expanded Universe” might be discovering some of these titles for the very first time because of the attention they’re getting as re-releases, as well as some of the new unabridged audiobooks being recorded and released for the very first time.

And even if you can’t afford to grab copies for yourself, just knowing the books are out there (and allowing these gorgeous new covers to remind you) might prompt you to seek out used copies at a local bookstore or your town’s library.

The point of these re-releases isn’t just to sell more books — it’s also to increase awareness of great Star Wars stories fans may have missed or haven’t revisited in a long time.

Contrary to what some Star Wars fans might tell you, reading is not dead (and for the record, neither is Star Wars). More people are discovering Star Wars through reading every single year thanks to new stories like The High Republic.

Star Wars books are filled with the most diverse and in-depth characters and storytelling Star Wars has ever released. The more fans that experience the books, the more stories writers can continue telling for generations to come.

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