If you’re viewing this anytime after this week, I’m sorry. But hey, you get a review, right?

Audible.com is running a sale on the first books of series. There are several good choices, all for $4.95 each, but I didn’t go through the whole thing yet. I got distracted by William Shakespeare’s Star Wars: Verily, a New Hope

This was an interesting coincidence. Sure, I’d known about it for years, and always meant to pick up a copy. That’s nothing new. The coincidence was that I had just done a lecture on Shakespeare for the Inkstains Writing Club at Christendom College this past Saturday. It’s one of my favorite presentations, where I let myself go light on the writing side and mostly just geek out over Shakespeare.

Had I known that Ian Doescher had so accurately adapted Shakespeare’s style — with near-perfect imitations of the Bard’s use of iambic pentameter, including partial-line timing as well as full sonnets — combined with such gentle and delightful satire of both his sources, I’d have used this book in my lecture. As it is, I’m going to start recommending it to help interest readers in Shakespeare.

The audio version was excellent. Doescher doesn’t delve into so much Elizabethan vocabulary to make the action incomprehensible; and the small amount he put in is almost self-explanatory to anyone who has ever seen Star Wars. The voice acting is particularly good, and my one and only complaint there is the same that I have with most productions of Shakespeare plays — namely, that the characters enunciate a little too much, because while Shakespeare used poetic meter, that doesn’t mean you’re supposed to savor each syllable. Actually, the whole point is to go through it quickly. There’s a reason why the prologue to Romeo & Juliet refers to “the two hours’ traffic of our stage.” It’s actually fairly fast-paced.

Of course, if this had been performed at proper speed, it would have been over in barely more time than the movie itself, so I’m not complaining too much. After all, I was disappointed when it was over!

I highly recommend getting this book if you like Star Wars, Shakespeare, or both. Especially both. Got geeky kids you want to get into Shakespeare? Get this book. Got bookish parents you want to get interested in Star Wars? Get this book. Already have a geeky bookish family? Get it anyway and enjoy it together.

And always, unto the end of the age,
May the Force be with thee, on ev’ry new page.