Top critical review
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Well researched, badly written.
on 29 December 2014
Let's start with the positive: it's very well researched. Impressively so, in fact. The information in this book gives a real insight into George Lucas' creative process and how events changed and crafted the saga we know to day. If this was a review of research this would be a 5-star review.
But it's written terribly.
Grammatically it's okay. There are a few misused words here and there and sometimes sentences are structured to sound intellectual without good reason. The main issue is repetitiveness. And my god, how this guy loves to repeat information. Regularly he'll repeat the same information many times in the same chapter, always presenting it like its the first time it's features in the book. Sometimes this even happens in the same paragraph and on one occasion thus far it's happened in the same sentence. This has made the book a major chore to read. I'm constantly checking to make sure I haven't the page I'm on before. I'm currently a third of the way through the book and I'm finding the will to carry on is waning with each page. It really could do with a solid edit. A good editor could easily shave 100 - 200 pages from this.
Also, it's unclear whether the writer has and agenda or is trying to present an unbalanced viewpoint on the subject. Regularly he praises and condemns George Lucas for exactly the same reasons. One second he's the great myth builder, the next the great deceiver, taking the piss out of his audience. Kaminski looks for arguments where there's none, and twists facts to suit points he's trying to make. If evidence is contradictory he highlights this exclusively as an example of deception rather than it being a possible truth of the time. It's almost a condemnation of Star Wars' evolution from serial homage to epic, and even at one pint criticises Lucas' use of serial tropes to exploit audiences emotions with the first film in '77. I don't get it.
I'll revisit this review when I finally finish this thing but currently: 5 stars for research 1 star for writing.