Comics, and Bookstores, and Star Wars… Oh My!

This past handful of days have probably been the geekiest all year. Saturday was not only the anniversary of the Battle of Hogwarts, but Free Comic Book Day as well as Indie Bookstore Day. Today, if you don’t already know, is May the Fourth Be With You, or Star Wars Day. What I love about all of these holidays is that they involve literacy! Although typically Star Wars Day requires a movie marathon of some sort (I will be watching Clone Wars for the first time ever after work), I don’t think it’s unreasonable to rule out a book marathon either! Here’s my take on all three of these marvelous holidays:

imageIndependent Bookstore Day– I didn’t even know this was a thing until David Levithan posted about it. I do think it should get more press, and everyone should just choose indie booksellers every day. I also think comic book stores totally count, so if you shelled out some cash on Saturday while you were picking up your free comics, you’re good. Can’t get to an indie bookstore? Many of them have websites and will happily ship you their books. Leigh Woznick, who has contributed for Daily Geekette, wrote a wonderful piece on favorite indie bookstores, including the favorites from some familiar names in world of literature (including yours truly).

Free Comic Book Day– This was my first year participating in this annual tradition, and I was floored by the equality and diversity at the store. There were quite a few parents who brought their daughters. I would say there were just as many women as men in the store. Every imaginable age group was represented. There were several infants, and a plethora of children, teenagers in costumes, young adults, parents, and even grandparents bringing in their grandchildren. I was floored. The one disappointment of the day were the free comics themselves: Sonic, Doctor Who, The Tick, and Fight Club were some of the more popular titles available, all disappointingly featuring a man, and except for the hedgehog, all of them are Caucasian. The people are finally showing up, and are still not getting the representation they deserve. Please let me know if diverse, feminist comics were offered in your shop! I’m really curious to know if anyone had similar or different experiences!

imageStar Wars Day– There is probably more Star Wars reading material available today than ever before. There is a Princess Leia comic, a Darth Vader comic, and a prequel comic to Star Wars: Rebels, which I picked up on Saturday, giving Kanan a backstory. My favorite Star Wars literature, which is supposedly intended for children, is the Origami Yoda series by Tom Angleberger. I read it to my 6th graders a few months ago, and will be starting Darth Paper Strikes Back with them today. The story is of a strange kid with a Yoda finger puppet who gives advice. The rest of the kids in his school want to know if it’s really magic, so they compile stories of Yoda’s advice. It is cute and funny and full of Star Wars immersion in mainstream society. Your library probably has several copies, so you should go out and get one! OR pick one up from your local independent bookseller.

I hope your Star Wars day is full of New Hope, and that you have loads of fun!

Let me know in the comments what you did or plan on doing to celebrate these nerdy holidays! And may the Force be with you!

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