Friday, December 4, 2015

Star Wars: The Dark Side of the Mind

Like many Star Wars fans, I can't get enough to read about the Star Wars "Universe". "Star Wars Psychology: Dark Side of the Mind" struck two interests of mine, so buying this was a given. Let me say from the start, this book will not appeal to every Star Wars fan.

I usually tear through books, but this one was not an easy read as I had thought. Even though I had interests in both topics, this book reminded me of many of the books I had to read when I was a Psych major. (I did change my major a couple of times.)

Perhaps my two favorite chapters were 'A Symphony of Psychology', by Jim Davies and Joe Kraemer, and 'Shooting, Striking, Returning: The Universe in Our Heads' by Donald F. Glut and Travis Langley were probably my two favorite chapters. The former inspired me to reread that chapter while listening to the music cited. The latter dealt not only with the novelization of 'The Empire Strikes Back', but something deeper that every Star Wars fan (and fans of other franchises) dealt with the unique perspective every fan experiences.

I couldn't give this book a five-star rating. As I said it wasn't an easy read, but it didn't help that this book was rife with typos and facts that would make Star Wars fans cringe.

At first I noticed some facts that were inaccurate, like Obi-Wan's duel with Anakin took place on Coruscant instead of Mustafar, or calling Obi-Wan 'Ben' in the prequels (That fact can be debated). But as I kept reading, I noticed more and more typos and font irregularities. These should have been caught in the proofreading stage, because some are very evident.

I want a Yoda Swatch!
This reminds of compound words like 'insofar' or 'notwithstanding. It's like what the Germans do with their words: they Lego words. For example, lebensabschnittgefährter (partner), Löschwassereinspeisung (fire hydrant) or Geschwindigkeitsbegrenzung (speed limit).
What this tells me is they rushed to get this book out quickly before 'The Force Awakens' hits the theatres so they can capitalize on the desire for more products.

Everything considered, I would recommend this book more to readers who are interested in psychology who happen to be Star Wars fans instead of the other way around.


Travis Langley said...

I don't normally comment on reviews because your thoughts are your thoughts, and I welcome them.

The things about the typos and font irregularities is driving me crazy, though. After four years of our developing the book Star Wars Psychology, some computer glitch introduced the problem you're talking about very late in the production process, AFTER we'd gotten all of those things right. That's why you see things like words running together even though we'd already done spellchecks. Sigh.

Thank you for posting a couple of the ones you found because that helps with the correction list I'm putting together for reprints. It still infuriates me that this happened at all. I love working with this publishing company and I have built up such a great team of contributors. We've emphasized that we have to determine the cause of that glitch before this book get reprinted or because more books come out next year.

Thank you, also, for taking the time to read and review the book. I'm glad you found plenty of worthwhile content.

Please feel free to message me on Twitter or Facebook because I'd like to run something by you.


Dr. Travis Langley

Timon said...

Dr. Langley,

Sorry about the delay with my reply, but thank you very much for your insights. I know what it's like to labor over a project and have others critique your work. And nothing is more frustrating when technology doesn't work as it should.

Typically I share books I've read with others, because I don't have room to keep every one I read. However, your book is one worth keeping and I know I'll go back to it. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and your labor of love with us!