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Thrawn trilogy to be reprinted with new covers

28th July 2016 (UPDATED 29th August 2016) |
Jedi-Bibliothek.de has uncovered the new covers, by Rich Kelly, which when joined together form one single motif, on the online publishers catalogue edelweiss:

 Jedi-Bibliothek.de discovered that the entry on the online publishers catalogue edelweiss for Timothy Zahn's new Thrawn novel, as announced at Celebration Europe, contained a sidebar showing that Del Rey are planning to reprint paperback editions of Zahn's original Thrawn trilogy novels, Heir to the Empire, Dark Force Rising and The Last Command with new cover art on 27th September. The sidebar entry has now been removed but Jedi-Bibliothek managed to grab a screenshot of the description (highlighted text):

At present there are no further details regarding the choice of artist or art that will adorn the reprints.

Heir to the Empire was first released in paperback in the US in 1992 (a year after the hardback release in 1991) and Tom Jung's original art has continued to grace over 55 reprints. To date only minor changes have been made to the paperback's cover (original paperback had an embossed Star Wars logo, subsequent reprints didn't; changes in typeface; etc) with the most recent reprints adding the Legends banner - but all retained Jung's distinctive art:

US paperback reprints of Dark Force Rising and The Last Command have gone through similar changes, but as with Heir to the Empire, have also retained Tom Jung's original art:

Given the excitement regarding the return of both Zahn and Thrawn to the Star Wars galaxy, a reissue of Zahn's original Thrawn trilogy was inevitable. However, it should be noted that in publishers terms a new cover does not warrant a new edition - changes to the story's text constitute a new edition, such as the hardback 20th Anniversary edition of Heir to the Empire released in 2011 which included Zahn's own annotation notes - a change of cover is still termed a reprint. Thus the new cover reprints are likely to have the same ISBN as the original Tom Jung covers.
This means that retailers, in particular online, while possibly listing the titles "with new cover art" cannot differentiate between the original cover art version and the new cover art version and if they still have stock of the original cover will ship that version until their stocks are exhausted and the publisher resupplies them with stock with the new cover art. This issue occured back in 2011 and 2012 when Del Rey reprinted paperback editions of Darth Maul: Shadow Hunter by Michael Reeves and The Phantom Menace by Terry Brooks in which both books had not only new covers but each had an exclusive short story by James Luceno. For a while online retailers were still shipping the older paperback versions, those without the short stories, because the new versions had the same ISBN as the old version.
Our advice to readers looking to buy editions with the new cover art should purchase where they can actually see the physical copy, ie from a traditional retailer, or if online where the retailer can offer a guarantee that they will supply versions with the new cover art or refund your monies if they can not.

Source: via Jedi-Bibliothek

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