“It’s just a book about kids who love Star Wars and origami and goofing around and all that stuff, and Origami Yoda has been helping them with various problems throughout the book,” Angleberger said.
But Angleberger said that in “Princess Labelmaker to the Rescue!,” Princess Leia takes the main stage, becoming the only hope for the kids. Due to the origami twist, Princess Leia becomes Princess Labelmaker, a character who sends secret messages throughout the school with her labelmaker.
Angleberger’s process for his books includes writing the story, creating the origami character for the front cover, illustrating the book and writing instructions for the reader to create his or her own Star Wars origami character.
Although Angleberger is not a local author, Flyleaf Books jumped on the chance to host the Virginia native because of his passion for fun and his regard for the unexpected.
“I think with a lot of literary events, you expect them to be quiet and contemplative and really more of a library-type setting,” said Linnie Greene, marketing manager for Flyleaf. “With Tom Angleberger, it’s really never like that.”
Angleberger’s devotion to the New York Times best-selling series not only has the approval of booksellers, but of Lucas Films, which partners with Abrams Books publishing company to promote the series to the larger Star Wars fan base, using the Star Wars website, fan forums and the Star Wars Insider Magazine.
“Lucas (Films) has been a big supporter of the series from the beginning,” said Susan Van Metre, senior vice president and publisher for Abrams Books For Young Readers.
Despite the huge success of the series, Angleberger’s goal remains simple: teach kids the techniques of origami in a way that’s fun for everyone.
“It’s been amazing. The kids — I call them the SuperFolders — as soon as they finish the books they start folding and they fold Origami Yoda, but then they fold their own stuff. Then they want to take a picture of it and send it to me, so I have thousands and thousands of pictures of origami,” he said.
“I love hearing from these kids and seeing the stuff they’ve done, starting with the same idea that I started with — just combining origami and Star Wars.”