I've had my hands on this book for a few weeks now and while I had the opportunity to flick through it quickly when I first got it it's taken till now for me to be able to sit down and give it my full attention.
To start, it is a very nicely presented book the same size as the "Art Of..." series of books that have been released for each of the Marvel movies which is great for anyone collecting those, but rather than simply being an art book Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 1 Declassified is much more.
The book comes in a nice slip case with the main title logo on the front and the S.H.I.E.L.D./Hydra logo from one of the "Art of the Level 7" posters on the back. The design and layout of the book itself fits well with the look and feel of the show.
In addition to art work and photography featured throughout, the book is jam packed full of interesting information about the series. There are profiles on each of the characters, details of various technology featured in the show, information about each episode, show history, music, crew profiles and more!
Each episode has a feature that spans several pages and includes basic details, a "Mission Briefing" summary, "Field-Op Notes" which include interesting trivia like connections with comic roots and "Running Behavioral Observations". Writer of the book Troy Benjamin takes readers on a journey through each episode and includes discussion with cast and crew and covers topics like writing, comic tie ins, visual effects and set building.
One of the features I really appreciate is the profiles for behind the scenes crew. The crew working behind the scenes rarely get the recognition they deserve so it's nice to learn about those working behind the camera including people in the fields of makeup, casting, sound, scripts, stunts and so on.
I had high expectations for this book from the moment I heard about it but I'm delighted to say its more detailed and interesting than I had anticipated and a thoroughly enjoyable read. There sheer volume of information in this book will keep readers engaged for hours, this is definitely a must have for any fan of the show. I look forward with anticipation to Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Declassified books for the coming seasons!
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 1 Declassified is a 240 page large format book written by Troy Benjamin and designed by Nelson Ribeiro with cover art by Geoffrey Mandel.
Additional Note: While I can't compare it to the earlier "Art of" books, I have taken a look at the Art of Captain America The Winter Soldier and I was very disappointed with the overall quality of that book. Many of the images were dark and some of them were surprisingly poor quality. I didn't find this issue with any of the content in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Season 1 Declassified.