Well, after it didn't come from B&N on time an exciting trek into our nation's capitol located me a copy of the Wing Commander Confederation Handbook... here's what I thought! (Be warned, this review may contain SPOILERS).
The Good: Ask anybody, they'll tell you that one of the coolest things about Wing Commander has always been the cool in-depth manuals - WC1 had it's Claw Marks, WC3 had Victory Streak and so on. The Confederation Handbook is essentially a manual for the Wing Commander Movie - and it's got to be the most beautiful manual ever. Full of color and wonderful graphics, this book does an excellent job of explaining a lot of things WC fans have been wondering about: the pre-war history, the ships of the movie, character backgrounds, etc. The format is great, designed as if someone were browsing an online service (complete with banner ads). It also has all the stuff fans of the more popular sci fi series' have grown accustomed to: deck plans, nose art, scientific papers explaining the history and principles of jump technology -- basically any cool stuff they could cram into it.
The Bad: You may or may not be familiar with the fact that I'm a stickler for continuity (also, an inside joke). This book at times either delights me or infuriates me. It has the most obscure references, and then it changes some of the most obvious. For example, a letter from Blair's Academy instructor to the XO of the Tiger's Claw actually mentions the events from Red & Blue [Ed: the first Wing Commander Academy episode]... but then the book changes the date of the beggining of the Kilrathi war by some nine years. Its ship specifications are also a bit odd - while Peter Telep's WC novel stuck to the traditional WC specs (for the Concordia, for instance), the handbook creates new ones. It's actually not that bad, though, and shouldn't ruin your enjoyment of the book - hell, after a long chat with Crid last night, I'm all ready to explain all the changes during the sure-to-follow arguments in agwc.
Extra: What else could it possibly have? One odd note - why is it that the only pilot who's fighter has a scantily clad woman painted on its nose is Angel? You have to wonder...