Crystal Anne With An E comes to us from a sunny climate, though she is a domestic cat who prefers to remain pale. She is a consultant for autism every day, and recently completed a degree in information science, mainly because she beat and was fun. She enjoys reading (of course), watching TV while sewing something unusual, playing video games, begging her plants not to die in the heat of summer hell, and walking while listening to podcasts that are likely to involve a kind of murder.
No one will ever accuse me of not being loyal to my fans. It has been about 19 years since the final of Buffy the vampire killer was aired, but here I am, dipping my head in a new book about the Slayer line. Ever since that show aired, its creator and writer would continue with great fame with the Marvel Cinematic Universe and it also turned out to be a big shit.
Despite this, Buffy has continued in other media, with many talented creators giving their rounds on the universe that began with its history. That brings us to In every generationn, written by Kendare Blake. My main acquaintance with Blake stems from the fact that I had read it before Anna dressed in blood AND Three Dark Crowns. I knew I liked her style and was interested to see what she would do with it.
Note: this book seems to have absolutely nothing to do with the two Buffy spin-off novels written by Kiersten White, which I have reviewed before. At this point, I just go with the idea that we are probably dealing with an alternative universe. Who knows, maybe this is the World without shrimp. Nor does it seem to have anything to do with what happened in the “Season 8” comics, which to me is not a bad thing (I never admit that Buffy and Angel spent a whole affair sexizing a universe in existence and then destroyed magic). Buffy is a fairly strong property that, like Star Trek and Marvel, I can accept a multiverse.
Buffy manifold? Of course!
One thing these books seem to have in common is that they focus primarily on a new generation, and in none of them have we so far spent any significant time with the OG killer himself. In this case, it means that our main character is Frankie Rosenberg, the daughter of Willow Rosenberg, who becomes the first Slayerwitch. She has inherited her mother’s affinity for magic, and um, Slayer’s inheritance of her mother as well (who is her mother, you ask? That would be obvious).
This was a bit difficult for me because while there were many that I liked, there were also some things that did not seem too buffy to me. One of these was the use of Spike in this story. Honestly, he did not feel much like Spike from the show, even considering the fact that, given the timeline, he would have had his soul for about 20 years. The book introduced a Spike who has beaten his natural impulsiveness and arrogance, which I have often found to be his strengths. He appears to be annoying and a little annoying, which, okay, Spike’s a Watcher now (another plot fabrication I’m not sure I bought, I do not really see Spike wanting to be a Watcher), but still.
It seemed ridiculous to me that one of the points of the plot was that they had to make him look a little older to sell a fiction that he was a British librarian (i.e. Giles’s New Coke version) and so fascinated him, that he takes it personally. . Hey, so now James Marsters could be completely restored if he were to put his white hair and accent back on.
The references to the original show were often ridiculous and effective, with some funny sides to how good we humans are at explaining the strange things that can happen around a Hellmouth.
My favorite was “After the complete destruction of the city in that scary pit incident in the early 2000s, it had remained in mostly good condition.Blake also grabbed some references to other vampire media. I especially liked the vampire that made it clear to dress like Kiefer Sutherland and I felt very valuable when Frankie noticed.
Frankie herself is an interesting character, as she grew up idolizing “Aunt Buffy” and comparing her magical powers to those of her mother, who skated very close to God at the height of her powers. This combination makes Frankie have a pretty good case of deceptive syndrome. She spends much of the book thinking she is not a “real killer” and this sense of self-doubt makes her have considerable difficulty accessing her power and using it effectively.
She has her newborn gang Scooby: the wolf and figure of brother Jake Osbourne (cousin of one Daniel Osbourne), Hailey, the sister of Slayer Vi (one of the Slayers was activated when Willow used Scythe in the Buffy finale) and Sigmund, a demon dear, if somewhat shy, Sage. She is even in love with a nearly 2000-year-old demon with the appearance of a male model and a tendency towards mind-making (her mother is not at all happy with that part). They are all charming in general, and I liked their relationship with each other, especially the sibling dynamics between Frankie and Jake and the sweet and embarrassing romance that was unfolding between Hailey and Sigmund. I particularly liked Sigmund, with his aversion to putting himself in danger (solidarity, my friend) and his powers: he feeds on stupidity, so when he finishes feeding, people are actually sharper than before. It also leads to an effective joke about how Sage demons like to be around constant sources of stupidity, which is why his mother works in government.
All that said, some of the cultural references absolutely did not work because I did not believe current teens would make some of those references. The most prominent, for me, was this:
“Here we go,” she said, and used her phone screen to illuminate a headstone. “First. Robert Palmer.” Like the boy who sings “Simply Irresistible”? Franki asked.
I absolutely called him at the age of fifteen about it and asked him who Robert Palmer was. Let me gif-ify her answer.
Is this a reference that is likely to be easily understood by an OG Buffy fan reading this book? Of course. Is it legitimately a reference I think a current teenager would make? Bloody is unlikely.
The plot is Buffy’s standard, as the book begins with an attack on the Slayer line and follows Frankie’s call, the process of learning her to use her powers, and the inevitable confrontation with an eldritch monster that has been drawn by a closed person. , but still rumble, Hellmouth (can not hold a good Hellmouth down, y’all!). The eldritch monster in question is Elizabeth Bathory herself, and she has come to power. Thinking about it, I’m actually a little surprised we never got her or Carmilla in the original series (I love a scary female vampire and Carmilla was one of the best characters in the Netflix Castlevania series). I liked the arrogance that other vampires do not think Bathory is real, just because they have seen so many other vampires imitating it over the years. You get all the blows of the Buffy plot: the entrance, everyone exploring, a mysterious loner with a connection to the Big Bad and the war that ensued, with a plot in the background of our Scoobies trying to figure out who attacked the Slayers and how many have actually remained. This, I believe, will be the ongoing theme as the series continues.
While the plot is quite effective in achieving the pace we expect from a Buffy universe story, I think I would have liked to see more indications of Frank’s ingenuity; it really manifests only in the end, as she learns to use both of her power groups together to make a symphony of violence, instead of treating them like pans that she is crashing together. After all, yes, Slayers are strong and durable, but the best are smart and agile.
Did I have any problems with it? Yes, OG Buffy fans in me had notes. I think this book will appeal more to fans of the original series, both because of its reliance on inherited characters like Willow and Spike, and because some of the references are more likely to be understood and enjoyed by it. two old schools. Buffy and ahem fans, people of a certain age group (Gen X gets up… or not, we’re very tired). Will I read the others (this seems to be the beginning of a contracted trilogy)? Maybe. I’m curious to see where Frank’s journey goes.