I was on vacation this week, so I finally knocked off another Buffy book. It was slow going. I think my German is getting worse!
Elf vampires and fairy vampires looking for vengeance on a vengeance demon. You know it could get ugly!
It doesn’t. The story takes forever to go nowhere.
This is not one of the better stories. It had potential because it started with an interesting idea. The author never developed the plot. It was cardboard.
There is one fun quote:
»Verdammtes Ungeziefer« … »Kann man nicht mal bekämpfen, ohne schwul auszusehen!«
“damn bugs… Can not even fight it without looking gay”
I’m not even going to discuss the Xander and donut issue!
The German wasn’t dreadful, I got through the book.
Lets examine the goodies in this book. We have a television psychic who performs with an almost game show feel. Other dimension bone collecting demons with portals to those places. Willow honing the whole witchcraft thing. Total Immersion virtual reality video games, think Last Starfighter but with demons. Reference to a Voodoo ritual and a Loa.
Add in the slayer family angle with the Dawn issue. Buffy isn’t her mother but is trying to protect her. Dawn is as easy going and laid back as Buffy. You know that isn’t going to be a pretty picture.
This isn’t a particularly good story but it isn’t one of the worst. Nothing exceptional happens.
Note: Google.com translates “Mörderisches Spiel” as “Suspicion”. http://www.freetranslation.com/ translates it as “Murderous Game”. I translate it as “Murderous Play”. I was stunned to find out that this translation threw a monkey wrench into the works. One of the above translations is correct.
I decided to break the translation tie by looking into the name of the English version of the novel. Oops, I don’t think the original title “Crossings” really helps. For what it is worth, the English title fits the story line perfectly. Murderous Game fits nicely and Murderous Play fits almost as well. Suspicion doesn’t really work at all.
Who thought a Buffy book could be such a challenge!
My German doesn’t seem to be getting much better. I had the Google translation service burning up the bandwidth with this book!
Anya was a key character in this one. Her fear of death is explored nicely. The whole concept of an endless life of evil or a much shorter one as a mortal is front and center.
A nasty piece of work that may or may not be a vampire keeps Buffy on her toes. This character gets more interesting as the story develops. This character’s background story adds some fascinating texture to the plot.
Dawn’s involvement with a spell ritual is also nicely done. The interaction between the three characters in the ritual was enlightening.
This was one of the more enjoyable Buffy books. The author put some effort and thought into it. The action flowed nicely and the characters had some depth.
The plot is simple. The half-blood child of a demon has to decide whether to go with the human side or go with the demon side.
Giles, Willow, and Xander have a tiny amount of dialog. Most of the story revolves around the half-demon and Buffy’s sister. Spike wanders in and out of the story.
This is not an exciting story. The plot is okay. The pacing is a bit slow.
“The Pact with Evil”
My German is terrible so, as usual, I may have missed a whole bunch of details!
A few interesting tidbits;
Rome between 39 and 40 A.D.
The goddess Meter
A school shooting
Okay, this one was a little different from the rest!
The plot was messed up. I think the writer had a decent idea, but it got lost somewhere. The bad guys didn’t add up. The story seemed a bit disjointed and glossed over the good stuff. Whenever a slayer from the past is shown, there should be something added to the Slayer mythology. Tossing one in for some weak back-story is lame.
Not one of the better stories, but not from a lack of effort.
The German words in this story were not horribly difficult to figure out.
I don’t like the format. It is written as a series of shorts tied together. It is also almost exactly what was on television. Either I am missing a lot, possible because my German is garbage, or the author didn’t do much work.
I did not really see much in the way of additional content. As far as I am concerned, the books should ALWAYS add meaning and or depth to the story line…
In this case, the book tried to pick highlights of the Faith/Buffy interactions. The scenes chosen were not bad but the writing didn’t add anything.
This book was a disappointment.
I did pick up one useful German phrase: “Wir sind umzingelt!” Translated to English: “We are surrounded!” You never know when it will be needed.
I used Google translate a lot with this one. If my German reading skills are improving, they are doing so in a PAINFULLY slow manner!
Dinosaurs? Yes. Vampires? Only Angel. Massive number of kills? No, not really.
The components for a decent story were available but they were never put together in a way that worked. The writing wasn’t anything to celebrate either.
The Buffy character went through the motions. Xander and Willow were just stuffed into the plot in a half-hearted manner. Oz was featured but never really went anywhere.
In short, this one was a disappointment