Mar 31, 2022

Review--In Every Generation by Kendare Blake


Return to Sunnydale in a brand-new series by New York Times best-selling author Kendare Blake, set in the world of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Frankie Rosenberg wasn't yet alive when her mom, Willow, her aunt Buffy, and the original Scooby Gang destroyed the Hellmouth and saved the world from the First Evil. These days, life in New Sunnydale is blissfully quiet. Frankie is just trying to survive her sophomore year at the rebuilt high school and use her budding magical powers to make the world a better place.

But that world is suddenly plunged into danger when the slayer community is the target of a deadly attack, leaving the future of the line uncertain. Then Frankie discovers she's sort of freakishly strong. Oh, and there's something Willow never told her about her true identity.

Cue the opening credits.

Quicker than she can carve a stake, Frankie discovers there's more to saving the world than witty one-liners and stupid hot demons. now everyone looks to her for answers, but speaking up has never been her strong suit. And it's hard to be taken seriously when your mom is such a powerful witch she almost ended the world once, while your greatest magic trick is recycling.

Despite the many challenges standing in her way, Frankie must assemble her own bumbling Scooby Gang, get dressed up in Buffy's (vintage '90s) clothes, and become a new slayer for a new generation―before whatever came for the rest of the slayers comes for her next.

Kendare Blake explores new territory with her newest release, In Every Generation! Every Buffy fan will want to read this one and any Buffy newbie will still find plenty to love with this fresh new vampire read! Set some years after the events of the TV series, this book follows Frankie, daughter of Willow, and the world's first slayer-witch, or witch-slayer, if you will.

When tragedy strikes at a slayer gathering, everyone believes all the slayers are gone. The world is without a protector until Frankie starts exhibiting strange new abilities, ones that are very slayer-like. I bet Buffy fans are first wondering how Frankie came to be Willow's daughter. It does get explained in a believable way, I mean the comparison example is pretty apt. I won't get into the details, but never free, this gets squared away pretty quickly. Frankie is now sort of forced to be the new slayer in New Sunnydale.

Yes, Sunnydale still stands...well kinda. Apparently people thought it was a good idea to rebuild the town over the still standing but locked up Hellmouth! Everything is pretty humble in town, until word spreads that the slayers are all gone and every vampire in the area decides to come to the Hellmouth and reigned havoc!

Meanwhile, Frankie has to go through a pretty intense training regime with her new Watcher...Spike! Yes friends, Spike is back and he's in Watcher mode! Honestly, seeing all the greats back was just amazing! This is where being a Buffy fan really comes into play! While newbies are still fine to read along, there are just familiar faces and past events that get brought up that will be hard to know about when it just gets mentioned. But yes, this was a blast from the past for sure! We get word from Xander, Oz is in town raising his cousin/nephew--they're family but it's a rather twisted connection.

But the danger really starts to amp up when a very Bid Bad comes to town as well. I don't want to spoil this villain's reveal but I have to say, Blake really hits all the right vampire notes with this one! I know a bit of my vampire history and how it literally plays into our world today and I was all for this! There's also another entity in town who is looking for a slayer's heart, they're quite the delicacy...which basically means a lot of things in New Sunnydale are looking to take Frankie down.

This story was a delight to read! I loved seeing Frankie come into her new powers and the was all very reminiscent of Buffy days! I loved seeing Spike as her Watcher though, his character really has grown since the series ended...and his time on Angel too. Sadly, no word was said on Angel in this one, but hey, it's only book 1!

Frankie has her own set of Scoobies as well, because what's a slayer without her Scoobies? There's Jake, Oz's relation that he has taken to raising, and yes, he's a werewolf too! Then newcomer Hailey is in town, her older sister was a slayer who is MIA with the others and Spike, who was her sister's Watcher, brought her to New Sunnydale for her protection. Then we get another newbie to town who joins the gang as well.

I love how these original Buffy characters still felt so very true to their character so many years later! I positively adored Willow and Oz reconnecting. Things do still seem rather tense between the two of them since we last saw them together when he learned about Tara. He has gained full control of his wolf though and he does seem to still care for Willow, whereas her feelings aren't quite the same, but a memory of them are still there. It's definitely what one would call complicated. I found myself so highly invested in the adults of this story just as much as I was invested in their kids. 

Since I usually touch on romance with my reviews, I will say that there are hints of possible romances left and right in this one! There's not a whole lot of it, but we kind of went down that path with the first season of Buffy too. So this book pretty much plays it the right way when you think of it.

The ending to this one was pretty exciting too! While things get mostly resolved, there is still plenty left unsaid. Questions popped up near the end that don't get answered and I cannot wait to see what Blake will do with this series! It's bound to be a stellar series from start to finish! In Every Generation is the book Buffy fans worldwide have been waiting for and it's a book every vampire loving reader will need to read as well! It takes a fresh new take on the slayer/vampire story but still has enough hints of the classic to appeal to all readers!

Overall Rating 5/5 stars

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