Taking a somewhat academic (though mostly fun) approach, A Visitor’s Guide to Mystic Falls examines the first season of the popular CW show The Vampire Diaries. Each of the 11 essays is written by a novelist, who also happens to be a fan of the show. Included is a book-to-show guide written by the editors Red and Vee, who run Vampire-Diaries.net. As a fan of the show (and books), I appreciated the insight offered here. Bree Despain’s in-depth look at Bonnie, a character frequently ignored in favor of the show’s three leads, is both excellent and thoughtful. The following two essays (by Claudia Gray and Jon Skovron, respectively) are also extremely interesting. Gray argues that changing the brothers’ background improves the tale as it makes them part of the town’s “central event.” Skovron discusses other vampire tales and the role women have in them and in The Vampire Diaries. For fans who like to put a little thought into what plays out on their screens, the critical essays contained within are must-reads.
Review copy provided by the publisher, Smart Pop Books.