By Alan Kistler
She may be best know as Tara McClay on the series "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," but Amber Benson (left, with Sarah Michelle Gellar) has since become an accomplished writer. She has written and produced her own films, written several comics and she and co-writer Christopher Golden created the popular BBC series "Albion." Now, she's taking her first solo-flight as a novelist with “Death’s Daughter,” which is book one of a trilogy.
During a book signing at Midtown Comics in Times Square, we had the chance to about her new book and its interesting protagonist, a sarcastic young woman named Calliope Reaper-Jones. Amber told Hollywood Crush, “Basically, it’s about a girl who’s father is Death. [Death as a force] is run like a corporation. He’s the president and CEO. And he gets kidnapped and [Calliope] has to come and run the company and find out what happened to her dad. But she’s like a normal girl and she doesn’t want any part of the supernatural world.”
Despite coming from a powerful family and inheriting the title of Death itself, Calliope is quite self-conscious when she meets handsome men and so, much to her frustration, she winds up having a lot of trouble dating. This, of course, is part of what makes her a character young girls can relate to.
"She’s kind of a geek," Amber said with a smile. "Kind of a dork. A little whiny at times. I wanted to create a character that was flawed. I wanted her to go on the hero’s journey. Very rarely do you see a female protagonist who isn’t already in control of her super-powers, in control of her destiny. I wanted a character who is given the call and says, 'no, no, I don’t want to do this,' and is kind of forced into her fate.
"Having worked on 'Buffy,' that sort of prepared me to write Calliope’s story. Because she’s another aggressive girl out there in the world … We’re doing a trilogy and I think as the story progresses she grows and learns and changes. Who wants somebody who’s perfect? I don’t.”
But unlike Buffy, Calliope has the companionship of a very special dog. "Runt is one of Cerberus’ puppies. Only the boys have three heads. She’s SO cute!"
A lot of Indian and Greek mythology are used in this book, but as the first of a trilogy, what other mythologies can we expect in the next two? "The second book is going to deal more, primarily, with Egyptian mythology. And I’m working on the third right now so we’ll see what happens with that one."
Comics aside, we also had the chance to ask the star about the "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" film, which is currently in the works sans the vampire slayer's original creator, Joss Whedon. "I hate to judge things before they happen," she admitted. “I like to let them be and then when I see it I’ll make a judgment on it. It definitely won’t be the same 'Buffy' as the TV show, it will not have Joss’ voice. And I think that [Joss’ voice] is what draws people into Buffy’s world … [But] it COULD be great.”
What do you think about Amber's foray into the world of books?