Review: Crystal Lake Memories eBook (2012)

It's a funny thing about being a fan of something in life. You find within yourself a desire and passion you may never had thought possible. Sometimes a little film like Friday the 13th sneaks up on you and bites you in the rear end and from that point forward you really never look back. People who are fans of sports teams, movies, comic book characters and so on understand this fact and know that passion that drives your fandom is infectious and can lead you to perhaps one of the craziest projects imaginable. That is really what happened to author Peter M. Bracke as he set out on his original 3 year quest to bring Friday the 13th fans the much needed behind the scenes look at arguably the most successful horror franchise in the world as well as one of the longest running film franchises in the history of motion pictures.

From 2005 Hardcover Release To 2012 eBook
In our interview with Peter about the new eBook last month, he mentioned how the idea for this humongous project really began after a screening of Friday The 13th Part 3 back in 2002. The realization that nothing had really been published documenting the Friday the 13th films really began to eat at Peter so his three year endeavor began for which would prove to completely burn out the author by the time the book was published in 2005. After a number of years passed, Peter felt that the book was incomplete as a great number of images did not make it into the hard cover book due to space limitations and money considerations. However, with the new eBook technology, he saw an opportunity to offer fans an updated and more complete compilation that was economical for which would include all of the material excluded from the 2005 book as well as offer new interviews with cast and crew missed on the previous go around.

New Interviews
Some of the new interviews for the eBook include Danny Steinmann, Melanie Kinnaman, Catherine Parks, Gloria Charles, Ron Sloan, Tom Fridley, Elizabeth Kaitan, Scott Reeves and many more cast and crew. You may wonder why Friday the 13th: A New Beginning director Danny Steinmann was granted a new interview? Well, he was given an opportunity to respond to cast and crew who were quoted in the 2005 release of the book and if you want an idea of what he has to say, check out a snippet posted in The Forum. It is entertaining to say the least.

Melanie Kinnaman also pulls no punches when it comes to expressing her feelings about her experience in A New Beginning with what can be viewed as long over do parting shots at the film.

Enhanced Edition Platforms: The Real Comparison
We all know by now that there are two editions being released, a Standard and Enhanced eBook. Although the differences between the two have been explained in advertisements previously, realistically the only difference is that the Standard Edition is text only with no media at all whereas the Enhanced Edition contains images, audio, and video. Realistically, the more important difference is between the platforms that the Enhanced eBook is being offered.

The main difference between the Kindle and iBook (iPad) versions of the Enhanced eBook is layout and interactivity. The iBook platform truly looks like an electronic version of the hardcover Crystal Lake Memories released in 2005. For the fans that own the book and have been accustomed to reading it in that format for the last seven years, the iBook will make the experience seamless. Imagine reading the hardcover book but now you can flip through images right on the page or play video interviews with the cast and crew. That's what the powerful and more interactive iBook platform gives you with the Enhanced edition. This really is the true ready reference edition of Crystal Lake Memories and the Friday The 13th film franchise.

My thought on the iBook platform version is that if you have a question on say the opening of Jason Lives: Friday The 13th Part 6, you can open up the eBook quickly, touch on the section for Jason Lives and then search out Filming The Opening Sequence. On the page you have Brian Wade talking about the opening effects and there is a slide show gallery filming the scene and some of the prep work and behind the scenes images of the crew.

As you can see, it is a fantastic layout for which you can easily read interviews and flip through various images, which goes back to why Peter Bracke decided to update the book in the first place with the new ability to place more images and content on page for the fan. In comparison, the same gallery is depicted in the Kindle Platform, but the images have to be displayed all at once.

With the Kindle Enhanced Edition fans must read down from top to bottom throughout the book in a straight line format while encountering groupings of images as you progress. This is a far cry from the layout of the iBook and 2005 hardcover book, but it does not diminish the value of the information or the images that are discovered throughout the eBook. As mentioned before, the layout and interactivity of the two platforms for the Enhanced Edition are the big differences here. The iBook platform displays all images, storyboards, scripts and advertisements on page in the different film sections of the iBook platform with easy reference, whereas any material not able to be included in the Kindle eBook film pages are included at the end in Appendix Pages.

It really is a matter of finding the information in different places for each platform. The only material excluded completely from the Kindle platform is the embedded audio and video files and that is just a matter of technology not being on Kindle's side just yet.

Conclusion: Should You Buy This?
Of course you should! If you're a Friday The 13th fan and yearn to find out more about your beloved film franchise then you owe it to yourself to spend $10 or $14 to get this. The new interviews are highly entertaining and add more information to the making of the films. The real value here, besides getting this mammoth book in digital form, are all of the brand new behind the scenes images, rare script pages and never before seen storyboards. The Jason Lives section is the overall treat to read through with a tremendous amount of new on set images and storyboards to pour through.

The most glaring omission from this eBook is that Friday The 13th 2009 did not gain its own section for fans to read about. It was originally thought that this was going to be included, but looking at it now, Freddy vs Jason truly did close the chapter on that part of the history of the franchise, so maybe a new book can be written about the films decades from now, starting with the 2009 film.

The real dilemma for fans is paying $13.99 for the Kindle Enhanced Edition or waiting to get hands on an iPad Enhanced Version to get the more enriched experience. Both platforms offer the same information and images, but more media accompanies the iBook (iPad). I read through each platform offering for the Enhanced Edition and although I recommend the iBook more, Friday The 13th fans will enjoy reading about the films in any version that they are able to attain!

For More Information, check out our Crystal Lake Memories eBook Center
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