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I've wanted to write some other fandom stuff, but then I was watching Desperate Housewives (which made me cry, thank you very much) and now I'm almost out of time and have to go to work again. The day really doesn't have enough hours...

Anyway, I finished the Supernatural novel "War of the Sons" two days ago and for the first time in a long time, I felt the need to write my (unfortunately, mostly negative) thoughts about it down.

I liked the story idea in general, especially towards the end when it was clear what secrets the scrolls were containing. But then there were so many things that I didn’t like that I actually feel the need to write it down. And usually, I’m not writing book reviews that are this long. As well as usually, when I don’t have anything nice to say, I say nothing at all. Maybe it’s because I noticed so many contradictions from canon, which I just wanted to point out. But which is also sad as the book was written by two people who’re working on Supernatural, even wrote episodes before, so they should know more.

Anyway, first, I had some troubles getting into the story, but I have that sometimes with books, so I wasn’t concerned and thought it would get better later on. But it already went downhill when Dean and Sam met Don, the angel, who wasn’t really that angel-like. But that’s not the worst part. I mean, we’re used to angels, not behaving like typical angels, like Gabriel for example. I also noticed that Don was very much different from the first time he appears in the book, at the very beginning when he’s looking for his (vessel’s) son at the camp site, than when he actually met the Winchesters. First, he was serious, but with the boys, he wasn’t at all. Knowing his end game in the end, I was thinking that he maybe just tried to act differently to get the Winchesters’ trust. Also, why the plague-like incidents just to attract the Winchesters attention, instead of just approaching them?

The time travel back to 1954 was a good idea, I thought. I don’t mind time travel at all, so that’s one of the few things that I really liked. I almost already expected Dean and Sam to get send back there as it was said in the beginning that that was when the War Scroll was seen complete the last.

First, I thought it would be really simple, a grab and run, so to speak, but then two other hunters appeared, Walter and his daughter Julia, which I thought was an interesting turn. Also because it’s not clear at all right away that they’re hunters, too. But the escape with the train was just ridiculous, I thought. Sam went from car to car and painted devil’s traps before the doors but then they were attacked by many demons anyway, so there really was no use at all for those. Same goes for painting the devil’s traps on the ceiling, walls and floor again when they were surrounded in one train car by the demons, and – Eisheth, one of Lucifer’s wives. Later, the reader finds out that she had been trapped in one of the clay jars where the scrolls had been in. But first, I was like, what the hell is she doing there? And why? But ok, that was cleared then. Still, I didn’t like it that much. Especially the scenes in the warehouse towards the end.

For the main characters, Sam, again, carried the weight of the world on his shoulders, as so often. Why he felt guilty for the dead hunters in 1954, I didn’t know. Something must’ve happened to them, otherwise they would still have those hunter meetings in such large groups in the future. Which the boys asked themselves, too, that something must’ve happened. So, if you ask me, Sam or Dean couldn’t be blamed for anything that happened there, as it was clearly part of the hunters’ destinies to die there and no one was guilty of it. Imagine the story without the boys entirely: Walter would’ve stolen the War Scroll right from the beginning and still would’ve met with the other hunters in that warehouse and Eisheth would’ve killed them all. It would’ve happened anyway.

The love story between Dean and Julia was pointless. Of course, it’s in Dean’s nature to be after (almost) every beautiful girl, but to develop feelings right away, that’s something else entirely. And then even thinking about giving up hunting, having a future with Julia – in 1954! – that is so not Dean at all! What I liked though was when Dean went to this retirement home – in 2010 – to go through Julia’s stuff that she left behind after she died. What I would’ve enjoyed even more, I think, would’ve been for Julia to be still alive and meet Dean again. The reader never finds out what happened to her back in 1954 after the boys left, so it could’ve been possible.

I liked that it were Dean and Sam who destroyed the last pages of the scroll in the end and that that made them travel back to 2010. As it’s first said, no one knows what happened to the pages and Don sent them to find the pages and bring them back, but due to what they find out about the scroll, they destroy it. So that’s why no one knows what happened to those last pages. Cool turn.

What I absolutely hated though was that Dean promised Eisheth to take her with them to 2010 to be with Lucifer, only that she wouldn’t kill Julia! I’m sure there could’ve been other ways, too. And then having her “travel” in Sam’s body?! Come on! Or letting her possess another woman then! Even if Dean had used that promise to have her let go of Julia, he could’ve still broken his promise and just killed her, in my opinion.

And then her fight with Don wasn’t good, either. I mean, still using Sam’s body to defeat an angel? At the same time while they’re fighting, Dean called Castiel and he pops right in the café next to Dean – where everybody saw it! Not the usual way they do things. And instead of helping Sam or rather Eisheth, so Sam’s body doesn’t get even more beat up, he summons more angels, although we’ve found out before that not all angels are our friends, right? And then they kill Don.

And Castiel! Why didn’t he heal Sam, I thought myself, like he would heal Dean later on in the season 5 finale? The story of the book takes place after “My Bloody Valentine”, so he doesn’t have his angel mojo, I realized then. But still he has enough power to teleport Dean and Sam, and even the Impala!? So, I guess there are some errors in the continuity.

All in all, for me, this was one of the worst Supernatural novels, so far.

Comments

( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
raths_kitten
Mar. 16th, 2011 10:39 pm (UTC)
I still want to read it, so I'm not reading the long review, it just makes me sad that it's negative. The last one was already completely terrible and I expected this one to at least be better, since it was written by Kripke's assistant. So he knows the show.

Ah, I just have to hope it can't be as bad as the Civil War one.
spirited_lizard
Mar. 17th, 2011 07:42 pm (UTC)
The Civil War one was The Unholy Cause, right? I liked that one. And I also liked Witch's Canyon, although I think others didn't like this one at all. It's so weird how our taste differs. haha
raths_kitten
Mar. 17th, 2011 09:54 pm (UTC)
Yes, Unholy Cause. You honestly liked it? The one where they kill a ghost with the demon killing knife and shoot rock salt at a demon? Where in one scene they ask this guy to get them the knife back and he says he'll see what he can do, and at the end of the scene he pulls it out "oh hey, I got this for you earlier today"? And where they lose all their clothes yet ten minutes later Dean is wearing his leather jacket? Even the SPN lore aside that novel was complete crap IMO. It showed that the author write and edited it in two weeks while being on the road.

I stopped reading Witch's Canyon 20 pages in. I should pick it back up.
spirited_lizard
Mar. 18th, 2011 11:51 pm (UTC)
So far, out of the six books I've read, I liked The Unholy Cause, Witch's Canyon and Nevermore was ok, too (I won it, so I didn't spend money on it. Maybe that made me like it? LOL IDK). The others were... meh. An ok-read, I'd say.

I don't find them all very good books, but they're part of the show, so I'm giving them all a try, I guess.

But oh, I just remembered what you meant with The Unholy Cause. Yes, there were some parts where I also thought, huh? o.O But all in all, I liked it.

Edited at 2011-03-18 11:51 pm (UTC)
raths_kitten
Mar. 20th, 2011 12:57 am (UTC)
I liked those by Keith R.A: DeCandido best, mostly because they felt like he actually watched the show and I just adored his flashbacks. The last one with the Japanese warrior was a bit meh, but it rocked for the scene with Sam and Dean at Bobby's.

But yes, TV tie-ins are rarely good. I remember for Buffy they had one really great author but there was also a lot of crap. They had a gazillion books. I only read a few of them.
spirited_lizard
Mar. 20th, 2011 09:42 pm (UTC)
Did you know that Keith R.A. DeCandido is on LJ, too? kradical

I heard so much bad stuff about Heart of the Dragon, but I didn't find it that bad. It had cool scenes.

I wanted to read the Buffy books, or at least some, but then there were so many and I didn't know which were good, so I never bought any. But I got a handful of the Charmed ones, and it was the same. One of two were really good, but also one was absolutely... awful.
raths_kitten
Mar. 21st, 2011 02:48 pm (UTC)
Yes! And it strongly speaks for him. ;)

Really? Hm, yeah, I also didn't find it that bad. I hope it won't keep him from writing more. I pre-ordered the next two and it's different authors again. Although I think one of the girl who co-write War of the Sons. What I also like about Keith is that he develops real side characters. Usually he kills them off, but it just reads different than 'random guy killed from the boys POV'.

I liked the Roswell tie-ins. The last two or three actually played after the show ended and they gave them a really good finish. That was awesome.

For Buffy I read the comics. Which reminds me, when I'm done rewatching Angel now, I need to pick up the new comics. They also play after the season finale.
spirited_lizard
Mar. 21st, 2011 07:40 pm (UTC)
I still hear people saying that they don't like Heart of the Dragon because Dean and Sam only rarely appear in the story. I didn't hate that, I liked the flashbacks and how the spirit was fought over the decades by the Winchesters.

I thought about getting the Buffy comics, too. But haven yet, as so many other things... :P
raths_kitten
Mar. 21st, 2011 08:26 pm (UTC)
Oh, hm, that would be a reason, yeah. I liked the glimpse into family history and how it overlapped. I really liked young Mary! And that scene with the boys at Bobby's was pure love.

Yeah, I know. I'm soon done with a Dexter novel now I dunno what to read next. Finish Jim's book? Alice in Wonderland? Good Omens? The next Dexter novel? Comics?
spirited_lizard
Mar. 22nd, 2011 08:19 pm (UTC)
Jim's book! ♥
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )

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