Rite of Passage
Supernatural, Book #10
By John Passarella
Author’s Website: http://www.passarella.com/
Brought to you by OBS reviewer Sammy
Thirty years ago, Sam and Dean Winchester lost their mother to a demonic supernatural force. Following the tragedy, their father taught the boys everything about the paranormal evil that lives in the dark corners of America… and how to kill it.
Laurel Hill, New Jersey is beginning to look like one of the unluckiest places on Earth when a series of mishaps hit the town. But Sam and Dean suspect it’s more than just bad luck. Along with Bobby Singer, the brothers soon realize that a powerful Japanese demon is encouraging the chaos. But the demon has bigger plans and they are going to need to make their own luck to stop it.
A Supernatural novel that reveals a previously unseen adventure for the Winchester brothers, from the hit TV series! (Goodreads)
I received this book to read for an honest review and since I am a fan of the show I thought it would be interesting. However, I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this book, after all it is difficult to compete with the eye candy on the show. John Passarella did a wonderful job of staying true to the characters, including the humorous brotherly banter between Sam and Dean, that I have come to expect. Every chapter was exciting with lots of action and fabulous descriptions of the Harpies, Tora, the kids , the “accidents”, with compelling insights into what the characters feel/think.
The story begins with Tora, and his ability to make accidents happen with shades of Final Destiny but the author has such a wonderful way of writing that it continued to hold my interest throughout the book. All the tiny details of what needed to happen to make the accidents occur were clear and made it more suspenseful and gruesome. Excellent! After, the first surprise of truly scary horror the book then moves on to classic Sam, Dean and Bobby hunting and killing three Harpies, but again with an added level of horror that the show doesn’t/can’t depict.
One of the things that I found interesting (in a great way) was how the author kept things separate, Tora, Dean and Sam, Bobby and McCleary, the students and their lives. It helped to focus on each of the characters; their personalities helping the reader to see more of their individual thoughts and who they were. In the show you always see the “bad guy” but don’t get a real feel of where they are at except that they are evil, wanting to cause destruction and death. That we got to see with Tora working on his skills really added to how he was. Also, how he cared for his children, yet still they weren’t safe from him when he was displeased with them. I found him to be an interesting character that wasn’t the usual one dimensional bad guy.
As the story moves along the characters start getting more intertwined and we get a chance to see how they start fitting together. The author has paced this perfectly adding to the twists and turns without giving away to much to soon.
I was thrilled that the author continued in the same fashion as on the show with the old school references. “Steed”, “Dust in the Wind”. I had to actually look one up; Mr. Chapeau. A couple of things came up and they both fit. I also, checked out Oni and there was some interesting history that for me added to the character, Tora.
One of my favorite characters was Sumiko (love her name), she was a very bright young women, with goals and a sweet personality. When Ryan broke her monitor, she very firmly told him to leave and that his behavior was unacceptable. After some thinking on her part, she took apart all the things going on with her and Ryan, she made a mature decision and went to talk to him. Ryan clearly was a sweetheart and didn’t want to involve her in what was going on with him. I felt for him because he must have been very scared and continued to get more and more unsure of himself as time went on. The two other boys, while having difficult lives, were not as engaging as Ryan, so there wasn’t the same feeling of compassion for them as they changed.
Was the book better than the TV show? Yes, in some ways. The horror aspects of this book were fantastic, and not something they can put in the show. The writing was spot on as were the pacing and flow, the details the author added and the descriptive way he wrote had the character, places and gore leaping off the pages. For Supernatural fans of the TV show this story is much more hardcore horror and of course you will be missing the eye candy of Dean and Sam, but I think it’s well worth reading this excellently written story.
This book is a very grown up version of the TV show and not for kids, but recommended for adult Supernatural fans and anyone who loves the horror genre.