Cold Fire by John Passarella (a Supernatural novel)

The 14th novel to accompany the show Supernatural is finally here (and yes, I’ve read them all).

Supernatural is about two brothers, Sam and Dean, who travel across America and hunt things that go bump in the night. This novel plays in the 10th season, between the episodes “About the boy” and “Halt & catch fire”. Dean struggels with the mark of Cain and the brothers and their angel friend Castiel are searching for a way to remove the mark.

This novel takes the brothers and Castiel to Indiana, where gruesome murders take place. They discover a connection with the victims: they were all soon-to-be fathers. The brothers dig into the past of the town Braden Heights and discover some troubling secrets as they are hunting whatever creature is responsible.

John Passarella has written two other Supernatural novel and his third one is just as good to read as the previous ones. He manages to catch the tone of the show and paint the characters (the Winchester brothers and Castiel) really well. Castiel’s fake ID even names him Agent Collins which the fans know to be the actors (stage)name. The case is fascinating and takes turns up until the end and it even triggers memories from the Winchester’s individual past with appearances of characters some fans are longing to see again on the show as well.

This book gets 4,5 out of 5 possible gold stars and await the publishing date of the next Supernatural novel this summer.

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Voyager by Diana Gabaldon

The third book the Outlander series sets in where the second one left off. We, and Claire, now know that Jamie survived Culloden and they attempt to find out what happened to him after Claire left through the stones.

 

When Brianna and Claire locate a time and place where Jamie was very likely to be, Claire begins thinking about returning to him. Having made up her mind, she goes back through the stones and makes her way to Edinburgh where Jamie supposedly works as a printer by the name of Alexander Malcolm. Will she find him? What has happened to him in the 20 years they were apart. Has he remarried and forgotten about her? Will she have a place by his side? And if she has, what will life be like…

Voyager is as well written as the first two books. Diana Gabaldon takes the readers on a fantastic journey through Scotland, France and other parts of the earth. The surprising return of well known characters (which I have no idea of how the tv show will manage in a plausible way), the introduction of new friends, information about Jamie’s and Claire’s life in the 20 years they spent apart and an adventure that just won’t let you put the book down make this book a joy to read. I laughed, I cried but I always had my eyes glued to the page, not wanting to put the book down. This is one of those book which you want to know about how it ends but you don’t want it to end at the same time. Luckily, this isn’t the last book in this series, so I will just have to wait until I can read Drums of Autumn.

 

I give this book 4,5 out of 5 possible little gold stars.

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

Though it was first published in 1991, I hadn’t heared of this book (and the whole series for that matter) until I watched the show and fell in love with it. So I decided to read the books for I couldn’t wait for more stories about Claire and Jamie. Now that I read the first book I am even more a fan than I was before.

 

Claire Randall is on a second honeymoon with her husband Frank. In the Scottish Highlands she comes across amgical stones and travels back thorugh time, from the 20th into the 18th century. She has to adapt, find a way to surivive in this time and try to figure out how to escape the grasp of one Captain Jonathan Randall, her husband’s ancestor. On the quest of finding her way back she also has to decide where her heart truely lies- with Jamie, an 18th century Highlander with a price on his head or with Frank back in the 20th.

The story Diana Gabaldon tells, is amazing. She has a great way of getting us close to Claire, telling us everything through her perspective. You laugh, you cry and you love with her as you accompany her on her journey. And since you only know what Claire knows, discovering the ways of the Highlands is a great reading experience.

What took me some getting used to was the Scottish English since I hadn’t come across it before and had never seen it written. But it doesn’t take too long to figure out.

 

I give this book 4,5 of 5 possible gold stars and I am looking forward to reading the next books.

PS: As for the question of how close the tv show stayed to the books… In the beginning, it is amazingly close. Throughout the whole first season, the dialogues are sometimes taken directly from the books. Some scenery changes aside and in the end some changing of the order of events, the show is a great adaption of an amazing book. I’m waiting for season 2.

Pretty Little Liars

When I started watching Pretty Little Liars, the show was already well into season 2. I was curious because I had read so much online and people were psyched about it. I read what it was about and I thought it might be worth looking into.

I was hooked almost immediatly. I wanted to know who the person was that send that text, I wanted to know what this was all about what the girls would have to go through until they finally found out.

The story starts with Aria getting back from a year in Iceland, finding that her friends have gone seperate ways after Alison DiLaurentis disappeared and Aria and her family left the country. Then a body is found and the police say it’s Alison’s. The group that was close to her, being Aria and her friends (Emily, Spencer, Hannah), find their way back together. After the funeral they all get a text. It says that there’ll be more to come and it’s signed by A. So from the beginning, the girls are set on finding out who that A is who knows a lot of their secrets and blackmails them.

Now that I’m writing this the sixth episode of season 6 has just aired. I have stopped watching the show several times now. After season 3 I only continued into the next season because I thought we’d get some answers. When it was clear that we wouldn’t, I stopped somewhere in season 4. Then I read online: There are new clues, we’ll get A. I caught up and again- no answers, just more confusion. Again, hoping that there were some answers, I kept up with the show and watched as Aria, Spencer, Emily and Hannah searched for clues that might lead to A. Until I read that the network confirmed season 6 and 7. That was it for me. I wasn’t gonna let myself get dragged into two more seasons of “That’s A. Oh no, it’s not, too bad we ruined that character.”. BUT the network promised to reveal A with the fifth season finale. That meant catching up on the parts of season 5 I hadn’t yet seen. The #BigReveAl turned out to be… Nothing. We got a first name and some cryptic video clue to A actually being linked to the DiLaurentis family. So far so good. I (and a lot of other people) were really disappointed and some even said they’d quit watching the show for good. Other were just happy about finally getting a real clue.

Before seeing the sixth episode of this season I was close to quitting myself. Charles turned out to be a dead end. Literally. The guy was dead and the girls had proof. Or so they thought. So he couldn’t be A. A had to be someone else. Again, the “definite” answer the network had promised turned out to be bogus. Another promise was the #SummerofAnswers. This summer, we’d finally get the answers, season 6 was supposed to reveal the thing that got the show going and was what kept everyone watching- who is A and why the heck did they do what they did. Until now, I didn’t feel like I was getting a lot of answers. I still don’t because so much we thought true and proofed wasn’t in the end. The Charles angle didn’t seem to go anywhere, but as usual the show has another suspect ready. In this last episode there are some strong hints at Charles not being as dead as we thought. Which leaves me behind feeling rather confused.

I loved this show from the get go. I liked Aria, Hannah, Spencer and Emily. And of course I was always on the lookout for A. Who could it be? From season 3 on, I was convinced that it wasn’t someone we had seen yet. Another theory of mine was that it was one of the girls. When Alison returned, I had my suspicions on her for a while. Turned out that my theory about not having seen A yet, turned out to be right. (Unless they hid Charles somewhere in plain sight.)

The first two seasons were great, terrific.. Of course there’d be throwbacks in finding A. After that it was just getting ridiculous at some points. And now in season 6… I just hope- for the sake of the show and my curiosity- they reveal A for good soon and find another angle to tell the girls’ story in season 7. I mean, there is still quite the aftermath to deal with. I still love the characters but if you spread a story out too thin, you might end up ruining it for good. Yes, it always sad to see a show you like come to an end. But sometimes it’s better to end on a high. I loved Psych and I was devastated when it ended after season 8 but in the end… It was a great show, the quality never dropped and it’s fun to watch from pilot to series finale. I loved Revenge and I was sad to see it go but in the end I think they should’ve written an ending sooner. Maybe not the happy ending it got but one that fit the story, fit the characters and not an ending that felt like: “We aren’t getting another season, let’s see how we can wrap up fast and give the fans what they want.”