Written by: Keith R.A. DeCandido
Published by: Harper Entertainment – An Imprint of Harper Collins Publishers
Release Date: July 31, 2007
Page Count: 336
Based on the hit CW series Supernatural created by Erick Kripke
As some of you may know by now, I am, like many others, a big fan of the hit CW series Supernatural, which tells the story of two brothers who are in the business of hunting monsters within the real world. Raised into the life of hunting down monsters by their father, after their mother was brutally murdered in their home, Sam and Dean Winchester do everything they can to hunt down every evil thing they can and save as many people as they can in the process. It’s an incredible show that ran from 2005-2020 with 15 seasons and a whole lot of memories for the die-hard fans.
When I discovered there were standalone novels to this series as well, which take place and tell the untold stories of some cases Sam and Dean took care of in-between episodes though, I knew I had to find and read at least one. Just my luck there happened to be one that caught my eye, as it revolves around one of my favourite gothic writers who would make for perfect supernatural storytelling, Edgar Allan Poe. So of course, without a second thought, I quickly grabbed and bought the book titled ‘Supernatural: Nevermore’.
This story takes place in season two of the show, between the episodes “Crossroad Blues” (S2 E8) and “Croatoan” (S2 E9) and it might be obvious but I will say it anyway, this book can be read without previous knowledge of the show, but I would recommend watching the show first because there are events linked into the book from the show, such as Dean now being a fugitive, which is a result of events occurring in season one episode six and season two episode seven. So it would be best to watch at least the first two seasons before reading this book. Funnily enough, it also contains some spoilers for some of Poe’s horror tales, so be wary of those if you decide to go ahead and read this book before reading Poe’s work.
Sam and Dean are on their way to New York, by request of their friend Ash who tells them there’s a ghost bothering his buddy who’s in a rock band. However, whilst on the case given to them, they find a more sinister and macabre case is happening just down the street from Manny’s home after it was reported that a pair of university students were murdered by a strange assailant. After looking further into the details of this murder, the brothers discover this isn’t the first one, and Sam soon realizes that these murders seem to be inspired by the horror stories of the legendary writer Edgar Allan Poe.
Along the way, the brothers make some new friends, learn some valuable lessons, and even a bit more history about their father. This book will introduce you to some familiar characters but more importantly, it will expand upon the world of Supernatural with a cast of new and exciting characters that feel as if they fit right into the Supernatural aesthetic.
Some books tell a great story, while others tell multiple stories hidden in one big story. This book is one that sees Sam and Dean trying to solve two cases simultaneously, with one taking priority over the other. One is a simple ghost hunt that requires some local research with people they meet, whilst the other is a ritualistic killing with relation to a writer who’s been dead for over 150 years. You’d imagine it was difficult to work one simple case in their lives, but to handle two at once and for the writer of this book, Keith R.A. DeCandido, to give both cases some entertaining elements so that they are both memorable, is not an easy task.
I feel that when I read this book, as much as I love Poe-related crime, I do not prioritize my interest in one case over another. I as the reader, am interested to see the result of both of the cases that Sam and Dean are working on because both hold a lot of mystery to them. When questioned about the possible identity of the ghost haunting the rock band, the members of the band all seem very unclear and somewhat distracted when discussing the possible victim who Sam and Dean’s suspect is the ghost, though that could be because the band members are often drunk or high most of the time.
The Poe-related case introduces the Winchester brothers to more interesting characters which helps expand the world of Supernatural itself, by telling the reader how deep certain hunter-related connections go, even in the big cities such as New York. It seems a couple of the people they meet during this case also knew their Dad, John Winchester, which again, helps expand the lore created in the series by Kripke.
Keith R.A. DeCandido is a prolific author in the world of TV, Film, and Videogame tie in novels as well as adaptations, so it’s no surprise that this book is so on point with Kripke’s work. This book is just one in a whole library of DeCandido’s work that proves that he is certainly one of the best writers out there for adapting the films, shows, and games we all know and love, be it Star Wars, Resident Evil , Supernatural, or something else, he quickly became a name I look out for when looking to expand my tie-in novels collection.
This is an entertaining expansion to the CW series, and I’m sure many fans of the show would love these books. In this book, in particular, I feel that DeCandido captures the very essence of Sam and Dean as characters and writes them perfectly to the point where I can imagine the story playing out like one of the show’s episodes in my head. I can imagine Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles, sat in the Impala saying the words I’m reading, and even the witty humour, sibling rivalry, and overall chemistry with other characters are spot-on for the Winchester brothers that we know and love from the series.