Review: Supernatural: Bobby Singer’s Guide to Hunting

Supernatural: Bobby Singer's Guide to Hunting
Supernatural: Bobby Singer’s Guide to Hunting by David Reed
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Bobby Singer is my favorite character on Supernatural, so when I heard there was a book that was all about his life as a hunter, of course I had to read it. I devoured it faster than the tie-in novels, that for the most part have a tendency to be missing something that makes me feel like it could be set within the timeframe of the show. This book actually feels like an episode of Supernatural, and David Reed does an excellent job of capturing the voices of Bobby and Dean Winchester.

If you’re not already a fan of the show, you’re probably not going to get a lot out of this book. While the monster lore occupies as much space as Bobby’s tale does, its spotty, directly tied in with the show itself and assumes that you already know a good deal of the information from the show. That said, it is nice to have some of the show’s lore not only written down, but told from the perspective of one of the hunters. Within the book, Bobby covers monsters from odine, okami, werewolves, vampires, banshees, and demons, all the different garden varieties of them. It’s both informative and entertaining.

Mixed in with the lore is the story of Bobby, and things that were only mentioned in the show. It starts with Karen and ends with Dean and Sam returning to him in Season 1. It’s the story of Bobby, from why he was a hunter, to how he learned to speak Japanese, to his falling out with Rufus. More than that, it’s a testament to how much Sam and Dean became his family. It’s an excellent companion piece to the Season 7 episode Death’s Door. If you are a fan of the show and more specifically, Bobby, I cannot recommend this book enough, despite it’s minor flaws.

Despite my love for this book, and my love for the show, I feel I do have to point out the few flaws it has to the die hard fans. First of all, the composition is terrible in places. At one point, the diagram was actually covering the words on the page. It wasn’t enough to make it entirely unreadable, but it should have been caught long before it went to print. More importantly, the narrative that frames Bobby’s back story does not fit into the show timeline. At all. I’ve studied it from all angles, and there is absolutely no way to fit it into the story, despite the fact that it reads so well like an actual episode. For instance, most people assumed it took place between My Heart Will Go On and Mommy Dearest which makes sense since they mention what Balthazar did and they are still on the hunt for Eve. However, in the chapter on Angels, Bobby mentions Angels are the only thing he knows of that can alter memories and he specifically mentions Castiel making Lisa and Ben forget about Dean. Which does not happen until Let it Bleed, a full two episodes after Mommy Dearest. Balls. Also, the book seems to contradict itself on whether or not Crowley is a demon. Chalk it up to Bobby just not knowing any differently, and the fact that the show doesn’t seem to know anymore. But that’s a story for a different day.

Time frame quibble aside, the book is well worth it for any fans of the show who love Bobby and want to learn more about his story.

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