Clocking in as the largest SPN book published by Titan so far, Night Terrors certainly goes for the most epic of them as well.
How does it do?
Well… it doesn’t quite top Coyote’s Kiss (which had Lovecraftian-esque monstrosities threatening the world) but it does put in a good show.
The story here is that nightmares are becoming real (if you couldn’t guess from the book’s title alone), not too unlike Mr Penny… . As a consequence, it goes all out with the scenes of events and occurrences that only a book can really deliver including… NAZI ZOMBIES! (that alone gets +1 shell) However, since it can’t quite do the tension and scares that a TV/Movie (complete with soundtrack) can, the book goes for extremely detailed gore. If you had problems with SPN’s My Bloody Valentine, you won’t like this.
In execution, the story’s serviceable. We know the brothers are going to live based on where in the series the story is supposed to take place. So the author does a great job setting up characters we come to like and getting us to care about their fates and whether the Winchesters save them. Like I said, very standard, but the author pulls it off well and there’s something to be said for well crafted mediocrity.
Lore-wise there’s only two sort of issues. First, is that I’m somewhat disappointed that Sam’s mental wall didn’t play a bigger role. There is a bit at the end where… obsessive fans (why are you looking at me like that?) could squeeze in a cameo for the wall, but it is a bit of a stretch. A bit more of an overt reference would have made the ending a lot neater and tighter. The second lore issue is that the creature involved seemed a bit too powerful.* A demi-god would have been more fitting. Or maybe something like Eve or Castiel or Rapheal trying to distract the boys.
All in all…
Recommended to fans needing a fix in the off season who want to see the brothers fight giant lizards, spiders and NAZI ZOMBIES!
*Spoiler: The creature is ultimately killed by iron. Cool and all but as it got stronger from draining people’s dreams, and we didn’t have iron available for most of human history, one can’t help but wonder how this thing didn’t take over the world way back in pre-history. It’s quite a bit of fridge-logic.