Fresh Meat is book number eleven in the series of TV Tie-in novels from the CW show Supernatural, and is written by Alice Henderson. It takes place during season seven between episodes 5 (Shut Up, Dr. Phil) and 6 (Slash Fiction), and technically comes before book ten in the series if you read them in chronological order.
…possible spoiler warning for those not familiar with the TV series…
In this tale the Winchester brothers, and father-figure Bobby Singer, head to the mountains of the Sierra Nevada on the hunt of a wendigo which is thought to be stalking hikers.
I like the fact that Bobby accompanies Sam and Dean on this hunt, and it’s not just another plain Winchester brother monster-hunt. However, initially it seemed like this author wasn’t bringing anything new to the Supernatural universe. The wendigo, a human-flesh eating monster which is a regular human being transformed into a feral creature, harkens away back to season one of the CW series. In episode two of the very first series, aptly named Wendigo, the Winchester’s travel to Blackwater Ridge where they attempt to save some campers from the feral creature.
I expected this to be a simple story re-hashing the wendigo plotline, but I was pleasantly surprised to discover that there was actually a lot more to it than that. The boys are also stalked by vampires, and another creature called an Aswang. On top of the monsters that hunt them, high in the mountain terrain they must endure harsh winter storms and avalanches, resulting in a survival story in difficult weather.
All in all at 3.5 out of 5 stars, Fresh Meat actually turned out to be a fairly entertaining novel. However, the overly-descriptive narrative gets a bit repetitive at times, and seems to drag out the story making it a bit of a slog to read during the middle section. The writer keeps you guessing in regards to the creature’s human identity, which retains some mystery to the story.