So, I'm a pretty big fan of ursulav--discovered her back in college, thoroughly enjoyed gearworld while it lasted, and have read most of her fiction at this point. So I was very excited when she wrote Clockwork Boys and the Wonder Machine. It was kind of agonizing having to wait for the second one to finish getting edited. The thing is, she's really good at taking your standard tropes (in this case, your basic D&D party of paladin, assassin, cleric, and thief) and spinning it out into a world that's full of wonder and oddities and charming characters that you just want to hang out with. The paladin in these books is a brilliant example of how you can write a completely Good character without him being at all boring. There's a bit of romance, a nice mystery, some adventure and banter, and a good ending, although it comes with a genuine sacrifice. Definitely a enjoyable read if you're in the mood for tropey fantasy done well.
Can't give quite as glowing a review for SPN 13.09 ("The Bad Place"), but I will freely admit that's mostly because I'm really a monster-of-the-week gal. I grew up on procedurals, and that remains my preference. However, this was solid enough--Jack remains a well-constructed character, with a nice balance of naivety/increasingly casual power/a real desire to do good but an inability to predict the consequences of his actions. The abandoned boatyard was a fabulous set for the showdown at the end, and the effect of the angels slowly smashing their way through the wards worked. We haven't seen angels do much in concert like that, and it shows that they really can be a dangerous force when they're working together.
I know it's probably been a while since most of you have seen the episode, but what parts did you enjoy?