Why I love Crowfeather’s Trial by Mountainstorm

Art by Tennelleflowers on DeviantArt

Mountainstorm explains why they like Crowfeather’s Trial

Hi, kits, apprentices, warriors, elders, medicine cats!
It’s a brilliant day outside, perfect weather to get inspiration for a new article; one about my favorite Warriors book, Crowfeather’s Trial. This Super Edition is just amazing! Most people dislike or hate this book, though, and don’t understand what’s so great about it. I wanted to write an article about why it means so much to me, and why this book had me hooked from beginning to end. So let’s take a trip into its pages, to the WindClan moor, and take a deeper dive into the meaning and message of this brilliant tale.

Let’s start with the reason I love this book so much, and why it’s my favorite Warriors book amongst the hundreds of others to choose from.

1. Crowfeather and Breezepelt’s redemption
It’s clear in this book; the Erins were ambitious in their goal to make Crowfeather, Breezepelt, and even Nightcloud likable characters. And in my opinion, it was done pretty well.
Okay, Breezepelt’s character development and redemption first. Breezepelt started off in the book as being the same angry and confused cat he had nearly always been back in his apprenticeship and early warriorhood. He still snapped easily. He was as brittle as a chunk of thin glass, ready to shatter to pieces if anyone provoked him. Though he had “officially” redeemed himself, he still didn’t win the battle of emotions that he was fighting in his head. And his Clanmates didn’t exactly help. Reading old blogs, articles, and comments, I feel the fan’s attitudes and feelings for Breezepelt were reflected in most WindClan characters, like Gorsetail and Leaftail, who go as far as to wish death on Breezepelt, and even spread rumors that he killed his own mother, when he obviously loves her and is broken to pieces by her death. Breezepelt is as angry and as confused as ever, but it’s hard not to feel bad for him. I mean- if you put yourself in his shoes, and empathize with him… he had a pretty neglectful and even abusive father, a mother feeding him bad information, and a small kit getting so many confusing messages does not reap good results. No one really helped him, guided him, or attempted to help him see the light. They just let him spiral off to be the angry and defensive cat he became. The one cats who helped him, the Dark Forest warriors, were actually manipulating him so much that it was hard to break away. They were fueling his anger and rage..and when it finally broke, and Breezepelt was seemingly accepted back into WindClan, his Clanmates spread cruel rumors about him and wish death on him, imagining it happily. …That would be so hard… Anyways, back on track! I find it cool how the fans thoughts and ideas for Breezepelt’s future (death, suffering, and horrid torture, mostly) were reflected in some WindClan and even ThunderClan characters, like Berrynose. Then, when Breezepelt seems ready to kill himself because of his mother’s death and his horrible life, Crowfeather starts empathizing with him, after a little guidance from his mother, Ashfoot, and Feathertail. Breezepelt immediately responds to his father’s uncharacteristic kindness towards him. He opens up, touches and admits his mistakes, saying he’s ashamed and angry at what he had done. I feel his redemption was done really well, unlike most people. It could have had more potential, sure, but compared to the usual bad cat redemptions, like Blackfoot’s, or Leopardstar’s, this was done really well, by throwing a harsh reality check in Breezepelt’s face, making him realise and chew over the mistakes he has made, them him getting a little love and guidance from his father, before admitting and apologizing to the cats he has hurt both emotionally and physically. Still not the best, but between not letting Breezepelt completely forget about his mistakes, him getting some physical therapy with his dad, and him reliving, admitting, and apologizing for what he has done wrong…I do think it’s a pretty good redemption. And might even make Breezepelt a likable character for readers.

“I trained with the Dark Forest to become a stronger warrior,” Breezepelt explained. “I needed someone to believe in me, and the Dark Forest cats did- or at least they seemed to. But I wasn’t fighting against the Clans. I’ll always be a WindClan cat first.”
-Breezepelt to Crowfeather, Crowfeather’s trail page 364 and 365.
Listening to him, Crowfeather remembered the terrible moment in the battle when Breezepelt had attacked Lionblaze. That hadn’t been the action of a traitor, he realized now, but of a cat driven to desperation by his sense of failure and isolation.
-Crowfeather’s trail, page 365
Breezepelt looked up at him, equally awkward. His eyes were guilty as he replied. “I should never have listened to the Dark Forest cats.” He mewed stiffly. “You’re a Clan cat, and my loyalty should be to the Clans.”
-Crowfeather’s trial, page 384

Moving on to Crowfeather! Crowfeather never really had to redeem himself. He never was a villain, or an evil character. But his book, Crowfeather’s Trial, gave us a new perspective on his personality and actions. Crowfeather had always been shown as a cat with not much personality or character aside from angry, grumpy, stubborn, shy, and a bit loving, gentle, and kind when he was with Feathertail or Leafpool.
Crowfeather’s Trial changed everything- this book is actually the reason Crowfeather is one of my favorite characters. We got a perspective on him and a deeper dive into his thoughts and personality, exploring hidden gems that were never uncovered before. Crowfeather is super smart, gentle, kind, caring, loving, slightly insecure…and certainly not as grumpy and angry as other cats paint him out to be. He’s actually very considerate and thoughtful, and even pretty empathic, empathizing with his son, and opening up to new possibilities and angles he had never thought of before.
“Redemption” probably wasn’t the right word to describe this. Instead, what we got of Crowfeather was the soft side of him…gentle, cuddly, kind, not at all confused and angry. Not to mention we got a lot of character development from him! Since the battle with the Dark Forest made him more open- minded, he became more passionate about the Clans; not just WindClan. He showed care for every living cat, let it be RiverClan or ShadowClan. His old personality didn’t get completely thrown away, that’s not what I’m saying. All that happened was we got a new burst of compassion and love from his character, which set him on the path to ask ThunderClan for help to save WindClan from the stoats, speak with Nightcloud calmly, apologize to his sons, and even forgive Breezepelt.
He learned to stand alone and become more independent, letting go of his past pain along the way.
He became a better character while searching for his true self…which makes Crowfeather’s Trial one of the most emotional and most thought-over books in the Warriors world.
Lastly, let’s address Nightcloud! I didn’t like Nightcloud much before. But Crowfeather’s Trial made me like her too. She has a kind, soft side; especially towards Breezepelt. She was the first to fully forgive him and support him, and she told Crowfeather to give him a second chance too.
Not to mention being friendly and grateful toward Pickle, the kittypet! That’s just too sweet!
She spoke with Crowfeather calmly and civilly afterward, and together they decided they wouldn’t be mates; but they’d be friends, for Breezepelt. Wow! Breezepelt eventually did bring his parents together!

2. The great emotion
Oh my gosh, Crowfeather’s Trial was probably one of the most emotional book ever!! But here’s the thing…most of the emotion isn’t actually sad, or bad, like in most Warriors books, which makes this Super Edition even more awesome and honorable.
First of all, the emotion was written and described really really well. It was so touching and beautiful and descriptive, which in my opinion is the only way to write good emotion.
The beginning was really sad. How the stones for the warriors who had fallen in the battle were pushed into place, and WindClan mourned their Clanmates as one; both former Dark Forest warriors and loyal WindClan warriors. Crowfeather’s emotion and sorrow made me feel like wanting to cry too. His gentle, quiet pain was really sad and heart-wrenching. Even the prologue is really emotional, with Crowfeather reliving Feathertail’s death, and then leaving Leafpool.
Anyways, soon after, Crowfeather meets with his mother, and you can basically feel his joy and pain as if you were in his paws. Same with when he reunites with Feathertail, thinks Nightcloud dies, how valiantly and courageous he pads into the unknown to grasp any last hope that she’s still alive, how he forgives Breezepelt and battles the stoats with him, than how desperate and pained he is when he’s badly injured…and when Feathertail saves him from freezing to death in the snow; well, that’s described beautifully to say at the least.

Feathertail! Warmth spread through Crowfeather from ears to tail-tip, as if he were basking in the sun of greenleaf.
She saved me! Injured and unconscious in the snow, he would have frozen to death if no cat had found him.
-Crowfeather’s Trial, page 258

The emotions even continue in the manga, when Crowfeather is made deputy, and while he is happy, he’s also anxious if he will be good. Breezepelt comforts his father, and tells him he will be absolutely wonderful, which gives Crowfeather the confidence he needs to step up as deputy and maybe even become leader of WindClan one day. Crowstar!

3. The adorable father-son moments between Crowfeather and Breezepelt
These moments add the perfect amount of sweet into the story to balance out the bitterness of the battle and coming danger.

Breezepelt nodded, his breath coming in harsh gasps as if he couldn’t manage to speak. “Thanks, Crowfeather,” he rasped. “I can’t believe how strong you were, attack that last stoat!”
Crowfeather let out a snort. “Nor can I. I have no idea where that came from. Maybe it was seeing my kit attacked!”
Breezepelt’s tail curled up with amusement, but there was warmth in his gaze. “If you hadn’t been there,” he mewed, “I’m not sure what would have happened. But I doubt I’d be here to tell the story!”
“Are you okay?” Crowfeather asked. Breezepelt’s throat was bleeding, but not too badly; it looked as if the stoat’s fangs hadn’t sunk in deep.
“Fine,” Breezepelt replied. “You?”
Crowfeather nodded.
-Crowfeather’s trail, page 379

Here’s another!
“I don’t doubt you,” Crowfeather continued, realizing with a jolt of surprise that what he had said was true. “Whatever you need…you have my support.”
-Crowfeather to Breezepelt (Thanks to my brilliant memory, I’ve forgotten which page this was on :P)
Aaand another!
Breezepelt said nothing. He only ducked his head awkwardly, but the warmth in his eyes told Crowfeather all he needed to know. As he padded along beside his son, their pelts brushing, Crowfeather felt an answering warmth welling up inside him.
This is what it must feel like to be a real father, he thought.
-Crowfeather’s trail, page 365

Ahh that one is so sweet!! 💖

Crowfeather felt an unexpected surge of affection for Breezepelt. He was such a surly difficult furball sometimes, but he was trying so hard to redeem himself. If Breezepelt could do it, so could he. I can tell my son how I feel about him.
Crowfeather headed toward his son, who turned to gaze at him. Breezepelt opened his jaws, clearly about to speak, but before he could utter a word, his legs folded under him and he collapsed limply to the ground.
Crowfeather darted to Breezepelt’s side. He saw blood pooling beneath him, and, gently turning him over, saw a nasty bite on his belly, as if the stoat had torn his flesh away. The wound had been concealed when Breezepelt was standing upright. Blood trickled through his matted fur. Crowfeather lost his breath as he realised how serious this could be.
-Crowfeather’s Trial, page 385

 

Again, the emotion is great! I love how affectionate Crowfeather feels towards Breezepelt; that makes the moment sweet. And I can picture the moment Breezepelt collapses so vividly, and Crowfeather’s panic is described really well.
And this one, below, is my favorite one:

 

“How do you feel?” Crowfeather asked. “You’ve been really ill. We were all worried about you.”
“I’m fine…,” Breezepelt murmured, he raised his head and looked around him, blinking in vague surprise to see the sleeping kestrelflight and the darkness outside. “You’ve been here all night?” he asked.
“Yes, well…” Crowfeather felt uncomfortable as he realized that Breezepelt was touched to see him there. “Heathertail was watching over you,” he went on rapidly, “but she got so exhausted that I talked her into going for a rest. She and Nightcloud will be back at dawn to see how you are.”
“That’s good,” Breezepelt responded. “Heathertail is…amazing.”
“She certainly is,” Crowfeather agreed.
“I can’t believe she actually wants to be with me,” Breezepelt continued, a bewildered but happy expression on his face.
“Why on earth not?” Crowfeather touched Breezepelt’s shoulder with his tail- tip. “You’re a loyal WindClan warrior, and one of the bravest.”
Breezepelt met his gaze, disbelief in his eyes. “You really believe that?”
“I really do.”
-Crowfeather’s Trial, page 407

4. Crowfeather and Leafpool realizing their relationship
This part is so amazing!! Crowfeather finally moves on, realizing there is no time like the present, and that he has a wonderful family in his own Clan. He admits to himself that he didn’t love Leafpool like a mate anymore, and he knows and accepts that Leafpool doesn’t love him any more either. This realization is very inspiring for me, and it holds a good message as well, as Crowfeather sets himself free from the shadows of his past, and realises where his heart truly lies. Crowfeather and Leafpool are SO much better as friends than as mates, in my opinion, and Crowfeather’s Trial proves that right!

5. Admitting, apologizing, good life lessons
Crowfeather’s Trial is chock full of amazing life lessons. From learning from your mistakes, admitting them, and apologizing for them, no matter how much pride and honor you loose with it when it’s the right thing to do, to symbolizing how to end an unhappy relationship healthily, like how Crowfeather and Nightcloud worked it out without yelling and screaming and hurting each other emotionally or physically. A good example of how to end a relationship healthily! To knowing when to do the right thing, like when Crowfeather went to get ThunderClan’s help after Onestar stupidly forbade him from doing so. Getting help was the right thing to do and Crowfeather did it despite knowing he was going against his leader. He did it to save his Clanmates. To learning to let go of old pains, like Crowfeather and Leafpool breaking up. To learning to be a loving, kind cat, even when it goes against how you want others to see you. Most Warriors books are full of bad messages, but Crowfeather’s Trial is the exact opposite.

6. It’s funny! 😂
Crowfeather’s Trial made me laugh so many times! When I was feeling really sad about moving and leaving my old home, reading Crowfeather’s Trial somehow always made me happy again!
When Hootpaw thinks he sees a ghost, and then gossips to the whole Clan and Crowfeather is so exasperated at that, especially when he finds out Onestar believes the story too! Or when Heathertail fiercely sticks up for Breezepelt, scolding the older warriors like they were kits! Or how awkward Crowfeather feels around Breezepelt and is unsure how to be a good father! Or when Breezepelt acts like a fierce lion around Heathertail, all puffed up and proud but deflats and acts like a bunny when she isn’t around! Or how Crowfeather says he would have died in embarrassment if his own father, Deadfoot, had talked to him about she-cats like he was doing with Breezepelt. Or how Crowfeather feels jealous of Pickle the kittypet when he’s affectionate with Nightcloud.
All these are so funny and bright and never fail to make me smile 🙂

7. A background romance: Heather x Breeze
Yep! Background romance in the Warriors books are usually the best kinds of romances! Usually, they have better development, and it’s refreshing to read about a ship that the book doesn’t revolve around. Breezepelt and Heathertail’s relationship is like that! It’s a healthy and cute couple, and it’s so emotional how Breezepelt thinks that she’d never want to be with him. 🥺

8. The adorable Feather x Crow moments!!
Guess who loves Feather x Crow? This apprentice! 😁
There are two absolutely adorable scenes of Feathertail and Crowfeather! They are just so sweet and I love how loyal they remain to each other and how much they still love each other after all those moons apart. So romantic and so cute! :3

He stared as the undergrowth parted and a silver tabby she-cat stepped into the open. Her plumy tail was raised high, and her blue eyes glowed with love for him.
“Greetings, Crowfeather,” she mewed.
“Feathertail!” Crowfeather breathed out. Astonishment and disbelief gripped him like giant claws, and the ache of loss awoke again in his heart. “Is it really you?”
[…] Crowfeather stood still, stunned by shock, while Feathertail padded forward, twined her tail with his, and nuzzled him affectionately. He could feel the warmth of her pelt and the taste of her sweet scent as it wreathed around him. He could hardly believe this was only a dream.
“I’ve missed you,” he choked out.
“I’ve missed you too.” Feathertail took a pace back and looked deeply into Crowfeather’s eyes.
-Crowfeather’s Trial, pages 196 and 197

(The other Feather x Crow moment is listed above! <3)

9. It means a lot to me
Crowfeather’s Trial is a book that has a lot of love and meaning to me. Not only did it cheer me up when I needed it, but my paperback version of this book has accompanied me on lots of trips. When I visited my grandma, I took a photo of this book with almost every single cat I met! And boy were there a lot of cats! When I was feeling homesick, this book cheered me up, and we had lots of fun with my best friend there with the book, and my whole family. And Pine, the hen enjoyed pecking at the book. :3
It has lots of emotional value for me. 🙂

10. Breezepelt and Lionblaze!
I love how Breezzepelt swallowed his pride and apologized to Lionblaze. Then they fought side by side and Breezepelt even saved his former rival’s life. I think it was sweet how they earned some respect for each other and became buddies. :3

11. …(hang on, I forgot what I was going to put here…AH, I know!) The manga
I already mentioned this a little above, but I have to say it again, because I didn’t mention the great art! The manga was drawn beautifully and I think it was really cute how Breezepelt and Crowfeather seemed like really good buddies. And, like mentioned above, it was really cool seeing how Crowfeather was made deputy! He really deserved it!

12. No deaths
I have a really big problem with deaths in the Warrior series. Why is there the need to kill off brilliant characters with lots of potential every few pages? Why is it impossible to feel hope that a beloved friend might survive when they are going to be killed off anyways, no matter how much the other cats try and hope. This stuff drains my energy a lot, which is why reading Crowfeather’s Trial was the BEST.
If I recall correctly, Crowfeather’s Trial didn’t have any deaths. WHICH IS AMAZING. Even better: A character ACTUALLY survived when believed dead. Which happens basically never in the warriors books. There was a little bit of hope Nightcloud was still alive after claimed dead. But I didn’t have much belief in it at all, after reading other Warriors novels. And guess what? Nightcloud is actually alive! She did actually survive! Reading that was one of the best feelings in the world.

Well, there you have it! All the reason Crowfeather’s Trial is my favorite Warriors book! Now, before we end this article, I’d like to squeeze in a little defending, because plenty of people hate Crowfeather’s Trial. I don’t think those reasons are exactly fair, so I’d like to prove them wrong and hopefully paint this book in a new light. 🙂

Reason one. Crowfeather’s Trial is really biased.

bi·ased

unfairly prejudiced for or against someone or something.
“we will not tolerate this biased media coverage”

I don’t really get how Crowfeather’s Trial is biased. It’s not really unfair against anyone or anything. I guess you could say it’s unfair for Crowfeather, because she shouldn’t have to feel pressured to make up and apologize to Breezepelt, or Nightcloud. I personally don’t think that;s true. Crowfeather wasn’t a good mate. He wasn’t a good father. Ashfoot and Feathertail were trying to make sure Breezepelt didn’t turn evil again, and that Crowfeather didn’t have to be worried about being a bad father. They wanted him to have a good and healthy relationship with his son, and that’s all. Nothing biased about that.

Reason two. Breezepelt’s redemption is horrible.
So many people think this. No, Breezepelt’s redemption wasn’t all that horrible. Yes, it could have been done better. But, once again, all I can say is compared to other redemptions, Breezepelt’s was pretty well done! The emotions were great and he had to touch his past mistakes and bring them up again. He apologized for what he did and changed. It’s not a bad redemption. It’s not that good either, but that’s okay! It’s a book about cats fighting in a forest; no one should have such high expectations for a stunning redemption arc, in my opinion.

Reason three. It made Crowfeather and Breezepelt into uncharacteristic cuddly sweet sunshiny characters. How horrible!!
No, it didn’t. It made them into more open-minded and considerate, kind characters. Being kind and loving doesn’t make you a disgusting being. It wasn’t too out of character either. Crowfeather was shown to be loving and gentle before. And Breezepelt never was bad. He just let his hate get to him. That’s all I can say here.

Okay, that’s all! I hope you enjoyed reading this article! What are your thoughts on Crowfeather’s Trial? What’s your favorite Warriors book, and why?
Have an amazing day! See you at the next gathering!
Mountainpaw is out! 😀
-🏔️🐾

 

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30 comments

  • Great article Mountainpaw! You made a lot of good points! 😀
    Although, I ship LeafXCrow and always will 😛
    Crowfeather’s Trial isn’t my first fav super edition, but it’s one of the better ones for sure 😀

  • IMAGINE IS CROWFEATHER WENT VILLIAN MODE AND THEN MADE A BLOODCLAN XD Bramblestar would think hes Scourge 😛

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