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Abandoned six-year-old Amy is rescued by an FBI agent who hides her in the Oregon hills, from which Amy emerges a century later to save the human race from a terrifying virus.
Abandoned six-year-old Amy is rescued by an FBI agent who hides her in the Oregon hills, from which Amy emerges a century later to save the human race from a terrifying virus.
Posted June 24, 2010
I loved The Passage. It was shocking, suspenseful, intriguing, complex, filled with terror, horror, deceit, perseverance, and love.
It begins in the future with the U.S. still at war with terror. The military is secretly attempting to bioengineer the 'perfect' soldier using death row inmates that no one will notice has gone missing. The inmates infected with the bioengineered virus escape and wreak havoc throughout the U.S. Ironically the Gulf of Mexico is referrenced as being so thick with oil that you could walk across it without getting wet. I can't imagine anyone not loving this book. I recommend it to everyone.
56 out of 58 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 4, 2010
In the beginning, I loved this book. Midway...a little less and the end...not so much.
For 640 pages I expect a bit of conclusion, parts of this book felt like a task. It got long winded at times and gave me details that did not add or enhance the story, but seemed more for bulk.
In the beginning the characters are well developed and interesting, the characters become less the later they are introduced. The story implies a mystery that you will be informed of and many of these things are never explained.
I like series reading as well as anyone, but I expect each book to have a point and be a complete story. I do not like it when it feels as though you stretch one book to a possible 12, with no warning and a feeling of incompleteness.
The plot has great potential and lots of creativity, however it was not as well developed as I hoped and thought it would be based on the beginning of the book.
54 out of 67 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 22, 2010
At 766 pages, The Passage, at first glance, can appear to be quite the undertaking. Don't let the length of this book scare you away. By page 25, you'll be unable to put it down, but wanting to at the same time, just so you can tell everyone how much you love this book.
I could compare this to The Stand, The Book of Eli, I am Legend, 28 Days Later, and countless other books and movies, but I prefer to review it as it is meant to be read: a solitary work. I won't give anything away, I hate "reviews" that are actually plot synopsis and spoilers. This is a post-apocalyptic journey that is rewarding to the end and will have you contemplating the story for days and days after you've read the last word.
There were a few slow spots, as expected in a book that spans a century, but they weren't cumbersome, and you can easily navigate through to the next nail-biting bit.
I absolutely loved this book. The story and writing style are perfect for me. If you like books that tie up every loose end and present you with a pretty little package when you've finished reading, this is not the book for you. If you prefer to let your imagination take flight, to leave your world behind, plunging into a fictional escape, then you will thoroughly enjoy this novel.
46 out of 50 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 28, 2010
Close your eyes and put yourself far into the future. Imagine a newly discovered virus is being experimented with, that the people experimenting with it are the military. That out of twelve experiments they've created human-vampire-like monsters. Beings that glow, that fear light, that live off the blood of humans and animals, that kill and massacre and destroy the entire North American continent. That no one will survive their bloodlust, except a handful of the population, living in a Colony in California. So goes The Passage.
Epically long, fantastically detailed, The Passage starts with the discovery of the virus and the creation of Project NOAH and takes us on an insanely intense journey. It's the end of the world as we know it, and Cronin has created our destruction. But he's also created our heros, a band of survivors from the Colony who embark on a journey to find the source of a signal. A signal imbedded in a chip implanted at the base of the neck of a young girl named Amy. A girl who doesn't speak, but sees and knows. A special girl.
With Amy, a few survivors must risk their lives to save the world. The first part of a trilogy, The Passage is headed to the bestseller list and beyond. There's a reason the buzz is so loud about this book: it's amazing. It's dark and suspenseful; it's not a lighthearted read and many people die, but there is hope. There is always hope. And love, and destiny.
It is impossible not to be immersed in the story, fully living with the characters and the things that happen to them. The virals are everywhere, and you can feel them in the dark, you fear for the lights to go out. Cronin has created an alter-universe where his imagination knows no bounds, but is creatively reigned in by the plot. Truly remarkable, this is a phenomenal book, thrilling and captivating, and the future movie had better do it justice.
June 8, 2010. Mark that day on your calendars. Pre-order, get to the store, do whatever you want to get the book, but know that if you don't, you'll find yourself left in the dark. Read it and then wait, like me, for 2012 (The Twelve) and 2014 (The City of Mirrors).
45 out of 55 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 5, 2010
This book isn't the kind of book I would normally pick up, however I am a Stephen King fan and this book would fit well into his genre! I hate reviews that give away so much that you might as well not even read the book, so I'll just say this: apocalyptal. It made me think of the movie 28 Days Later, "The Stand" by Stephen King, The tv show "Jericho", and some elements of "The Village" by M. Knight. This book kept me up late at night. I'm glad the plan is for more!It's a good thriller that sucks you in!
35 out of 37 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 5, 2010
When I received this book, I started to read the first few pages, even though I was in the middle of another book and was not able to yet devote my full attentions. Although I had only read a few pages, I found myself constantly thinking about it and eager to start.
For those reading this review, let me tell you that I would *not* categorize this book as a "vampire" book as so many have done. Not only is this really a mischaracterization of the novel and its characters, I believe it also diminishes what Justin Cronin has done in creating this epic tale.
The book is analogous to I Am Legend in that it starts in real life and science ("light" science fiction), and, although using elements of the supernatural, focuses on humans, the human perspective and struggles, and how humans might operate in an extreme situation.
The first 200 pages are spectacular. Cronin perfectly sets up the tragedy that will befall the essentially current world. His descriptions of all of the characters are impressive. I found myself attached to many, some of who only graced the book for a relatively short amount of pages. Although the novel initially has several origins and characters with nothing (yet) in common, each line of the story was intriguing and clear, eventually coming together seamlessly.
The next portion is very good to great. The story is set a bit in the future, after the "tragedy" has settled in the world -- one that is dealing with the consequences of its ancestors. I know I am being somewhat vague here, but I believe this novel would be best read with the least amount of information possible. These pages draw the reader into the daily lives of the characters and their motivations, actions, feelings, fears, and attachments -- without slowing the novel too much. Cronin, again, does an impressive job making his characters real, with real human qualities -- both the good and the bad.
The final portion, the "climax", is, again, fantastic and wonderfully paced. I did not stop reading these last pages until the novel was complete. The ending is satisfying, yet it ensures that the reader will be eager for the next installment in this epic trilogy.
I highly recommend.
FOR THOSE INTERESTED IN A SUMMARY, WHICH I CONSIDER ***SPOILER***, see the remainder of the review at tometombfidelity.blogspot.com
25 out of 29 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 28, 2010
This book started out great, but somewhere along the way (about a third into it), it lost all its greatness and I wound up wishing I had never started it.
23 out of 32 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 26, 2010
This book was difficult to get into. I am on page 300 and I have read 6 books by the time I started this one. I am trynig very hard to move on but once you get interested in the characters i.e. Amy then they switch characters all over and SO SLOW AMG to slow.
23 out of 50 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 31, 2010
When I bought my Nook, I mentioned that I enjoy Stephen King. The Passage was highly recommended by the lady who sold me my Nook. As soon as I got it home and charged, I was riveted. I really enjoyed the book, but the ending was a HUGE HUGE HUGE let down. Not happy, not sad, just ended. It was almost like he just got bored of writing and said "the end." Unless you are OK with let down endings, I would waste my time on the 800+ pages.
17 out of 30 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 24, 2010
I was really looking forward to reading this book since it had some really great reviews. However, I was really not captivated by the story. There were way too many characters and I found myself wanting it to end so I could start something new. I thought about not finishing it, but I convinced myself there would be some thrilling surprise ending, but it never came. Since the book was so long, I feel like I wasted a lot of my summer reading something I didn't like. It definitely had potential, but I expected much more.
16 out of 22 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Just finished reading THE PASSAGE, and was left frustrated and unsatisfied. Yeah, it's supposed to be THE big read of the summer. It felt like a cheat. Questions are left unanswered (not those to possibly be addressed in part two of what is expected to be a trilogy), characters who "die" at the end of a chapter may not really have died. Characters disappear for hundreds of pages to suddenly become pivotal to the story. There are several deus ex machina events that left my thinking, "Huh, how could THAT have happened?"
The plot line...THE STAND/ANDROMEDA STRAIN meets DRACULA meets George Romero's various takes on THE lIVING DEAD meets 28 DAYS/WEEKS LATER with a little MAD MAX tossed in for good measure.
The author has the ability to move the action along at a brisk pace and does so several times but often gets bogged down in irrelevant minutiae, slowing the story. There came a point when I felt I'd already put too much time into the book to not finish it, despite my temptation to put it down and walk away with a big, "Who cares?"
The use of excerpts from journals and e-mails make a nice change of viewpoint and are actually the most poignant passages of the entire book.
A much better read on the same general subject was WORLD WAR Z, with it's dark humor, satire and significantly better action sequences.
14 out of 22 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 5, 2010
I Also Recommend:
I agree with Stephen King when he said this about 'The Passage'. "Every so often a novel-reader's novel comes along: an enthralling, entertaining story wedded to simple, supple prose, both informed by tremendous imagination. Read fifteen pages and you will find yourself captivated; read thirty and you will find yourself taken prisoner and reading late into the night. It has the vividness that only epic works of fantasy and imagination can achieve. What else can I say? This: read this book and the ordinary world disappears."
Justin Cronin had me crying, already. This fantastic book begins with the story of Amy NLN. It tells us who her mother was, the sacrifices that she made for Amy from the love that only a mother could have for her child, and finally how she ended in the hands of Wolgast.
Wolgast is a federal agent who works for the government. He has suffered a loose as well, which makes him into the man that he is when he, Doyle, and Amy meet. This lose allows him to connect to Amy in a way that no other person can.
Scientists return from the Amazonian jungle, with the hopes of prolonging human life. What they actually bring back is something much more evil and disastrous than their good intentions could ever deliver to the world.
When the Twelve escape from Colorado, the story jumps 94 years into the future. (It was a bit of a jolt and an unexpected surprise that left me with some questions. What happened in the meantime?) A new narrator tells her story and slowly answers a few of the questions of how and what happened to the world in the meantime. (This book is true of it's not the destination that's the reward, but the journey itself that's the jewel.)
The stars are gone. You are scared to death of the dark and of night. You are ready for responsibilities and training at the age of eight. You know nothing of the world or of its history and past, because of the extremely limited resources and books within the compound. But when a mysterious 15 or 16 year old girl shows up at your gates, a questionable radio signal is established that will answer one question and lead to so many more.
Because the batteries are going dead for good, (They were never made to be recharged indefinitely. They were made to be replaced.), they are forced to go out beyond their protective gate and walls. What will they find? Are there others out there like them, living in a tiny world inside their own protective walls? Why did the army not return for them? Who is Amy, and how can a 16 year old girl save them and the world from the Twelve?
Justin Cronin had me saying out loud, "W. T.. F.?!" I'm hopeful that he will write another book as a sequel to this, or even one to fill in the blanks in the jump in time of over 90 years.
14 out of 16 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 25, 2010
This book starts like gangbusters. The initial characters are set up in such an interesting way that I felt compelled to keep reading. But right around the 300 page mark the entire book veers so far off track that it could never recover. Cronin went for epic when he should have just let the story flow. He chose to ignore what should have been the most interesting aspect of the book in favor of creating a Stephen Kingish story...only one with so many plot holes, unanswered questions and dropped story lines that it becomes a complete distraction and kept pulling me out of the world he was trying to create.
I finished the book because Cronin does write certain types of actions scenes fairly well. So when I would get to a point where I was about to put it down, I'd find a 30 or 40 page sequence interesting enough to keep me in the game. But then Cronin would meander. Especially troubling is the significant lack of time devoted to the antagonists in the story.
I feel this book could have been terrific. I feel like the first act was as good as any in this genere. But I also feel that Cronin neeeded to have gotten out of his own way.
13 out of 18 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
I actually created an account to warn people from buying this book! I was about to buy another book when I overheard a rave review on "The Passage" and I thought I would give it a try. The author starts off well and then it is as if someone else picks up the story and turns it into a bad Hollywood chase scene. There are huge plot gaps,not to mention the main character being a mild afterthought. I finsihed only because of the time I had invested in it.
13 out of 25 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 14, 2010
I read about a 3rd of the way through the book and couldn't take it anymore. And a book really has to turn me off to make me do that. This was just ramblings on and on without a point. I would not suggest this book to anyone. I am not sure what you all saw in it but it wasn't there for me at all. The parts where the character is talking about being put on the train. Oh my word could you have made that any longer. I don't think so. This is a summer read alright because it will take you that long to force yourself to get though it.
10 out of 20 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 3, 2010
"The Passage" by Justin Cronin is so much more than any kind of vampire book you've read before. Do not be fooled by the labeling of his creatures as vampires because they share very little with the literary and mythological creatures of old. Cronin has created a world with such life-like characters and creatures that the story will terrify you as much as it envelopes you.
To say this book is a thrilling summer read may be an understatement. It will be hard for other authors to compete with this book for the summer read, it would be hard to come close. Cronin has written a book that has bridged a gap few others have- that is the gap between horror and contemporary fiction. Some see the horror genre as a suburb of a bigger fiction genre. This is a sad fact, but books like this bridge that gap.
Cronin's masterful prose and enthralling storyline drag you in and won't let go. You'll find yourself worried about the characters when you aren't reading. When you finish this book you will turn the last page feeling that you have traveled in the same footsteps as the characters only to wish there were more miles to travel. This book is about finding hope in hopelessness and courage in a landscape riddled with terror. And, ultimately, this book is about the love and perseverance that humans have when all else seems lost. If this book is not on your list this summer, It's time to pick up the pencil, erase whatever is at the top of yours, and make this the book to read.
10 out of 11 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
THE PASSAGE is a huge book, over 700 pages, but the journey is well worth your time! This isn't your typical vampire novel, however if you enjoy epic novels featuring interesting, in depth characters that are thrown into perilous situations and have to use their brains and ingenuity to overcome almost impossible obstacles, this will thrill you to no end, as it did me!
"The Passage" begins in the tumultuous future, with the introduction of the story's main character, a mysterious little girl named Amy. There is the collapse of civilization, a miracle virus, and experimentation gone wrong as now monstrous beings escape from prison spreading a plaque throughout American civilization. This is not for the faint of heart!
9 out of 9 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 4, 2010
I am a very avid reader, and love to "get lost" in books. However, I wish I had passed this one up. It seems as if Cronin got paid by the word, introducing us to even the most minuscule and obscure characters and expecting us to remember every one of them, going into completely unnecessary details just to take up space. In doing so, he left so many loose ends at the end that I was actually convinced that my nook didn't download the whole book. Alas, I had reached the 836th page, and none of my questions were answered. It seems like he ran out of time/money/space and just decided to end the book. It was a huge disappointment. There is a way to be crafty and enigmatic in ending a book, leaving the reader to make his or her own conclusions, but I was just left angry and without closure and more confused than I should be after delving into an 800 page + book.
I also feel like a book should have one, two, or, maybe as a stretch, even three main characters, not 10 to 15. My primary problem with this is that I didn't feel like any of them got the attention that they should have in having the reader identify with them; Cronin was too busy going into the dozen or so sub-plots that had NOTHING to do with the overall story. Most didn't relate in the slightest bit, and left me scratching my head thinking "Why was it necessary to tell me this mundane detail?" I kept reading on with the hope that the end would offer an earth-shattering conclusion, thereby tying all the details together--it didn't. Not by a long shot. It seemed like Cronin simply forgot--forgot characters, forgot details, forgot doors that he opened. After such a long book, I shouldn't be left feeling like I got gypped.
9 out of 19 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
There has been some points on punctuation and the like, but for my money, it is kind of hard to believe Justin Cronin is a more 'literary' author than say Stephen King. King himself, who endorsed the book, aggrandized this guy's talent and the quality of the work overall. In my opinion, this isn't any better than what the duo Preston and Child churn out. Having won the PEN/Hemingway, I figured stylistically this author would be on par with Margaret Atwood, Ian McEwan or Kazuo Ishiguro; instead, I was underwhelmed and left wondering how his other work was so recognized. This isn't all bad; there was Oprah's endorsement of 'Pillars...', which was one of the worst books I ever tried to read and the reason I would never buy an Oprah book club nominee again without researching it fully; but this is not that good either. Thematically it is flat and tired, and stylistically it is boring--and incidentally doesn't outdo King, who, when he's settling in and being conscientious is a darn good writer himself. If you're going to drop the pretense and thrill us, do it ala King's 'Under the Dome'. The idea that this is any more than a perfunctorily written, hackneyed novel that doesn't live up to the hype is pure delusion. For a real compelling read, and one that isn't being touted as horror by Graham Greene, try reading 'The Descent' by Jeff Long.
9 out of 20 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 24, 2010
I Also Recommend:
I'm by no means a 'vampire' fan, but this story has great characters, intensity and was fun to read in a 'car taking hairpin turns at 100-miles an hour sort of way'. It held my attention from start to finish and that takes good characters, plot and style. Read it and enjoy!
6 out of 8 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.