Book Reviews: The Passage

Thursday, September 9, 2010

The Passage
by Justin Cronin

A military experiment gone wrong leaves the world in ruins. A virus is accidentally released on the public, creating vicious monsters. The survivors are left to try to maintain some semblance of civilization. That's an incredibly simple summary of the plot, but there are so many reviews of this one out there that I'm not going to go into more detail.

My favorite parts of the book were the sections that gave us the characters' back-stories. The "thrilling" action sections left me a bit cold. So even though I really loved some parts of the book, there were just too many chapters that I wasn't interested in. I think that the first 250 pages were great and the last 250 were pretty great, but there's another 250 pages in the middle, which drag the whole book down.

The frustrating thing about this novel is that it truly feels like Cronin took two separate books and crammed them together into one. You get used to one style of writing, setting and group of characters and then the author hits the restart button. I did enjoy his writing style, but I don't know if that's enough to make me read the rest of the series when it comes out. By the end of the book I was attached to many of the "new" characters, just not enough to leave me desperate to know what happens to them.

"The lie had worked so far, but Lacey felt its softness like a floor of rotten boards beneath her feet."

p.s. Isn't it interesting how different the UK cover (on the right) is from the American cover.


B said...

I've got to get around to reading this. Thanks for your review.

Jessica said...

I found that after the first part it just never picked up for me. Its a shame as the first 250 pages were really really good. As a result I wont be reading the rest of the trilogy.

Tasha said...

I'm curious about this book but find the length daunting. 250 pages sound great, but 500? That is a stretch.

She said...

I've seen so many reviews about this one, but I'm still undecided on whether I want to pick it up yet. :/ :/

Melissa (Avid Reader) said...

Charley - It's more than 750 pages, but only about 400 of those are really good.

She - I would make sure it's something that really sounds good to you. I don't think I would have picked it up if I hadn't gotten caught up in the hype.

Jeanne said...

Hmm, I had thought about this an an audiobook, but that could be agonizing if only 400 out of the 750 pages are good!

Melissa (Avid Reader) said...

Jeanne - The audiobook is 29 discs. I listened to the first 12 and then switched to a hard copy. It's a beast to get through in audio.