Friday, July 2, 2010
Review: The Passage
The Passage is a novel by Justin Cronin and a Ballantine book.
It happened fast. Thirty-two minutes for one world to die, another to be born.'
First, the unthinkable: a security breach at a secret U.S. government facility unleashes the monstrous product of a chilling military experiment. Then, the unspeakable: a night of chaos and carnage gives way to sunrise on a nation, and ultimately a world, forever altered. All that remains for the stunned survivors is the long fight ahead and a future ruled by fear - of darkness, of death, of a fate far worse.
As civilization swiftly crumbles into a primal landscape of predators and prey, two people flee in search of sanctuary. FBI agent Brad Wolgast is a good man haunted by what he's done in the line of duty. Six-year-old orphan Amy Harper Bellafonte is a refugee from the doomed scientific project that has triggered apocalypse. He is determined to protect her from the horror set loose by her captors. But for Amy, escaping the bloody fallout is only the beginning of a much longer odyssey - spanning miles and decades - towards the time and place where she must finish what should never have begun.
The Passage was submitted for review and I retain my copy.
This is one of the best books I have ever read. :)
The first fourth of The Passage is set not too far in the future - I could never find an actual date, but from the information given - it is after the year 2016.
We find out about a secret experiment - who started it and why, who is funding it and why they are interested in its success.
We meet Amy and she is special - even before the experiment. And we meet Agent Wolgast, who believed in the project - until meeting Amy. And then everything goes wrong.
The next three fourths of the book is set almost 100 years after the story began. We meet a group of people who are trying to survive in a post apocalyptic world - where light is your best weapon against the evil that comes out at night.
The Passage is an emotional roller coaster that kept me on the edge of my seat, eagerly turning pages for more.
I will be honest - there were times when I would say 'oh my' and put the book down, process what happened and then pick it up and read on.
Mr. Cronin has done a wonderful job of writing relate-able characters - people that are so real they come alive on the page. I have often said that when I read, the book unfolds as a movie in my head - and The Passage is no exception. This book came alive for me.
I hope Mr. Cronin is writing a sequel. The ending was left open and there is more story to tell.
I give The Passage 5 out of 5 stars and wish my review system was higher - because this one is a 10 and definitely going on my keeper shelf.