Monday, July 26, 2010

The Passage by Justin Cronin

The Passage
by Justin Cronin
Ebook (B&N)
Ballantine Books / Random House

Rating (on a scale of 1-5, with 5 being best)
Plot: 4.5
Characters: 3.5
Writing: 4
Final: 4
Comments: I bought this on a whim, and I can't remember which tweet or blog post piqued my interest. I'd seen a lot of both regarding this book, but one in particular pushed me over the edge and got me to buy it. I knew very little about it and I had no idea how long it was. To be honest, I don't know if I would have ended up buying it as a print book. I would have known right off the bat how long it was, and that can sometimes kill a whim. Most distressingly, I didn't know it was the first of a trilogy! I got to the end and thought "Huh. Either I really missed something or that was a pretty vague way to end that." (Obviously, I am a genius.)

I really enjoyed the story--it was suspenseful and creepy. Way too long, though. I can't believe there are two more whole books coming: on the one hand, like the idea of getting back into this world; on the other, I just think "Ugh. 800 more pages?"

See also the review by Bibliolatry: The long, mostly interesting (but very long) passage.

Publisher's description
“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.


  1. I love your rating system. It's so true. You can love a plot and hate the writing, and the rating feels like a washed-out compromise.

  2. Thanks, Robin. To be completely honest, I started the rating system to save time -- I'm always woefully behind on my reviews! But what you said is exactly why I didn't just go with one overall rating.