Hello and welcome to my Little Willow blog, well welcome to those who might stumble across it anyway as I have yet to give this address to anyone :) I thought I might try and see how I get along with just writing in it first. It's all a lot of random stuff, but hey, hopefully there'll be something interesting for people

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Book Review - The Passage

I finished this book at the weekend - all 784 pages of it - and that's only book 1 in an intended triology. I will also forewarn you that should you decide you like this review and wish to purchase the book, but in paperback form, it won't be out until 12th May 2011 and will be 944 pages!

So anyway, the synopsis of the book, written by Justin Cronin, is
"Amy Harper Bellafonte is six years old and her mother thinks she’s the most important person in the whole world. She is. Anthony Carter doesn’t think he could ever be in a worse place than Death Row. He’s wrong. FBI agent Brad Wolgast thinks something beyond imagination is coming. It is. THE PASSAGE…"

This synopsis and various others on the internet don't really give much away about what you will find in the book. I think there are about 10 "parts" to the book, but 2 major ones. The first 200 pages or so are set in the near future where experiments are taking place on death row inmates. Following on from this, the book jumps ahead approx 100 years and examines the outcome of these experiments. The experiments created a group of "virals" which could be, and are occasionally, described as vampires. They are humans injected with a virus and appear to have longer than normal life and feed on blood and can infect others.

From reading reviews on Amazon, there is a lot of controversy surrounding this book and you will find that each star rating has attracted a large number of people to it. Many of those giving it a low score felt more engaged in the first half of the book, which admittedly did have more action in it, and it was shame to lose the characters you'd gotten to know over those 200 pages. The second half I would say would be most similar to The Stand by Stephen King in style - form what I've read anyhow, and also The Host by Stephenie Meyer. The story revolves around "survivors" and how a group of people live in this new time, when there are very few people still alive who remember the "Time Before". The story follows this group of misfit people throughout the rest of the book as they try to survive in a world of "virals".

I really loved the book and wanted to read it all the time and just wished of a morning I could get the train all the way to Southport instead of getting off at Moorfields, just so I could keep reading! I enjoyed both parts of the book, although I understand some people's frustration with the second part. It's a particular type of storytelling that I think only appeals to some people, whereas I can imagine some people want the virals to have a much more active role, thereby creating more action.

Highest so far, I give this book 9 out of 10

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