Book Review: The Passage by Justin Cronin

Deep in the jungles of eastern Colombia, Professor Jonas Lear has finally found what he's been searching for- and wishes to God he hadn't.
In Memphis Tennessee, a six year old girl called Amy is left at the convent of the Sisters of Mercy and wonders why her mother has abandoned her.
In a maximum security jail in Nevada, a convicted murderer called Giles Babcock has the same strange nightmare, over and over again while he waits for a lethal injection.
In a remote community in the Californian mountains, a young man called Peter waits for his beloved brother to return home so he can kill him.
Bound together in ways they cannot comprehend, for each of them a door is about to open on a future they could not have imagined. And a journey is about to begin. An epic journey that will take them through a world transformed by man's darkest dreams, to the very heart of what it means to be human.
And beyond. 
You cannot escape the fact that The Passage is huge, at 766 pages, it's only in hardback at the moment too which makes it feel even bigger. I loved the cover of this book but I have to say that it wasn't a book that you could just pop into your bag and it was far too heavy for bath reading.
I did enjoy it though and I can see what most of the hype is about. I had already ordered the book when I learned about the vampire element of it; it wouldn't have put me off as I am quite partial to the odd vampire but it may have stopped others from reading it. Justin Cronin's vampires are not the traditional sort, there's no swirling capes or changing into bats. However, the vampires in The Passage are terrifying creations able to tear a human up in seconds without any control over their desire to do so.
The Passage is a page turner but I will admit that I found the first part of the book far more gripping than the second. Cronin introduces the characters and sets up the events in the first part, the subsequent parts of the book have a very different feel to them and there were some parts that felt like a bit of a chore to get through.
If you like a good paced thriller then you will very much enjoy The Passage. Justin Cronin has written a very clever and powerful book which looks at the many aspects of human nature. Juts prepare yourself for the long haul and no reading in the bath, it's worth it though!


Irena @ This Miss Loves to Read said...

Wow! Great review, you really got me hooked! I am putting this on my wishlist

Charlie said...

I'm really unsure about whether I want to read this because I know how long it's taken others to get through it, but the plot sounds good and reading something other than Twilight is appealing. I guess I'll get to it one day!

Dot said...

Irena- Thank you, hope that you enjoy it, it's long but worth it!

Charlie- I was undecided but I'm glad that I read it!

Book Chick City said...

I bought this one a week or so ago and it's the size of it that keeps me putting it on the back burner, but it does sound really good. I also like to read in the bath and I agree, this would be a tad difficult ;)

Glad you enjoyed it overall.

Dot said...

Book Chick City- Glad it's not just me who reads in the bath!! I had to find a bit of time to read this but it was good, think you'll enjoy it!

Anonymous said...

Glad that you sort of enjoyed it, I think you did? What would you give it out of ten just out of interest?

I think the fact I had reading breaks in between different parts really helped as to read in one go would be a slog. There is lots of 'travelling about' which is needed but was a bit like the endless camping in one of the Harry Potter books which was genius apart from that bit.

Dot said...

Simon- I did enjoy it, I think I would probablly give it 8 out of 10. I wish I could read more than one book at a time as I think I may have benefited going away and coming back to it. Overall though I can see why it is getting such positive reviews.

Nadia said...

Great review, Dot! And I completely agree with you about the second half of the book - it dragged a bit compared to the first half which really just flowed. But overall, it was a very satisfying read! I can't wait for the next installment in the series!

Dot said...

Nadia- It's good to hear that it wasn't just me, I think I shall definitely read the next one though!

Anonymous said...

This wouldn't be the type of book that I would normally read, but after reading your review I am tempted. It's definintly one to think about!

Dot said...

MadlyBumBle- Thanks for visiting my blog, it was quite different from some of the stuff that I normally read but ever so good!

BLOG TOUR: In the Dark by Cara Hunter

I'm on the blog tour today for In the Dark by Cara Hunter, it is the second book in the DI Adam Fawley series and I loved it! Here'...