Thursday, July 22, 2010

The Passage by Justin Cronin

Book Details
The Passage by Justin Cronin
Hardcover, 784 Pages
2010, Ballantine Books
ISBN: 0345504968

“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.

With The Passage, award-winning author Justin Cronin has written both a relentlessly suspenseful adventure and an epic chronicle of human endurance in the face of unprecedented catastrophe and unimaginable danger. Its inventive storytelling, masterful prose, and depth of human insight mark it as a crucial and transcendent work of modern fiction.

The Passage is a hugely epic story bringing together aspects from a variety of genres. A scientifically created vampire virus, military abuse of power, apocalyptic scenario, survival strategy, violence, death, love, birth and everything in between is found between it's covers.

The first and last years of the story are looked at deeply in The Passage with the 100 or so years in between being mentioned only when necessary to the story. The novel can be considered moral, depending on how you deeply you look beyond the words.

The Passage is long - almost 800 pages, but the length is necessary to encompass everything the story is trying to convey. The book is thoroughly engrossing, so much so that I wouldn't have minded if it had been even longer. Reading The Passage caused something akin to a complete shutting out the world. A total apocalyptic event could have happened right around me and I would never had noticed.

The Passage was such an experience to read, so intricate yet subtle that upon finishing the book I immediately wanted to read it again. There is no other way I can describe this book other than absolute perfection. Justin Cronin has written a book that deserves the hype you've seen and then some. Definitely one of the best books of 2010.


Justin Cronin's


  1. Intricate yet subtle? I need it! Great review.

  2. Awesome review Jennifer! I recently bought this one, I'll read it one day. It's just so damn long lol :)

  3. I have this to read during my summer-great review

  4. @Juju - Thanks! It's long, but there is so much great stuff in there that I thin it would be better on a second reading.

    @Eleni - Thank you! The length is definitely intimidating. I borrowed it from the library and was afraid I wouldn't be able to finish it before it was due. No problem there, I couldn't put it down once I started.

    @My 5 Monkeys - Thanks! I hope you love it as much as I did.

  5. Jennifer,

    I loved this one. :) I'm looking forward to the next two in the trilogy.


  6. Wow, this sounds really great! Awesome review :)

  7. Amen!! I just wrote a gushing review of this one earlier in the week. Absolutely loved it. I read it all on my Nook, and while I thought it would take a while, I whipped through it in no time. It wouldn't let me go! I'm glad I overlooked all the hype (because that sort of thing usually scares me) and jumped right in.

  8. Everybody seems to be reading this novel! I'm glad to hear it's fabulous. I love the way you described all the different topics tackled here. It sounds so intriguing. :-)

  9. I'm happy to stumble across your review because I've seen others give mixed thoughts on the book.

    I'm currently reading The Girl Who Played With Fire and it's right there at 720 something pages.

    This book will now be on my to-read list.

  10. I'm going to try to read this one in the fall. I thought about taking it on vacation, but I have an ARC and lugging it on planes seems annoying, especially since I have a Kindle. Maybe October would be a good month for it. Thanks for sharing your enthusiasm for it, Jennifer!

  11. I just won this! Can't wait to read it!

    I've got an award for you here:

  12. Your great review just solidified all the other great things I've heard!

    Teens Read & Write

  13. You've got me interested. I want this book. :-)

  14. I have seen a lot of reviews on this one. Your wonderful review was the deciding factor for me to add this to my TBR list. Great review!!

  15. Great review! I might give it a try again :) Probably over Thanksgiving weekend!

  16. Great review! thogh I dont know if I'd run and get this one...

  17. Yay! This made me really excited to read this. I think I'll read it soon.

  18. @Michelle Greathouse - Me too! I didn't know it was the first of a trilogy until after I read and wrote the review. I'm excited!

    @miss cindy - Thanks!

    @Andi - Me too! I normally would have waited years for the hype to die down first, but the idea was so intriguing that I couldn't resist it.

    @Stephanie - It definitely was.

    @HG - I didn't know those books were so long.

    @Kay - You're welcome! It is rather cumbersome to take anywear. I tried to read it by the pool, but couldn't find a comfortable position. It's definitely a sitting up book.

    @A Simple Love of Reading - Congrats! And thank you!

    @Alyssa Kirk - Thanks!

    @Kah Woei - Hope you love it!

    @Julie P - Great!

    @Felicia - I hope you do! I really liked it.

    @Larissa - Thanks! It definitely isn't for everyone but what is?

    @Jenny - Great! I hope you really enjoy it!

  19. I bought this a while ago and just haven't started due to it's length... However, I have three days off this weekend...

  20. @Tara SG - I found the length very intimidating, but totally worth it. For its length, the pages just flew by too.

  21. I'm glad to hear that it's as good as all the hype about it! I recently purchased this one, so now I can't wait to get started. :)

  22. This one seems to be all the rage right now, it even got my husband back to reading books. I guess I should read it soon...husband keeps pressuring me too and I keep reading great reviews.

  23. @Becky - Hope you love it as much as I did!

    @Kris - Yes, the hype has been huge for The Passage recently, hasn't it? Totally deserved, I think.