Like so many others, I loved The Passage and was counting down the days until The Twelve was available on Audible. Sadly, the book did not live up to my expectations. All the compelling tension of the first book seemed to be missing from this one. The story had its moments, mostly in the second half, but characters that seemed so complex and 3-dimensional in The Passage felt flat. Scott Brick is one of my favorite narrators, but I felt that he contributed to the slow pace of the novel this time. I ended up listening on 1.5X speed which helped move the book along. Will I take on the third book in the trilogy? Probably, but I hope Mr. Cronin listens to his critics.
In terms of being an epic journey, near the top. Certainly this continues the journey started in "The Passage", both adding more detail, plot and complexities, as well rounding out characters and backfilling the story.
The battle scenes are fascinating.
He needs to cover alot of ground, and does a remarkable job in that regard. He is my favourite performer however, so I am naturally biased.
Part 2 of this sprawling series ( I believe it will be a trilogy ) is engrossing ( sometimes gross as well ) and both mystical , almost too much so for it's own good at times, and a wonderful addition to the genre. Most listeners will look me in looking forward to the final installment.
Come to me!!!
I listened to and enjoyed The Passage. The sequel started out with a bunch of pseudo-religious garbage read in exactly the sort of sing song voice you would expect for such nonsense.
Admittedly, I'm not a huge sic-fi fan, but I did enjoy The Passage. I certainly won't continue with either this author or reader.
My favorites are Simon Vance and Simon Preeble (sp?), but I generally enjoy the readers on audible. Not this one.
I would have thrown the whole thing in waste basket after reading the first chapter.
I know it is unfair to write such a negative review after listening to only a half hour or so, but I asked for my credit back on this one.
The first book was very interesting but this one I didn't get the timeline right away and it turned into an unimaginative religious thing I didn't like. I lost interest and never finished it.
Justin Cronin should have more respect for me as a reader. The Passage was my favorite books this year, at least up until Alicia joins the army and Cronin stops writing and starts summarizing and loses his plot. It seems he never found that plot in the second book. I lasted five chapters and decided to stop. My time is precious.
Not write it at all and save the forest. The Passage is a stand alone book. Cronin should have developed the mirrors idea in the last half, as it seemed to be a most crucial plot point. He should have closed the story at the end, and have the virals defeated by the use of mirrors. Trilogies are financially clever, but artistically useless with most stories.
Just read the story, Scott. Give up the constant dramatic tremble. Otherwise, your voice is good and I felt sorry for you, having to read 700 pages of this and trying to give it a meaning.
N/A. Read five chapters and couldn't find the soul in any of the characters.
No more trilogies. If you need more than one book, the story is too long.
Loved the story, but Scott Brick is a very mannered narrator. I hate to say it but his narration detracted from an otherwise great story.
I was so glad when this ended. So tired of listening to it. Should've stopped at book1. There are just too many stories, and too many characters, going on. Difficult to keep track of them all in an audio book. Some scenes are too descriptive, making them longer than necessary.
Eliminated unnecessary characters and their stories.
This book rates way up there with the best I've read. It's a terrific second installment. I too, like others have mentioned in reviews, struggled a bit with the first few chapters . I am so glad I stuck with it because it evolved into the amazing continuation of The Passage.
It is a deep, complicated and huge story. I loved it and am thrilled that there will be yet another part to this amazing trilogy.
Scott Brick does an amazing job narrating and Cronin is an excellent writer. Will check out the next book in the series when it's out and hope it doesn't jump around so much and leave so many empty holes.
The development of the virals is great. The story jumps around quite a bit and is a bit hard to follow at times. Some people in the story are built up, then sort of vanish and you don't hear anything about them. Maybe to be picked back up in the next book? Who knows.
Just as good as the first in the series.
The Twelve is a worthy sequel to The Passage, though it didn't quite keep me up at night like the first book. The imagery and pacing doesn't quite pack the same punch, and if you're not a careful reader some of the most important character relationships can sail right past you. The Passage introduced the reader to a strange new world full of horrors brought to life with vivid imagery and suspenseful chase scenes, whereas The Twelve is told in a series of sorrowful vignettes which only during the last quarter of the book begin to tie together. The Twelve requires a bit more patience to enjoy, though I definitely did.
One of the more entertaining aspects of The Passage was Justin Cronin's skillful employment of tropes. He weaves elements which could easily become cliche into a story that's greater than the sum of it's parts, a Hollywood action movie on literary steroids. In The Twelve, Cronin takes a different approach.
The Twelve is structured more as a biblical parable of sin and redemption (or sin and destruction). The story focuses more on the (non-viral) antagonists; each is given an elaborate backstory full of suffering, each makes a terrible decision in response to their anguish and becomes a monster, then finally each is redeemed or destroyed depending on whether or not they try to right their terrible actions.
This may turn off readers that are expecting another scary sci-fi adventure. The religious references are also dialed way up to 11, which while cute at first might become a little irritating by the end. Finally the characters from the first book generally take a back seat to the new antagonists, and sometimes come off as a little too woodenly "Good".
Scott Brick delivers his performance in a lilting, melancholy voice that's absolutely appropriate for Cronin's prose. In some other books I wonder if Brick doesn't actually interfere with the story by adding pathos the author didn't intend. Not so with The Twelve (or The Passage), where his style is a perfect fit for both the style and the substance of the book.