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.
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 California 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 into 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. The Passage.
©2010 Justin Cronin (P)2010 Orion Publishing group
I love a great long book but this one was not for me. Loved how it started but then it lost me over and over again. Each to their own, you may love it as I know others have.
My main reason for choosing this was for the reading by Scott Brick – I love his style.
The rave reviews surprise me.
The start is very good even if a little predictable but I was hopeful for a great 36 hours.
Maybe I'm just not into post apocalyptic novels. I have a greater faith in humankind to make more of things and to be more sensible.
Warning semi-spoiler coming.
The set up for the future colony was stupid and hence the whole of the last 2/3rds of the story became irritating. The quasi religious stuff was interesting and showed great promise, but was never fully developed. As ever I always hang in to the end hoping there will be relevance to the boring bits in the middle. But no. I think the author realised that eventually he wasn't actually going anywhere with the story so just called it a day, much the frustration of many, but for me a relief.
Overall avoid this one if you like your stories to have a semblance of rationality about them.
Justin Cronin is a master at weaving a story around human emotions and reactions. But if you're looking for something warm and fuzzy choose another because this is in NO WAY A ROMANTIC TALE where everyone lives happily ever after. Cronin seems to have an amazing gift for getting in to the reader's mind - or in this case, the listener's mind. A very descriptive style that allows you to sink so deeply in to what the characters are feeling that it often becomes quite heavy going. Its altogether possible that you might need to take a break every now and then because its a bit overwhelming. You name the emotion and its in this book: fear, despair, love, grief, joy, desperation, hope, jealousy, faith, evil. But don't be fooled in to thinking its all just a yarn about touchy/feely stuff, because there is great depth and variety in the story line - how the characters feel is wholly (and believably) related to the action and story line. I nearly ignored this book based on the cover art. At first glance I was tempted to think it was simply a book about an abandoned little girl. But the addition of 'Something is Coming' enticed me to read the full description. Its always nice when you find a book that provides such bang for your buck (in terms of both quality and listening time). This is a long book but I never lost interest or wondered where the hell the story was headed. About to start on the next in the series - you really cant go wrong with Scott Brick. This book was primarily read by Scott with short journal extracts performed by Adenrele and Abby. If you're looking for a great read that's based around tough choices in extreme circumstances you're likely to enjoy...
Ok, so it was the length of the story that first grabbed my attention; I do so love a long book....but only if it's good! Had I seen any of the marketing that refers to it as a vampire book, I probably wouldn't have even looked twice, as they're not usually my thing. I do like a good post-apocolyptic story though, and that's the other thing that drew me in.
All that aside, I was expecting something just OK. What I found instead is a very cleverly written, well paced and mostly believable story. More importantly, the characters are real and not too larger than life, although some aspects of the environment are. The scientific elements, although unsual, make sense. And for me, that's important. I have no problem in suspending my disbelief as long as the concept is plausible, which this one is.
All in all, it just works. It's not perfect, but nor can I find anything that rubs the wrong way, annoys or detracts. It's totally engaging and I find myself looking forward listening to it, yet at the same time, I don't want it to end. Imagine my delight when I learned that it was the first in a Trilogy? I am almost at the end of this epic adventure and have already purchased the second one, so it looks like it doesn't have to end after all.
All of it!! Mainly though the believability of all the characters and the story that follows each of them. You really feel invested in each of them.
Probably "The Stand" but only because thats another end of the world epic.
Its Scott Brick. Nothing more to say!
The first chapter really got to me. I won't spoil it but as a grown man it was the closet I've come to crying at the first part of any book.
Hands down one of the best books I have ever read.
I would recommend the book to a friend, but not this audio book.
I am going to go out and buy the book because I really want to read it. I couldn't finish this audio version because of the narrators droning voice! If this was a short story or normal length novel it might have been alright but considering the length of this epic story having a narrator who cannot emote even a little was simple bad casting.
I couldn't even finish the first installment. The story is amazing but his voice just makes me want to scream.
For a book to get five stars from me, it'd have to be good. So far in my audiobook journey, 'The Passage' and it's sequel, 'Twelve' come the closest. Not a vampire story as such (thank goodness), but the fresh and innovative take on the vampire myth is compelling. While the character development is a bit hollow and predictive I really enjoyed this action packed adventure. Don't however, read The Passage unless you also plan to read the sequel Twelve. The Passage does not conclude at all, but leaves off in the middle of the story. Twelve is just as good as The Passage and brings the story to a satisfying conclusion but with hints as to how the story will continue in the third book 'The City of Mirrors' - can't wait!
Although one has to give Justin Cronin credit for incredible imaginative and descriptive powers, I cannot recommend this book as I found it really disturbing and violent. Obviously it would appeal to some people, but not to me. Extremely well developed characters and detail. The narrators performance was a little over the top, particularly when he tried to imitate accents, which was irritating.
"Brilliant book, had no idea it was unfinished"
Ok, i loved this book but unlike everyone else i did not hear all the hype about it. So i had no idea that this is part of a proposed trilogy, if i had known that I would not have bothered.- especially as the next part is not due til 2012. I wondered why the ending was so abrupt and lame but I will not spoil it for you.
I loved all of the characters and the plot was great, so what if it was another vampire book, its so diffrent from any other. A couple of boring bits i had to double speed through i.e. the 'who am i?' bit and the listing of names (in answering the aforementionned question) that went on and on. Other than that this book kept me on my toes and i was very sad it ended. Maybe they wll make it into a film.
So bottom line, buy this book it is a good investment but beware it is unfinished
When I brought this book I wasn't sure that I would enjoyed it. It took me a long time to get round to listening. I listened to the 1st 5 hours and then came back to it whilst on sick leave, could not put it down. I even feel asleep listening. I cant wait to for the next installment ( I trully hope that there is). Althought a little disappointed at the end. The narrator is excellent and very descriptive. Recommended*****
"This book fills a much-needed gap"
Despite the supposed pre-release hype overload, which passed me by completely, I found 'The Passage' on Audible linked from Stephen King's tremendous 'Under The Dome'. His even better 'The Stand' contributed to choosing this, but while it bears comparison in its post-apocalyptic theme it certainly does not in its readability, its pacing, its characters, its plot, or in its entertainment.
Cronin seems to confuse the epic with the merely long: I can't remember the last 850-page book I read in which so little actually /happened/. It opens well enough, though, the enjoyable first part setting the satisfying if fairly hackneyed near-future scene, the threads of the cast's stories drawing them towards a shadowy military installation and its doomed experiments.
There is then not so much an evolution of the plot but a saltation - a completely new story, but it's not a very good one. The characters stop being interesting, few develop in any satisfying way, and while there's lots of travelling around for the next sixty chapters they don't seem to go anywhere. I finished it two hours ago, and beyond a couple of set pieces I can hardly remember what happened. My plot precis could fit in about twenty words.
Overall it feels like a literary novelist - and the man can certainly write a sentence - choosing to demonstrate his genre flexibility with a move into highbrow sci-horror, but it simply pales as entertainment next to a King, Straub or Koontz who could have made so much more of this. Too long by far, too light on plot, too heavy on backstory for characters with such a short lifetime; and as the first in a trilogy (I'm told) demonstrates a kind of 'Lost'-esque hubris about the stamina and dedication of his audience.
Thirty six hours of investment, yet I have no interest in the next two parts. The abridged version of this might make for a tighter narrative. If you try it at all, save yourself twenty hours of padding and try that.
"This is not buffy"
I really enjoyed listening to The Passage, and yes you should believe the hype. I'm not the biggest fan of this kind of literature, I think the vampire theme in a lot of novels is wearing a little thin, however what saves this book is the awesome writing. Although this is Justin Cronin's first bestseller, from what I have read he has been a writer for some time and this really shows in this novel. The character's are really interesting and his descriptions of their surroundings are well carved out which really does make it a page turner. His writing actually reminds me a lot of Stephen King. In all my reviews I feel it important to mention the narrator as I think this can make or break an audiobook- the narrators in The Passage are excellent, it is a long book and the main narrator doesn't lose pace once, he also has a really great tone to his voice, hard to describe but perfect for this kind of novel.
Certainly worth a listen if you appreciate good writing, good narration and a good old fashioned zombie theme!
Having read the review I was vey disappointed with the book in fact it's the first book that I have chosen not to finish. The book commenced very well but as it progressed to me it simply became very boring and simply did not retain my attention and interest. As I say I was disappinted and perhaps it is me but I simply could not continue to listen to the book's conclusion.
At over 36 hours long you would expect this book to be a triumph of characterisation with a sweeping epic narrative. Unfortunately it is neither.
It is incredibly overwritten and, for it's apocalyptic subject matter, surprisingly dull. The characters are all rather interchangable, dull and incredibly humourless.
Some of the fault must lie with Scott Bricks terrible narration, as on the few occasions that the narrator changes to Ms Ojo or Ms Craven you actually start to be interested and care about the characters.
If you must download this I would perhaps suggest the abridged version as I suspect a really good edit would have improved things no end.
"Fabulous style of writing."
This is one of the few books that I've listened to more than once, in fact three times in all. I absolutely love Justin Cronin's capacity to draw you into the story, to keep you guessing and wanting more...in fact I've been known to stay awake just so I can hear what happens next on far too many occasions.
The narrators are all amazing and bring their own uniqueness to each part of the total, but I have to say Scott Brick is exceptional and I've bought more books narrated by him just because I missed hearing his voice.
I'm off to listen to the second book The Twelve again, and await the last part of the trilogy, The City of Mirrors, coming out in June this year with almost fevered anticipation!
Don't hesitate to listen to these, you'll really be missing a gem if you do!
Comparable in scale and narrative to Stephen King's The Stand - a book I never thought would be rivalled. Make sure you read this. The narrator is fantastic too.
"very long for a prequel"
I struggled as the readers voice sent me. to sleep. needs more gusto
"A really great storyline exceptionally well read"
Scot Brick at his very best. I wasn't sure if I would like this story or not at first. A bit of a "walking dead" storyline. To be honest I only choose it because of the narration. I am an avid fan of Scott, and feel that anything he chose to read must be worth listening to. Oh how I was right to believe. An exceptional storyline from start to finish. Danger, exciting, a little romance thrown in and lots and lost of "killing vamps". The storyline did follow a bit of the usual line of virus wipes out most of mankind, but a few brave heroes go out to save humanity. I won't tell you how it ends, but a really good audiobook, and really worth the listen. Happy Audiobooking........
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