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The Passage: The Passage Trilogy, Book 1 | [Justin Cronin]

The Passage: The Passage Trilogy, Book 1

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.
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Publisher's Summary

“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.

©2010 Justin Cronin (P)2010 Random House

What the Critics Say

“Read this book and the ordinary world disappears.” (Stephen King)

“Magnificently unnerving . . . The Stand meets The Road.” (Entertainment Weekly)

“Justin Cronin has written a wild, headlong, sweeping extravaganza of a novel. The Passage is the literary equivalent of a unicorn: a bona fide thriller that is sharply written, deeply humane, ablaze with big ideas, and absolutely impossible to put down.” (Jennifer Egan, author of A Visit from the Goon Squad)

What Members Say

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  •  
    Allison Jacksonville, FL, United States 06-11-10
    Allison Jacksonville, FL, United States 06-11-10

    If I follow you, it's because I've glanced through your reviews and more than likely found books I've agreed with you on and also found at least one book that the majority loved, and you and I were less than thrilled with. I know I should follow you then for that next read that I will enjoy.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Worth the Credit!!"

    It is a good listen. I usually don't care for Scott Brick a whole lot because sometimes I just can't get into the characters he reads, I think he does a good job at narrating, but that wasn't a problem for me in this book. I think he did excellent. Also, as others have said, it's more end of the world as we know it, contagion more than vampires. Vampires are definitely not glamorized. To me, also, this book could have been four or five books because you go through hours and hours of a story, then it changes, hours and hours of another well-developed plot/story, then it changes onto another long phase. All tied back in at the end, but they could kind of have stood alone. To me I like some Stephen King books, but not all, I definitely feel like it was a good use of a credit, I've listened to all 36 hours in a matter of five days, it kept me entertained and interested. I don't have to "believe" in everything like a friend of mine does in movies she sees or books that she reads. If she can't believe it, she doesn't enjoy it. I just want to be entertained with a good story and a good narrator and this fit the bill for me.

    19 of 23 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Derek B. A strange midwestern city, United States 06-30-10
    Derek B. A strange midwestern city, United States 06-30-10 Member Since 2015

    It's simple really, I am just a guy looking to enjoy the writing and reading talents of others while raising my family the best I can, just Like most everyone else!!!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    647
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    38
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    "I hate to complain about any book, but!"

    This book had me telling people about this wonderful book with interesting people in it that were caught up in some engrossing stories. But then it happend! The book shot ahead 100 years and a new book started! No kidding, it seemed to me it was written by a different author as well. It went from great to something that did little to interest me. It went from interesting to drawn out. It pains me to say anything bad about a book because just because I don't like something doesn't mean you wont unless we have the same taste but I feel the need to point out what I see as a problem in this book!

    52 of 67 people found this review helpful
  •  
    kelly Oklahaoma City, OK, United States 07-25-10
    kelly Oklahaoma City, OK, United States 07-25-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    23
    5
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    2
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    Overall
    "good and bad?"

    This story started out interesting and then got really boring in parts. I had a hard time finishing it because I just got so bored with some of the parts of the story. I would not recommend this book. I think the author needs some fine tuning.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alicia Rossville, GA, USA 06-18-10
    Alicia Rossville, GA, USA 06-18-10 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    11
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    "I knew it wouldn't - IT COULDN'T stay at 1 credit!"

    This is the first time that I've written a review after being with audible since 2004 or so, but I had to because this book is simply breathtaking. 3 reasons come to mind:
    1. It is epic in scope, spanning over a century in its development,
    2. The characterization combined with the apocalyptic setting put you there asking not only, "what would I do" but also, "What am I capable of enduring".
    3. 30+ hours of phenomenal literature for 1 measly credit! Like I said in the title, I knew the 1 credit charge wouldn't - COULDN'T last!

    This one is absolutely worth it, even for 2 credits!

    11 of 14 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Joyce E McBride 06-15-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    76
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    13
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    Overall
    "Not quite finished yet"

    I read the 9 reviews to see what others had to say and thought there was something missing...This is a good book if you enjoy end of times genre...it is similar to Stephen King's The Stand, Niven's Lucifer's Hammer and Forstchen's One Second After...there is an event that causes the world as we currently know it to be dramatically altered. The 'event' is a bit ambigious...Cronin seems to be tying up loose ends...I am 1/2 way through part 4...so I still have hope it will all make sense...in my mind it can best be described as an "artsy" version of The Stand...but I dont seem to be as involved or intrigued by the characters...it also seems less believable...as silly as that sounds if you have read/listened to the titles I listed in comparison...I would buy this book again knowing what I do now...and I will listen to it again...it wont be in my top 5...but I have no reservations recommending it to someone who likes the genre

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Pembroke Pines, FL, United States 06-14-10
    Richard Pembroke Pines, FL, United States 06-14-10 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not average vampires"

    First, I hate vampire books, second I don't like the emotive Scott Brick. But third this book is not all that bad. It sure held my attention, and I really liked the first half of the book, before Dark Night. Before Dark Night the book was a bit disjointed bringing several stories together to meet and make sense. I could not stop listening to that part of the book and liked several of the characters. The book picks up about 93 years after Dark Night with new characters and a new story. This one I did not like as much but is still a good story. These sticks, viruses, dracs are sometimes called vampires but are just people that have gotten sick and been changed. Virals is the best name for them, and folks cluster together to avoid being killed by them. All in all it is a fantasy and if you can get into it I think you will enjoy it. At almost 37 hours I admit I was a bit tired of it all at the end but still rate it four stars, and think you should get this before it goes to two credits, as it surely will.

    8 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    tim booth 07-07-10
    tim booth 07-07-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    5
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    "Thespian"

    This book is soo frustrating. I can tell its exciting and well written, but as it goes on, I can't get past the awful narration. The reader has a tick- on every line, EVERY line, he drops the pitch of the last word. His voice carries an actorly dread throughout, which is wearisome and undermines the sections where that emotion is really needed. I end up approaching the book with dread and I'm not even past the first section. I doubt whether i will be able to finish it.

    25 of 33 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Reno, NV, United States 05-11-12
    Mark Reno, NV, United States 05-11-12 Member Since 2012
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    Performance
    Story
    "After 25 hours, nothing had happened so I gave up"
    Any additional comments?

    The book has been compared to The Stand. It's not in the same league. It is about a viral apocalypse that kills most people and leaves a few survivors holding out against rabid vampires. This scenario is set up plausibly but it is shockingly boring boring boring.

    The first part is slightly compelling as the background is set up, although the author is too long-winded with descriptions and inner monologues that never pay off. He's simply not good at creating differentiated characters.

    Then there's the second big setting where a large community hides in a fortress against "the virals." It's hour after hour of nothing but not very intriguing descriptions of political alliances and love triangles among the residents.

    There are a few skirmishes with the virals but they're not tension-filled. And the computer hacking 90 years after the end of civilization is preposterous.

    The last thing I would say is that I might've given the book two stars because I could see how maybe fantasy fans might like some of it, but the book costs two credits! There are longer (and better!) books available for a single credit, such as The Pillars of the Earth. I can't imagine anyone finding this book worth two credits, all of the positive reviews notwithstanding...

    P.S. The narrator is fine, perhaps a bit slow or maybe that was my desire for action to happen.

    16 of 21 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Clyde Dale 07-15-10
    Clyde Dale 07-15-10

    Clydesdale

    HELPFUL VOTES
    57
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    "Could not put it down."

    Enthralling from beginning to end. Although I confess I'm a few hours away from the end right now. One of the most captivating books I've read in quite a while.

    10 of 13 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jennie Titusville, FL, United States 10-29-10
    Jennie Titusville, FL, United States 10-29-10 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
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    0
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    "Long and Awful"

    The author must have been paid by the word - there's no need to use 50 words to describe something that would ordinarily take 5. And the narrator - he's whiny voice made it hard to listen to more than 1 hour at a time. I wasted my credits.

    7 of 9 people found this review helpful
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