(aka My Favorite Book This Summer)
When I read The Passage in 2012, I had no clue what I was getting myself into. A nearly 1,000 page novel following the lives of several people in a post-apocalyptic U.S. laid to ruins by a government (vampire) experiment gone wrong? This really didn’t sound like my cup of tea.
But then I read it. And I couldn’t believe how beautifully it had been done, how emotionally invested I became in the story.
It wasn’t until I finished that I learned that it was part of a trilogy and that the second novel, The Twelve, was due out soon. When it was finally published, I waited to read it. I’m glad I waited until now, when I could really just lose myself in the story and marvel at its complexity and intelligence. Author Justin Cronin elaborates on the experiences of the characters in The Passage and introduces us to new ones. He fleshes out a world and a history that comes together so seamlessly, my jaw couldn’t help but drop.
Cronin has a Stephen King-esque imagination, but the depth and skill of a literary novelist like Cormac McCarthy. Reading his works really blew my mind. I’m not going to say it’s for everyone because I realize it isn’t. It’s heavy — both in physical and metaphysical weight — but it is exceptional. And if you stay with it, you won’t be disappointed.
The third and final book of the trilogy will be published in 2014. I haven’t been this excited for a sequel since Harry Potter.