The Passage by Justin Cronin
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Finally finished The Passage, by Justin Cronin. I normally don't like to buy books based on their hype because hype usually just means the author is well connected and not necessarily skilled of the writing. Yes, Dan Brown, I'm looking at you.
I do, however, read books on friend recommendation so I started out with this book on Amazon, reading the first few chapters online, which were compelling enough to get me to buy the book.
Not entirely disappointed, but I'm not going to perpetuate the hype. Still, this is part one of a planned trilogy and I am not opposed to reading further to have some questions answered. My disappointmentishness comes from the fact that many of those questions really should have been answered in the first book. In fact, the final chapters of the book have me needing to reread them to figure out what I missed in order to explain how we get from various point As to point Bs. Discussion with my friend confirms, however, that there was no explanation. Just more of a 'git'er'done/oh here we are' writing to get the story where it needed to go in a hurry. After 700 pages, why the sudden need to rush? Have you been talking to JK Rowlings?
There are several characters that can be considered mains. I suppose they are handled well enough to be somewhat compelling, but main characters usually aren't the ones you really care about. The supporting characters are all quite unique and interesting, but more often than not, they end up disappeared for various reasons (some times unexplained reasons) such that you are stuck with the mains who are rather undefined and unfocused. Well, there is just one main character, but it takes a bit of time for him to settle into focus.
Exactly what is the Passage? Not sure. I think the book tried to define it in the end, but by that time, it was jumping around so much to try to tie up loose ends without actually doing so that I am left with the dense feeling that the passage is actually just a hallway in a now exploded building.
Ridley Scott has already bought the film rights for $1.75 million. I imagine there will need to be quite a bit of editing. I hope Russell Crowe isn't going to star in it. Also, avoid Will Smith since the book's vampire + cure cancer concept is rather been there done that.
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