- Audible Audio Edition
- Listening Length: 36 hours and 52 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Orion Publishing Group Limited
- Audible.com.au Release Date: 24 June 2010
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00NX57ANY
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,228 in (See Top 100 in )
The Passage Audible Audio Edition – Unabridged
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Top Customer Reviews
The Passage has been likened to Stephen King's The Stand and indeed a less than charitable analysis might suggest that it is a straight rip-off. In fact, there is much more here that will be familiar to a well read King fan and there are also strong resemblances to Firestarter as well as Salem's Lot, Cell and so-on. However, this is ground that has been well trodden by many a story teller and there's a goodly helping of Resident Evil, ...Read more ›
I've been reading a lot recently, mostly works from some of the big names in speculative fiction. So it surprised me when I saw The Passage by Justin Cronin on my Goodreads list. I don't recall where the recommendation came from, and the synopsis read as a post-apocalyptic novel with vampires. That did not instill confidence in the book: two of the most overdone sub-genres. Combining them seemed like a recipe for disaster. Throw in its almost 800 page girth and I was worried. But for some reason I gave it a go. And it was worth it.
The Passage is the first in a trilogy, and begins in modern times. It's a fairly standard plot, with the military trying to create super soldiers and I doubt I'm spoiling much when I say it goes awry. The story then jumps forward a hundred years and we see how the world has devolved with a small cluster of survivors eking out an existence amongst the hordes of roaming vampires. So far, nothing inspiring. However, what sets this story apart is the characters. From the very first chapter, I was invested. Each character is so well developed and rounded that you can help but become attached. You know their desires and their weaknesses. They become real. This is the mark of a masterful writer and was exceptionally surprising to find in this genre.
As you would expect, life in a post-apocalyptic world ravaged by vampires isn't particularly pretty. The world is well developed, and everything feels like it belongs. Given that it's set only one hundred years after the event, there are no crazy technology leaps to worry about, it's an easily accessible world. It's gritty without being overbearingly dark. It's violent without being gory.Read more ›
At its heart this is a blockbuster novel, in the style of Stephen King, and in much the same way as King it mixes elements of the horror genre with elements from literary fiction in a very readable way. Of course, in doing so it has the potential to upset some fans of genres, but such is the cost of the crossover novel. You can't please everyone.
I think that what makes this a blockbuster novel, as opposed to a literary one, is the melodramatic nature of its themes. As some have said here, it's sometimes like a soap opera. But a very good soap opera. Cronin tugs at our heart strings and he tugs at them hard. He's also a fan of the cliff-hanger moment, which he uses to great effect, if perhaps a few many times. In the end the reader always knows what's coming: the character will survive; we just have to wait a while.
What prevents the Passage from being pastiche is the quality of Cronin's writing. As a trying writer (in both senses of the word) I envy Cronin his skill. His character building is excellent, as is his dialogue. There are also many seperate individuals, the best sign of a wonderful storyteller.
For me, this is a five-star book. I can live with the way in which it misses the pursuits of some genres, to help further the pursuits of others, because what it does well, it does very well indeed. My heart strings really were tugged. I really cared, from the start to the end. And I was often on the edge of my seat.
I'm definitely one of Amy's.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I've read and loved many books that flit between times and characters but I didn't love this one.
The characters never connected -I never laughed with them or cried for them... Read more
While the second act drags a little, and the narrative style is a little disconnected, this is a great read and highly recommended. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Jon
Why did I pick this up now? Well, vampires! Plus, I got caught in the hype machine marketing the latest novel and figured I had to start at the beginning. Read morePublished 6 months ago by dntfeedthemnkys
Great read, couldn't put it down. Just wanted to know what happened in the end- would it be a happy ending? Would everyone survive. The ending was bittersweet. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Mshell
This is a book of over 700 pages and there are 2 more books to read. I have read every word in this book not skipped a moment which I do if books are becoming a little boring. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Amazon Customer
A great read ... Reminds me a lot of the stand but it was very good and everything works well. Gonna have to get into book 2 asap as this opened a ton of doorsPublished 7 months ago by Jabs
A bona fide page turner. A number of different plot threads that coalesce very nicely. I am just about to order 'the Twelve'.Published 8 months ago
Ok so it is about the end of the world and vampires but really it is a story about a group of people surviving in a post apocalyptic world. Personally I loved it!Published 8 months ago by Alison de Lisle
Compelling. Couldn't put it down. Just read it a second time (getting reacquainted now the third book is out) and just as good as the first time. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Rohan Johnson