As previously reported, I’m back to reading books purely for the enjoyment of reading. After my hiatus, I read A Once Crowded Sky which didn’t help me much. In fact, I kind of stagnated with that book.
But when I heard that Justin Cronin was releasing his second book in his Passage Trilogy I got all fired up again. Justifiably so.
The Twelve begins by revisiting the apocalypse that began in The Passage. The military was experimenting with a virus that turned twelve test subjects into vampires, who, of course, escaped and ravaged humanity. The second in Cronin’s trilogy was everything I had been waiting for.
It had the suspense and action that I loved about the first book, while maintaining Cronin’s skills as a genre-bender. This book is a little sci-fi, a little horror (without relying on vampire clichés), a lot apocalyptic & post-apocalyptic, but it is wholly character driven. There are chapters that will bring you to the verge of tears.
The Twelve goes back and fills in a little of the history of the United States after the virus outbreak. The first half of the book follows a few survivors struggling to find safety as they cross through empty cities that once were major metropolises. Though, it feels just a tad disjointed (i.e. are we going to get back to the heroes we loved in The Passage?) Cronin pulls his story lines together flawlessly. (And we do get back to the heroes we loved in The Passage!)
This books was the complete reading experience, and I look forward to getting at the third installment as soon as it is released.