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The Passage by Justin Cronin - Book Review

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The Passage by Justin Cronin

The Passage by Justin Cronin

Random House

The Bottom Line

What is The Passage? It is a new standard for provocative and arresting apocalyptic literature, the first must-read of 2010.


  • 1st chapter is brilliant introduction of Amy, who moves readers to finish the book no matter what
  • The composition, characters and scope are worthy of the word epic
  • This is not just another post-apocalyptic vampire tale; 'The Passage' is a brave new world
  • The Passage is the pinnacle of a decade of books fascinated with bloodsuckers & the end of the world


  • 'The Passage' is quite the undertaking to read


  • 'The Passage' by Justin Cronin was published June 8, 2010.
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books
  • 784 pages

Guide Review - The Passage by Justin Cronin - Book Review

Are you willing to believe that what’s inside a little girl may be the only thing that can cure the world? This question is the first of many thoughtful ideas Justin Cronin poses to the reader in The Passage.

The time and place is our modern world dealing with evil unleashed in the shape of devouring blood suckers with one mind and no inhibitions. Every character involved in combating these warped, seemingly immortal beings – Amy, Wolgast, Lacey, Peter, Lish, the list goes on – Cronin makes you care about because he takes the time to completely flesh them out, making every possible threat all the more terrifying.

In light of Cronin taking on the incredible task of creating two worlds – the one before the outbreak of the "fangers" and the one after – The Passage is a long journey that is meant to be enjoyed over time. Don’t expect a big devouring rush of pages over 3 days or a fun entertaining beach read. This novel takes effort and reflection. It is rich and worth the energy to strive on in the journey and appreciate every detail.

Be warned. It is very hard to let go of some of the characters from the first third of the novel. The first 300 pages are gnarly and gripping and completely different from what comes after. But don’t worry. You will learn to love the last survivors in the Colony and the finale is as gripping as the beginning. When each character has to look into the eye of the other and trust there is a will to survive, there is a will to fight, Cronin asks the reader the same: Will you take on The Passage to see what might be on the other side?

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