“Part The Andromeda Strain, part Night of the Living Dead.” —Salon.com
The visionary creator of the Academy Award-winning Pan's Labyrinth and a Hammett Award-winning author bring their imaginations to this bold, epic novel about a horrifying battle between man and vampire that threatens all humanity. The first installment in a thrilling trilogy.
A Boeing 777 arrives at JFK and is on its way across the tarmac, when it suddenly stops dead. All window shades are pulled down. All lights are out. All communication channels have gone quiet. Crews on the ground are lost for answers, but an alert goes out to the CDC. Dr. Eph Goodweather, head of their Canary project, a rapid-response team that investigates biological threats, gets the call and boards the plane. What he finds makes his blood run cold.
In a pawnshop in Spanish Harlem, a former professor and survivor of the Holocaust named Abraham Setrakian knows something is happening. And he knows the time has come, that a war is brewing . . .
So begins a battle of mammoth proportions as the vampiric virus that has infected New York begins to spill out into the streets. Eph, who is joined by Setrakian and a motley crew of fighters, must now find a way to stop the contagion and save his city—a city that includes his wife and son—before it is too late.
An epic battle for survival begins between man and vampire in The Strain—the first book in a heart-stopping trilogy from one of Hollywood’s most inventive storytellers and a critically acclaimed thriller writer. Guillermo del Toro, the genius director of the Academy Award-winning Pan’s Labyrinth and Hellboy, and Hammett Award-winning author Chuck Hogan have joined forces to boldly reinvent the vampire novel. Brilliant, blood-chilling, and unputdownable, The Strain is a nightmare of the first order.
Director Del Toro (who won an Oscar for Pan's Labyrinth) makes a dramatic splash in his fiction debut, the first volume in a vampires vs. humanity trilogy, coauthored with Hogan (Prince of Thieves). Just as a jumbo jet on a flight from Germany to New York is touching down at JFK, something goes terribly wrong. When Ephraim Goodweather, of the Centers for Disease Control, investigates the darkened plane, he finds all but four passengers and crew dead, drained of blood. Despite Goodweather's efforts to keep the survivors segregated, they get discharged into the general population. Soon after, the corpses of the tragedy's victims disappear. The epidemiologist begins to credit the wild stories of Abraham Setrakian, an elderly pawnbroker who's the book's Van Helsing figure, and concludes that a master vampire has arrived in the U.S. The authors maintain the suspense and tension throughout in a tour de force reminiscent of Whitley Strieber's early work.
Review: The Strain
A literary masterpiece? No. But, fun to read? Oh, yes.
Kept me entertained through hours of business travel and left me wishing that I didn't have to power down my iPad during takeoff and landing.
Also, a great way to set the mood for the Halloween season!
Gotta be kidding
A great read? Definitely not. A great concept on updating the vampire (thanks to G del Toro). A terrible and trite story told in a sophomoric and soporific style. The big show down at the end reads like blocking for stuntmen in a movie and as for characters, well we get nothing. Just people who do things. Prose is awful. Sure did learn a thing or three about rats but then one the acknowledgements we learn that was all copped from a single source. Spare me the sequel. I could care less about what happens next. This is Twilight on testosterone. Nada más.
Riveting, but not Rocket Science.
This was an engaging summer read. I have long been a fan of Guillermo del Toro’s monsters and his fingerprints were all over this story line, which was co-written by Chuck Hogan. I could almost picture the creatures in the story but I’m sure Guillermo would have crafted them further into things of hideousness in film. While this wasn’t rocket science, it was nonetheless enjoyable and thrilling reading. I’m eager to read the subsequent books of the trilogy.