A Novel (Book Two of The Passage Trilogy)
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Look for a special preview of Justin Cronin’s The City of Mirrors in the back of the book.
The end of the world was only the beginning.
In his internationally bestselling and critically acclaimed novel The Passage, Justin Cronin constructed an unforgettable world transformed by a government experiment gone horribly wrong. Now the scope widens and the intensity deepens as the epic story surges forward with . . .
In the present day, as the man-made apocalypse unfolds, three strangers navigate the chaos. Lila, a doctor and an expectant mother, is so shattered by the spread of violence and infection that she continues to plan for her child’s arrival even as society dissolves around her. Kittridge, known to the world as “Last Stand in Denver,” has been forced to flee his stronghold and is now on the road, dodging the infected, armed but alone and well aware that a tank of gas will get him only so far. April is a teenager fighting to guide her little brother safely through a landscape of death and ruin. These three will learn that they have not been fully abandoned—and that in connection lies hope, even on the darkest of nights.
One hundred years in the future, Amy and the others fight on for humankind’s salvation . . . unaware that the rules have changed. The enemy has evolved, and a dark new order has arisen with a vision of the future infinitely more horrifying than man’s extinction. If the Twelve are to fall, one of those united to vanquish them will have to pay the ultimate price.
A heart-stopping thriller rendered with masterful literary skill, The Twelve is a grand and gripping tale of sacrifice and survival.
Praise for The Twelve
“[A] literary superthriller.”—The New York Times Book Review
“An undeniable and compelling epic . . . a complex narrative of flight and forgiveness, of great suffering and staggering loss, of terrible betrayals and incredible hope.”—Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
“The Twelve is even better than The Passage.”—The Plain Dealer
“A compulsive read.”—San Francisco Chronicle
“Gripping . . . Cronin [introduces] eerie new elements to his masterful mythology. . . . Enthralling, emotional and entertaining.”—The San Diego Union-Tribune
“Fine storytelling.”—Associated Press
“Cronin is one of those rare authors who works on two different levels, blending elegantly crafted literary fiction with cliff-hanging thrills.”—Fort Worth Star-Telegram
From the Trade Paperback edition.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Justin Cronin continues to flesh out the postapocalyptic, vampiric fever dream of The Passage. The Twelve builds on the nightmarish vision of marauding “virals”—superhumans who thirst for blood—by following the early aftermath of the twisted government scheme that led to the scourge. Cronin then pushes things forward a century, raising the stakes for the survivors. We were mesmerized by the book’s sympathetic characters, particularly steely, stoic Alicia and seemingly immortal Amy. Cronin is great at the kind of blockbuster-style action sequences and looming suspense that keep us glued to a book.
Bestseller Cronin s bloated apocalyptic thriller, like many a trilogy s middle book, falls short of the high standard set by its predecessor, 2010 s The Passage. The struggle for survival between humanity s last hope, personified by Amy Harper Bellafonte, and vampire-like virals comes across as watered-down Stephen King, short on three-dimensional characters as well as genuine scares. The action shifts from the present five years after the First Colony, a refuge, has fallen to the virals to Year Zero, when the virus that caused the catastrophe was unleashed, but the value added by the flashbacks isn t obvious. A prologue surveys the events of The Passage in biblical prose ( And a decree shall go forth from the highest offices that twelve criminals shall be chosen to share of the Zero s blood, becoming demons also ), but fails to bring readers adequately up to speed. A dramatis personae at the back listing more than 80 names is scarcely more helpful. 15- to 20-city author tour.
I found this book to be thoroughly enjoyable and a fitting sequel to the first book. Yes, there is some time spent reviewing the first book but I didn't think it was too much.
I actually enjoyed this book more then the first because I felt Cronin did a better job moving the story along. That was really my only complaint with the first book so I was happy to see it resolved.
I think that Cronin did a great job answering questions left from the first book but also laying out a new plot to give this book it's own identity and to help set up for the final installment of this trilogy.
As usual, I was sucked into the story and after finishing reading found myself lulling myself to sleep with thoughts of how I would act and want choices I would make if I were in the middle of the apocalypse. To me, this is a sign of a great book.
One of the best!
This series is one one of the best vampire/end of the world books I have read in a long time! I read the twelve in 2 days! I could not put it down! Does anyone know when the last book of the trilogy comes out?! Hope it's soon!
Too much of this book is a review of the first book as if the writer did not believe anyone read the first one. One whole chapter is copied directly from the first book. I purposely re-read The Passage before The Twelve came out so I would remember it. I really wish the author would have written a totally new book, a real second book, not a review of the first.