Friday, October 4, 2013

The Twelve by Justin Cronin

They are the freest things on earth. Without remorse. Without pity. Without love. Nothing can touch them, hurt them.
Why I read this book?

This is the sequel for Cronin's The Passage. I read this one for last year's R.I.P challenge and so I waited for this year's R.I.P to read the sequel. Also it makes part of my Sequel Challenge. 

What's the book about?

If you remember from The Passage we learn a bit of how this epidemic came to be. Also one of the Twelve originals is gone. In The Twelve we have once again a bit of jumps from past and "present" seeing how the epidemic spread, how some of the families in Peter's colony came to be formed. We will see changes in several characters from the first book, both physical and psychological. 

What about the main character?

Is hard to pin point a single main character in this book but is not a bad thing. I really like the style Cronin uses; several characters telling the story while their paths cross, once, twice, several times. Of this book I was particularly hooked at Alicia's story. I loved her in the Passage, strong, confident, kick-ass. She is still all of that, but dealing with what she is now, as different as Amy but not the same type of different. On the other spectrum Guilder had a very interesting development as a character.

Final thoughts

Once again, Cronin blew me away. First, I like the premise of a bioengineered virus and I appreciate the fact that he doesn't necessarily build BS science. In several moments he says things like: something happened that gave this as a result, we don't know why, but it happened...which, BTW is something that happens a lot in science, I should know. I think if I would read the book just as a scientist I would have more points about the plausibility of the science in it, but I left my science goggles at the lab and hence this is a review not biased by my formation.

The time jumps are easy enough to follow and I like the mini cliff hangers at each characters story. You will plow through everyone's side of the story trying to know what happened to them, and then they will all merge swiftly. 

Was I expecting what comes up with Amy? Not necessarily, but I can hardly say it was a full surprise; it was however a nice twist and the reason why when I finished the book I rush to check when will the third book, The City of Mirrors, will come out. 

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