Sunday, November 4, 2012

Review: The Twelve by Justin Cronin

by:  Justin Cronin
published by:  Ballantine Books
publish date:  October 16, 2012

At the end of The Passage, the great viral plague had left a small group of survivors clinging to life amidst a world transformed into a nightmare. In the second volume of this epic trilogy, this same group of survivors, led by the mysterious, charismatic Amy, go on the attack, leading an insurrection against the virals: the first offensives of the Second Viral War.

To do this, they must infiltrate a dozen hives, each presided over by one of the original Twelve. Their secret weapon: Alicia, transformed at the end of book one into a half human, half viral—but whose side, in the end, is she really on?

The Twelve was easily my most anticipated book this year.  I could not wait to get my hands on this book.   Honestly, I got a little teary eyed when the ARC came in the mail.  No lie.

I got a few chapters into it and realized I was going to need the audiobook.  There are just certain kinds of books that do better in audiobook form for me personally.  Since I originally started The Passage in audiobook, I kept hearing The Twelve in Scott Brick's voice in my head and that was just messing up my reading.  So I went down to the library and put my name on the waiting list.  Fortunately I didn't have to wait long.

I had a little bit of trouble keeping the time line straight in this book.  There are some jumps back and forth in time.  Generally, they were pretty straightforward and easy to follow along with.  There's a specific incident that happens in a cornfield in Texas.  Everything associated with this incident is what would throw me off.  I had trouble keeping track of who everyone was in relation to the original colony and the Texas settlements. 

Looking past all that, perhaps if I paid better attention and kept up a little better, I liked this continuation of the story.  It carried over some of the characters from the first book and introduced some new ones.  I really liked where the story line of Lawrence Gray,  one the guys in charge of monitoring the test subjects in The Passage carries on in this book.  His story introduces the diabolical Horace Guilder and crazy Lila (Brad Wolgast's ex-wife).

I found this book to be a strong second book in a trilogy.  Often times, second books aren't worth much, but this had a lot to offer.  There was a lot of world building and introduction of new characters.  There were a lot of questions at the end of this book.  I don't want to post them because I don't want to be spoilerish, but if anyone wants to chat about it, I'm definitely down for that!

And if anyone is curious about Book 3, it's called The City of Mirrors and it's due out 2014!

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