Monday, April 11, 2011

The Fall

The Fall by Guillermo del Toro & Chuck Hogan

 In this, the second book in The Strain Trilogy by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan, the authors have added some real substance to their story. For me, the first book fell short of the expectations I had for it. It started off well, but halfway through it, I started to get distracted from the story by the ridiculous actions of some of the characters. Regardless, I liked the book enough that I planned to read the subsequent books as they came out.

I'm glad I did. With The Fall, the authors take their story of a vampiric virus to a new level. None of the flaws that irritated me so much in the first book exist in this one. By the time the book begins, the strain, which first appeared in New York with the landing of a commercial  airplane which appeared to contain nothing but corpses, has become an epidemic, and possibly a pandemic. Eph Goodweather, head of the CDC, is leading his team in battle against the creatures that now run rampant during the night.

The book isn't just about humans versus vampires. It's also an account of the warring between the New- and Old-World vampire clans. The latter is trying to maintain the balance that has always existed between humans and the infected while the former has begun to disregard those restrictions in an attempt to take control of the earth.

Guillermo del Toro has probably one of the most creative imaginations in Hollywood. It was his name on the cover of The Strain that made me pick it up initially. I wanted to see if his creativity would translate as well in writing as it has visually in his movies. With The Fall I think it has. The feel and tone of the book are great. The story is unique even within the vampire genre and the creatures themselves are obviously dirivitives of the same mind that created Pan's Labyrinth.

★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

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