Title: The Strain
Author: Guillermo del Toro, Chuck Hogan
Genre: Suspense, science fiction, supernatural
Publisher: William Morrow
Publishing date: June 2nd 2009
Hello everyone! Halloween is around the corner, so I though it would be a good idea to review a book darker than the usual things I read, that’s why I chose The Strain, it has some elements of horror.
The strain starts telling us a particular story about Jusef Sardu, a Polish nobleman who
suffered from gigantism, and was brought to
Romania by his father on an expedition to hunt wolves. The entire hunting party
mysteriously died or disappeared, except for Sardu, who returned to his family
home in Poland but was rarely seen by the townspeople; and he eventually became
the village bogeyman. This little story is important to the whole plot, after
that the real story begins, now we are settled in New York several years later,
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. Ephraim "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. There is some kind of virus transforming people into “vampires”,
during his research he will team up with his colleague and former lover, Nora;
a former professor and survivor of the Holocaust named Abraham; and a plague
exterminator, Vasily Fet to save the city.
|Poster of the series.|
I must say that I loved how the book started; the story about Sardu had a magical and mysterious feeling, and got me hooked since the first page. When that story finishes the book loses this magical feeling, but now it’s mystery what wraps up the story. The Boeing 777 part is a tribute to Dracula by Bram Stoker; in that book it was a ship that was found in the same state.
|The Strain Vampires.|
I really liked how the authors explained vampirism, is a different approach of what I was used to, I’ve always seen it as something more paranormal and unexplained, sometimes related to the devil and demons. In this book vampirism is some kind of contagious virus with a somehow realistic scientific explanation.
The beginning of the book is kind of slow, but it’s always surrounded by mystery and suspense, the plot follows different points of view, not only the one of the protagonist, which makes the story more interesting, because there are a lot of things happening simultaneously in the city. Those points of view are not only of the main characters, there are some random people related to the virus whose story we get to know.
Despite the story being pretty interesting, the characters are not. I couldn’t develop any feelings towards them, I felt they were plain and had no personality at all, maybe the exterminator and Abraham are the ones I liked the most, but they didn’t convince me at all, if all they died I couldn’t care less… I hope there is character development in the second installment.
|Vampires in the series.|
I really liked this book’s vampires, they are not the typical elegant and beautiful creatures, they are really grotesque, and they are monsters, intelligent monsters.
The strain is a good introductory book, with a mysterious and full of suspense atmosphere, and with an interesting approach to vampirism, showing us a type of vampires with creepy and horrible looks. It’s a good book, interesting and easy to read.