The Strain Review
The Strain is the first novel in a vampire-inspired trilogy co-authored by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan. I found the book to be very well written. The Strain probably won’t achieve vampire greatness like Richard Matheson’s I Am Legend or Anne Rice’s Interview With A Vampire, but it’s an enjoyable ride through and through.
First off, before getting to the plot, I love that The Strain takes place in New York - much of the action unfolds throughout Queens and Manhattan. I can instantly visualize key moments, having lived in Woodside for several years as a child. There’s a familiarity to the locations, and that went a long way in immersing me in the story.
The Strain begins with a seemingly ordinary flight landing at JFK. Air traffic controllers notice that all the lights are off, and all the shades have been pulled down. When the CDC is called to investigate, everyone on board is found dead. I won’t go too much further into the plot, at the risk of spoiling anything, but The Strain is a tense journey that grows more and more dire with every page.
Since The Strain is part of a trilogy, don’t be surprised to be left with a cliffhanger. That’s to say, everything is not tied up neatly, and the ending will leave you wanting more. I am a huge fan of cliffhangers and prefer them to a happy (or tragic) resolution. There’s something immensely satisfying about knowing there’s more to come, and judging by the advance reviews, book two in the trilogy is going to deliver.
The Strain is gripping. The book is dark, scary, and it’s generally hard to put down. I highly recommend you give it a read if you’re in the mood for a scary vampire tale (that’s right, scary - this isn’t Twilight or True Blood).
You can get a copy of The Strain through Barnes & Noble or Amazon. It has me counting down the days until book two, The Fall (coming out September 21st - I already have it pre-ordered on my nook).
If you’ve read The Strain, or have another favorite vampire book (I Am Legend is my personal favorite), feel free to comment below and let me know which is your favorite.