May 12, 2009

Guillermo del Toro & Chuck Hogan: The Strain

I have never seen Pan's Labyrinth so it is my thought that I could not fully appreciate receiving an advanced readers copy of a book co-written by Guillermo del Toro as well as others may. It's a movie which often caught my curiosity but has greatly more since my reading of this book.

The Strain is the first book in a trilogy which starts out as being set in New York. I loved this. Reading about a place I have been was amazing and though del Toro and Hogan describe the setting to a 'T' the story was further exciting to me throughout the book because of this. I knew all about, for example, those rats, which I could only nod along to as I read. Do not misjudge me and think I feel the subject of rats exciting. They terrify me. Perhaps having been to New York and seen the rats saved me from going over the edge in my reading of this book. The Strain was quite the frightening story.

It all began with a grandmother's rather chilling tale to her grandson. I could not believe what I was reading. I was impressed. I was also worried. The Strain could only after all become scarier. Scarier it much became and I found myself thinking of what had before my reading of this book been the scariest book I had ever read.

Stephen King's A Bag of Bones may not be that scary to some but it had been enough that aside from reading Different Seasons I had put a black pen to the author's name in a mental note to myself to never read his books again. The Strain went past that but unlike A Bag of Bones, I was glued and the book had me unable to stop reading. I was unable, even, to not wish I had not so very long to wait for the book that would follow this.

The Strain terrified me so that I could not sit in a lit room without an open door. I could not read without my cats jumping onto my lap or poking their heads up from where their bodies were hidden below making me scream. I could not sleep for fear of monsters. I finished reading this book feeling it was the ultimate scary book. Never have I read a vampire book as half as frightening as this one.

Bravo, del Toro and Hogan! I cannot wait for the next one. I passed along my copy of The Strain to a friend who enjoys scary books and movies like none other I know. I await their call and hearing of their trouble sleeping at night.


Restless Wit said...

LOL!!! I had the same reaction when I was reading it. Every noise I heard got me startled and I was so scared there would be another black out in New York while I was reading the book and I would faint from fear that the book would come true in the darkness. Good review.

elbakerone said...

Great review Kerian! It was really scary and I had a hard time reading it at night because, not only did it give me scary dreams, it was way too hard to put down! I can't wait until the rest of the series comes out!

Kerian said...

Restless Witt,
I feared the same for New York! Isn't that funny? It had amused me greatly. I had to tell myself I was being crazy. Much thanks for your kind words!

Thanks! I had trouble reading it at night for the same reasons and just as much look forward to the release of the rest of the series.