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The City of Mirrors by Justin Cronin

It's alright dad, Caleb said, you're safe now.
Then the lights went out.
I guess at some point I should give all this* up and resign myself to the facts of my life - that there will never be enough time for everything and everything that is not everything will get in everything's way, without a shadow of a doubt. Some six months has passed since I first picked up book three of The Passage trilogy and once more I can't remember any of the characters' names, except Amy, the girl / vampire / heroine / old lady as it turns out of the story. There are some people in it from before, some names I can sort-of scratch at from under the silver foil of my hazy memory, but without ever winning the jackpot of full recall. Peter? Michael? And the former army-type person and now, unsurprisingly, a vampire-type, whose name escapes me.

And there's a new bad guy (of course there is), the original bad guy who has been hiding the whole time in an unwritten back story. 

Well, now it's written. And I can remember nearly nothing of any of it.

Anyway, from what I do remember, Manhattan is the titular city, the soaring skyscrapers still reflecting the rays of the sun like so many mirrors. This bad guy seems to be living in Central Station Terminal in midtown, somewhere he waited for a woman who didn't come. Because she was dead. Now for some reason he's a naughty vampire, pulling the strings behind yet another vampire uprising, this time years after the last one was ostensibly defeated. Humans are losing their fear, defences are dropped, and then it's bitey-bitey time once more. And there's a big boat, some sort of ark metaphor no doubt.

Of course, I could go back and flip idly through the pages to refresh my memory, but I can't be arsed.

I recall being fairly excited to put this trilogy to bed, but for some reason it took me quite a while to follow up - from August 2013 to May 2018 to be exact - and that sends me all the wrong signals. Did I enjoy it? Yes, on reflection I probably did. I do love a good horror novel. Did it go on a bit much, like a Mozart opera or Kubrick's film AI? Too right. Is it worth reading? Well, every book is worth reading, to some degree, and those who prefer their vampire stories more 30 Days Of Night than The Vampire Diaries would probably get a kick from this. I never ever want to discourage anyone from reading a book and forming their own opinion (unless it's Sebastian Faulks) as that would be illiberal. Also, it would be unfair to the author who (probably) survives on generosity of spirit and readerly patronage. So have at it horror fans. It's likely much better than I make out, but then there has been far too much beer and wine since and I fear my drowned synapses have locked me out of my memory palace.


*All this being the pursuit of intertextual connections, the delight in reading, and the smugness that comes from being able to report to YouGov surveys that I read more than 21 books a year.

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