Friday, December 20, 2013

The Strain, by Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan

(hb; 2009: Book One of The Strain trilogy)

From the inside flap:

"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. 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.

"In a pawnshop in Spanish Harlem, a former professor and survivor of the Holocaust named Abraham Setrakian knows something is happening.  And he knows the time has come, that a war is brewing. . .

"So begins a battle of mammoth proportions as the vampiric virus that has infected New York begins to spill out into the streets.  Eph, who is joined by Setrakian and a motley crew of fighters, must now find a way to stop the contagion and save the city - a city that includes his wife and son - before it is too late."


Good supernatural apocalypse novel with worthwhile characters and plenty of gore and action.  Strain reads like a mix of Bram Stoker's Dracula, Michael Crichton's medical thrillers, del Toro's 2002 film Blade II and Stephen King's better-edited works.  Check it out.

Followed by The Fall.


The resulting television series is scheduled to air sometime in 2014 on the FX network

Corey Stoll plays Dr. Ephraim Goodweather.  Mia Maestro plays Nora Martinez.  John Hurt plays Professor Abraham Setrakian.  Kevin Durand plays Vasiliy Fet.  Miguel Gomez plays Augustin 'Gus' Elizalde. 

Jonathan Hyde plays Eldritch Palmer.  Natalie Brown plays Kelly Goodweather.  Ben Hyland plays Zack Goodweather.  Sean Astin plays Jim Kent.  Robert Maillet plays The Master.

Leslie Hope plays Joan Luss.  Doug Jones has an unnamed (at least thus far) role.  Jack Kesy plays Gabriel Bolivar.  Jonathan Potts plays Capt. Redfern.  Nicholai Witschl plays Ansel Barbour. 

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