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The Strain by Guillermo del Toro
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The Strain (original 2009; edition 2009)

by Guillermo del Toro, Chuck Hogan (Author)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
2,6612122,240 (3.63)171
Member:angelikat
Title:The Strain
Authors:Guillermo del Toro (Author)
Other authors:Chuck Hogan (Author)
Info:Pymble, NSW ; New York : HarperCollins, 2009.
Collections:Your library, Horror, Ghosties & Thingys, Fiction
Rating:****1/2
Tags:Vampires, Infectious Disease, CDC, Horror

Work details

The Strain by Guillermo Del Toro (2009)

  1. 140
    I Am Legend by Richard Matheson (Joles)
    Joles: The authors treat vampires in a similar light. The Strain could very well be what leads up to Matheson's I Am Legend.
  2. 72
    The Passage by Justin Cronin (smiteme, questionablepotato)
  3. 30
    Patient Zero by Jonathan Maberry (Joles)
    Joles: Undead creatures that reanimate with a nice bit of real-world science thrown in.
  4. 20
    Draculas by Jack Kilborn (Scottneumann)
  5. 20
    Swan Song by Robert McCammon (Phantasma)
    Phantasma: you could say They Thirst would be a more likely reccomendation for this vampire novel. But I think the post-apocalyptic Swan Song is much more closesly related.
  6. 10
    They Thirst by Robert R. McCammon (Scottneumann)
  7. 21
    Children of the Night by Dan Simmons (Scottneumann)
  8. 10
    Midnight Mass by F. Paul Wilson (Scottneumann)
  9. 00
    Uprising: Vampire Federation by Sean McCabe (mamaove)
    mamaove: Good versues evil theme with vampires
  10. 00
    Feed by Mira Grant (trav)
  11. 00
    Live Girls by Ray Garton (dante414)
  12. 00
    The Missing by Sarah Langan (ahstrick)
  13. 11
    Wizard and Glass by Stephen King (kraaivrouw)
  14. 11
    Necroscope by Brian Lumley (leahsimone)
  15. 00
    Salem's Lot by Stephen King (Moomin_Mama)
    Moomin_Mama: Those who enjoyed the undead returning to their original homes, and the horror of the vampire in a domestic setting, will love Salem's Lot, which did it first and did it a lot better.
  16. 12
    The Green Mile Book 2: The Mouse on the Mile by Stephen King (ShelfMonkey)
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» See also 171 mentions

English (203)  Spanish (4)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  Danish (1)  French (1)  Finnish (1)  All languages (211)
Showing 1-5 of 203 (next | show all)
My first exposure to The Strain was through the television show, which I found to be so awful that I couldn't make it past the second episode. I figured I would give the novel a chance, and it turned out to be better than I anticipated and far better than the television show. Despite that, there are still some plot holes in the novel that bring it down.

I think that the overall concept is interesting (which was the reason why I tried out the television show to begin with). A plane lands in New York, and all of the passengers but four appear to be dead, except there is nothing to show how they all died and the four survivors offer no incite. Ephraim is a scientist working for the CDC investigating the case. The culprit is a master vampire, whose coffin was on the plane. Even though the baddies are vampires, vampirism is considered a virus here. I never saw the virus connection, since they are still pretty much traditional vampires. My guess is that is how they make the CDC connection. There are seven master vampires spread throughout the world and the master on the plane is trying to create a war and annihilate the human race.

Although I generally liked this novel, there were some definite plot holes. The most glaring one is that the second richest person in the world helps the master vampire get across the seas from Europe to the United States to set up this invasion, which made absolutely no sense to me. Why would someone with so much to lose try to destroy the human race? The explanation provided was lame. Generally, I thought the characters were solid. I especially liked Setrakian, a Nazi prison camp survivor, who has spent his whole life preparing for a vampire infestation after the Master fed on people in his prison camp. There was some positive and some negative, but overall this was good enough that I would like to continue reading this series.

Carl Alves - author of Blood Street ( )
  Carl_Alves | Mar 22, 2015 |
A plane dies on the tarmac and no one knows what's going on. CDC dude Ephraim (of the crappy divorce and weird child) and the lady who isn't well written so I don't remember her name (doesn't pass the bechdel test) anyway, the vampire disease is passed through parasitic slugs and the Big Dog vampire is almost as awesome as the old man with the sword cane. ( )
  ooshwiggity | Feb 1, 2015 |
Yes! Vampires the way they should be! Monsters! The Master vampire was terrifying. Excellent book. ( )
  VincentDarlage | Jan 30, 2015 |
Good book. it reminds me of Blade II. ( )
  dom76 | Jan 7, 2015 |
NO SPOILERS

It was the first of this genre I have read in 2010. I have been missing out. ( )
  Urthwild | Nov 30, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 203 (next | show all)
I am torn about The Strain. I like it for all of its blood-sucking charms, but in order to do so, I’ve got to overlook some fairly major shortcomings in its mechanics. And I’ve got to do it all while somehow managing to avoid blaming Guillermo for anything.
 
It's so creepy that when I told my wife and daughter about it *they* got creeped out just from my description.
 
The Strain is a breakneck thrill ride chronicling only the first four days of the vampire plague that may destroy civilization. The cinematic quality really comes though, making the book feel more like a action blockbuster than a thought-provoking horror novel. The publisher is hyping the heck out of this book, and it will sell like a Dan Brown of the Undead. It has some dopey parts, but is also pretty entertaining and scary. This would be an excellent vacation read, although I would not recommend reading the first fifty pages on an airplane if you are a nervous flier. Save it for the beach soaking up the UV rays.
added by PhoenixTerran | editio9, Chris Hsiang (Jun 2, 2009)
 

» Add other authors (15 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Guillermo Del Toroprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Hogan, Chuckmain authorall editionsconfirmed
Raitio, RistoTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Information from the German Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
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Important events
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Epigraph
Dedication
Dedicated to all nightmares, past and present, and to all the monsters in my nursery: May you never leave me alone. -GDT
For my Lila -CH
To Lorenza, Mariana, and Marisa ...
and to all the monsters in my nursery: May you never leave me alone. -GDT
For Lila -CH
First words
The Legend of Jusef Sardu
"Once upon a time," said Abraham Setrakian's grandmother, "there was a giant."
Der var engang en kæmpe
Quotations
Nothing can unman you like an un-man.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description


They have always been here. Vampires. In secret and in darkness. Waiting. Now their time has come.

In one week, Manhattan will be gone. In one month, the country.

In two months—the world.

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 his city—a city that includes his wife and son—before it is too late.

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Abraham Setrakian, a former professor and survivor of the Holocaust, joins forces with CDC specialist Eph Goodweather to battle a vampiric virus that has infected New York in this first installment in a thrilling trilogy about a horrifying battle between man and vampire that threatens all humanity.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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