The Night Eternal by Guillermo del Toro & Chuck Hogan
The Night Eternal is the finale to Guillermo del Toro and Chuck Hogan‘s THE STRAIN trilogy and I found it simply… inconsistent. I enjoyed the conclusion to the mythology which includes the genesis of the strain itself, but I was disappointed in the conclusions to the various plot threads. This review will contain some mild spoilers for the ending of The Fall.
The dark and serious mythology really drove the first two books, followed closely by development of the characters. While the myth drove my excitement to finish the trilogy, the flat characterizations in The Night Eternal made it more of a chore. Something was lost at the conclusion of The Fall following the death of a key character and the vampire-napping of Ephraim Goodweather’s son, Zachary.
There were hints of strength throughout The Night Eternal — the writing is good and the violence is heavy and believable. The apocalyptic world built in the first two books continues to build and remain authentic, but the plot threads became disjointed, and conclusions are reached too conveniently.
I heartily recommend this read for anyone who’s read the first two books in the STRAIN trilogy. The big ‘reveal’ behind The Master’s creation, as well as the newly developed backstory of Mr. Quinlan, make The Night Eternal a wholly worthwhile investment. Just keep your expectations measured.
Okay, but you got to use “vampire-napping” in a review. How cool is that?
If nothing else, reading through the trilogy has to be worth that!
Absolutely. I find, generally, I’m a much bigger fan of early-stage world-building and plot initiation than conclusions. Of course a lot has to do with the particular material. I think you’ll find that same trend in my upcoming reviews of Clarke’s ‘Odyssey’ series…
I had to re-read what I wrote…couldn’t figure out why I would reference a sleeping vampire. But what I actually wrote makes more sense.
I understood the reference immediately, but I also liked the idea of a “vampire-nap” like a “cat-nap.”