Thursday, November 6, 2014

The Night Eternal review

I’m down to the Return of the Jedi of the tapeworm vampire series (a.k.a The Strain) or The Night Eternal.

The Night Eternal (The Strain Trilogy, #3)

We get back into this world two years after the events of The Fall. The tapeworm vampire holocaust is in full swing. The world is covered in a sickly layer of poison that blocks the sun, save for a few hours a day. The Master has eyes everywhere and his vampires rule through fear. The infrastructure of the world is working, but at a bare minimum. Humans are still around, but they have been placed into sort of casts. There are the lackeys of the Master and his brood. They are part security, private army, prison guard and even civil servants. There are the dregs who form a working class to keep this new world running with various facilities. Then there are the outlaws who work to bring down the vampire rule or are thugs who take advantage of this new world order and run a black market industry. Finally there are the humans that are tasked as food and fertility specimens.

It is all very bleak, but there is hope. See Eph Goodweather and his band of miscreants have an ancient text that tells all about the vampires. Sure they can’t read it (yet) but it houses all the knowledge of what they are and how to stop them. All they have to do is survive the vampires and themselves. See relations have gone to pot in the little human gang. Gus the gangbanger has his own mission, which is by killing them in small raids, ambushes and terrorist style attacks. Fet has been travelling the world looking for the whereabouts of the ancients and someone to read this ancient text. Oh yeah, he also has found a nuke to use against the Master. Nora is trying to keep her mother alive, trying to start a romance with Fet and keep tabs on Eph. Eph is still all broke up over his wife and son. Plus he is a drunken pill popper now to boot. They are a bit of a dysfunctional family/ rebel alliance.

Since this is the final book, we all know that there is a definite end to move toward. There is a final reveal about the origin of the vampires and that wasn’t awful. I really had no real idea how it was going to be explained, and it wasn’t truly terrible. A smattering of double double (quadruple crossing) crossing occurs. A lucky boy gets a zoo, castle, a cool new dad and a gun in this new world. A bunch of foretold signs and portents happen, but foretold by whom and why?  There is a prison break. Big losses occur for both sides. There is more action than last two novels. A final and couple of family reunion happens. There is a touch of revenge (that I didn’t care about but for other people it was probably sweet). A final show down and then the big big finish! Sounds like a lot huh?

The Night Eternal is a descent finish to this trilogy. The nagging questions I had were all answered. The template used to keep the human race down and the vampires fed was interesting and surprising how they came up with the idea. Hey! Who also knew that B+ blood was the best tasting? I sure didn’t, but that was a strange reveal. The creep factor is very low as is the horror in this final book. That isn’t to say it is not there, it is just much much lower than the previous two novels. Why? Well, because there is a lot more action. The action sequences are pretty frantic and more intense than the previous two novels. The build toward, and the events at, the end had a smattering of predictability. At least it was a complete ending to the series. I still think the main characters are a bit meh, but the story surrounding them is enjoyable. This is still a descent series and worth a read for fans of creepy monster stories.

It is also a ton better than what FX is doing, and probably will continue to do, with the t.v. series. 

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