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The City of Mirrors

Cover of The City of Mirrors

The City of Mirrors

The Passage Series, Book 3
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#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • "A thrilling finale to a trilogy that will stand as one of the great achievements in American fantasy fiction."—Stephen King
You followed The Passage. You faced The Twelve. Now enter The City of Mirrors for the final reckoning. As the bestselling epic races to its breathtaking finale, Justin Cronin's band of hardened survivors await the second coming of unspeakable darkness.
The world we knew is gone. What world will rise in its place?
The Twelve have been destroyed and the terrifying hundred-year reign of darkness that descended upon the world has ended. The survivors are stepping outside their walls, determined to build society anew—and daring to dream of a hopeful future.
But far from them, in a dead metropolis, he waits: Zero. The First. Father of the Twelve. The anguish that shattered his human life haunts him, and the hatred spawned by his transformation burns bright. His fury will be quenched only when he destroys Amy—humanity's only hope, the Girl from Nowhere who grew up to rise against him.
One last time light and dark will clash, and at last Amy and her friends will know their fate.
Praise for The City of Mirrors

"Compulsively readable."—The New York Times Book Review
"The City of Mirrors is poetry. Thrilling in every way it has to be, but poetry just the same . . . The writing is sumptuous, the language lovely, even when the action itself is dark and violent."—The Huffington Post
"This really is the big event you've been waiting for . . . A true last stand that builds and comes with a bloody, roaring payoff you won't see coming, then builds again to the big face off you've been waiting for."—NPR
"A masterpiece . . . with The City of Mirrors, the third volume in The Passage trilogy, Justin Cronin puts paid to what may well be the finest post-apocalyptic epic in our dystopian-glutted times. A stunning achievement by virtually every measure."—The National Post

"Justin Cronin's Passage trilogy is remarkable for the unremitting drive of its narrative, for the breathtaking sweep of its imagined future, and for the clear lucidity of its language."—Stephen King
"Superb . . . This conclusion to bestseller Cronin's apocalyptic thriller trilogy ends with all of the heartbreak, joy, and unexpected twists of fate that events in The Passage and The Twelve foreordained."Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Readers who have been patiently awaiting the conclusion to Cronin's sweeping postapocalyptic trilogy are richly rewarded with this epic, heart-wrenching novel. . . . Not only does this title bring the series to a thrilling and satisfying conclusion, but it also exhibits Cronin's moving exploration of love as both a destructive force and an elemental need, elevating this work among its dystopian peers."Library Journal (starred review)
Praise for Justin Cronin
"One of those rare authors who work on two different levels, blending elegantly crafted literary fiction with cliff-hanging thrills."—Fort Worth Star-Telegram
From the Hardcover edition.
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • "A thrilling finale to a trilogy that will stand as one of the great achievements in American fantasy fiction."—Stephen King
You followed The Passage. You faced The Twelve. Now enter The City of Mirrors for the final reckoning. As the bestselling epic races to its breathtaking finale, Justin Cronin's band of hardened survivors await the second coming of unspeakable darkness.
The world we knew is gone. What world will rise in its place?
The Twelve have been destroyed and the terrifying hundred-year reign of darkness that descended upon the world has ended. The survivors are stepping outside their walls, determined to build society anew—and daring to dream of a hopeful future.
But far from them, in a dead metropolis, he waits: Zero. The First. Father of the Twelve. The anguish that shattered his human life haunts him, and the hatred spawned by his transformation burns bright. His fury will be quenched only when he destroys Amy—humanity's only hope, the Girl from Nowhere who grew up to rise against him.
One last time light and dark will clash, and at last Amy and her friends will know their fate.
Praise for The City of Mirrors

"Compulsively readable."—The New York Times Book Review
"The City of Mirrors is poetry. Thrilling in every way it has to be, but poetry just the same . . . The writing is sumptuous, the language lovely, even when the action itself is dark and violent."—The Huffington Post
"This really is the big event you've been waiting for . . . A true last stand that builds and comes with a bloody, roaring payoff you won't see coming, then builds again to the big face off you've been waiting for."—NPR
"A masterpiece . . . with The City of Mirrors, the third volume in The Passage trilogy, Justin Cronin puts paid to what may well be the finest post-apocalyptic epic in our dystopian-glutted times. A stunning achievement by virtually every measure."—The National Post

"Justin Cronin's Passage trilogy is remarkable for the unremitting drive of its narrative, for the breathtaking sweep of its imagined future, and for the clear lucidity of its language."—Stephen King
"Superb . . . This conclusion to bestseller Cronin's apocalyptic thriller trilogy ends with all of the heartbreak, joy, and unexpected twists of fate that events in The Passage and The Twelve foreordained."Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"Readers who have been patiently awaiting the conclusion to Cronin's sweeping postapocalyptic trilogy are richly rewarded with this epic, heart-wrenching novel. . . . Not only does this title bring the series to a thrilling and satisfying conclusion, but it also exhibits Cronin's moving exploration of love as both a destructive force and an elemental need, elevating this work among its dystopian peers."Library Journal (starred review)
Praise for Justin Cronin
"One of those rare authors who work on two different levels, blending elegantly crafted literary fiction with cliff-hanging thrills."—Fort Worth Star-Telegram
From the Hardcover edition.
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Excerpts-
  • From the book

    I

    The Daughter

    98–­101 a.v.

    There is another world but it is this one.

    —-Paul Éluard

    1

    Central Pennsylvania

    August 98 a.v.

    Eight months after the liberation of the Homeland

    The ground yielded easily under her blade, unlocking a black smell of earth. The air was hot and moist; birds were singing in the trees. On her hands and knees, she stabbed the dirt, chopping it loose. One handful at a time, she scooped it away. Some of the weakness had abated but not all. Her body felt loose, disorganized, drained. There was pain, and the memory of pain. Three days had passed, or was it four? Perspiration beaded on her face; she licked her lips to taste the salt. She dug and dug. The sweat ran in rivulets, falling into the earth. That's where everything goes, Alicia thought, in the end. Everything goes into the earth.

    The pile beside her swelled. How deep was enough? Three feet down, the soil began to change. It became colder, with the odor of clay. It seemed like a sign. She rocked back on her boots and took a long drink from her canteen. Her hands were raw; the flesh at the base of her thumb had peeled back in a sheet. She placed the web of her hand to her mouth and used her teeth to sever the flap of skin and spat it into the dirt.

    Soldier was waiting for her at the edge of the clearing, his jaws loudly working on a stand of waist—high grass. The grace of his haunches, his rich mane and blue roan coat, the magnificence of his hooves and teeth and the great black marbles of his eyes: an aura of splendor surrounded him. He possessed, when he chose, an absolute calm, then, in the next moment, could perform remarkable deeds. His wise face lifted at the sound of her approach. I see. We're ready. He turned in a slow arc, his neck bent low, and followed her into the trees to the place where she had pitched her tarp. On the ground beside Alicia's bloody bedroll lay the small bundle, swaddled in a stained blanket. Her daughter had lived less than an hour, yet in that hour Alicia had become a mother.

    Soldier watched as she emerged. The baby's face was covered; Alicia drew back the cloth. Soldier bent his face to the child's, his nostrils flaring, breathing in her scent. Tiny nose and eyes and rosebud mouth, startling in their humanness; her head was covered in a cap of soft red hair. But there was no life, no breath. Alicia had wondered if she would be capable of loving her—-this child conceived in terror and pain, fathered by a monster. A man who had beaten her, raped her, cursed her. How foolish she'd been.

    She returned to the clearing. The sun was directly overhead; insects buzzed in the grass, a rhythmic pulsing. Soldier stood beside her as she laid her daughter in the grave. When her labor had started, Alicia had begun to pray. Let her be all right. As the hours of agony dissolved into one another, she had felt death's cold presence inside her. The pain pounded through her, a wind of steel; it echoed in her cells like thunder. Something was wrong. Please, God, protect her, protect us. But her prayers had fallen into the void.

    The first handful of soil was the hardest. How did one do it? Alicia had buried many men. Some she'd known, and some she hadn't; only one she'd loved. The boy, Hightop. So funny, so alive, then gone. She let the dirt sift through her fingers. It struck the cloth with a pattering sound, like the first spits of rain upon leaves. Bit by bit her daughter disappeared. Goodbye,...

About the Author-
  • Justin Cronin is the New York Times bestselling author of The Passage, The Twelve, Mary and O'Neil (which won the PEN/Hemingway Award and the Stephen Crane Prize), and The Summer Guest. Other honors for his writing include a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts and a Whiting Writers' Award. A Distinguished Faculty Fellow at Rice University, he divides his time between Houston, Texas, and Cape Cod, Massachusetts.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from March 28, 2016
    This conclusion to bestseller Cronin’s apocalyptic thriller trilogy ends with all of the heartbreak, joy, and unexpected twists of fate that events in The Passage and The Twelve foreordained. It’s nearly a century after the release of the Easter Virus that decimated humanity and several years since the last of the infected people known as virals were seen. The citizens of Kerrville, Tex., one of the last human enclaves, are just beginning to feel confident enough to settle outside the borders of their protected community. But when pets, and then people, begin disappearing mysteriously, it becomes horrifyingly evident that virals are on the rampage again—and that this time there may be no stopping them. As in the two previous novels, Cronin skillfully manages a large cast of characters, all of whom he has endowed with fully developed personalities that engage the reader emotionally. Although its plot is understandably heavily dependent on events in the first two books, this novel is a superb capstone to a modern horror thriller epic. 15-city author tour. Agent: Ellen Levine, Trident Media Group.

  • The National Post "A masterpiece . . . with The City of Mirrors, the third volume in The Passage trilogy, Justin Cronin puts paid to what may well be the finest post-apocalyptic epic in our dystopian-glutted times. A stunning achievement by virtually every measure."
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    Random House Publishing Group
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  • Copyright Protection (DRM) required by the Publisher may be applied to this title to limit or prohibit printing or copying. File sharing or redistribution is prohibited. Your rights to access this material expire at the end of the lending period. Please see Important Notice about Copyrighted Materials for terms applicable to this content.

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The Passage Series, Book 3
Justin Cronin
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