After an auto accident that occurs while conducting a search for his missing ex-partner, Secret Service agent Ethan Burke wakes up in the small town of Wayward Pines, Idaho. His ID, wallet, and phone are all missing. No calls can be made out of the town. The roads are seem to lead back to the same location. And a thirty foot high electric fence surrounds the area. When people begin turning up dead, Ethan must work to discover the secret behind the sleepy town of Wayward Pines.
That’s a quick synopsis from the first book in this series, Pines. It seemed unfair to potentially spoil anything from the previous novel, as it is so much fun and I encourage anyone who loves a good thriller to go pick it up immediately.
First off, let me just commend this novel for making me almost-kinda-sorta-want to visit Idaho. Crouch describes it as a strikingly beautiful area filled with aspen trees, starry skies, and forbidding mountains. You can almost taste the fresh mountain air. Reading this novel was one of the first time I had ever stopped to really consider the geography of the state of Idaho. No offense, Idahoans. I also grew up in a highly overlooked state. I feel you.
“For every perfect little town, there’s something ugly underneath. No dream without the nightmare”
Wayward is an entertaining, uncomplicated read that still manages to raise important questions, as all good science fiction must do. What begins as a relatively straightforward murder-mystery quickly evolves into a debate on societal security versus personal freedom. At what point do we need to stop sacrificing for the greater good? What price is too high to pay for safety?
Blake Crouch is quickly becoming one of my new favorite authors. His writing style is fast-paced and compelling, yet accessible. It’s science fiction in a Star Trek sense, a irresistible mix of thrills and sentiment, with a dash of science thrown on for flavor.
My Rating: 4.5/5
Wayward Pines has been adapted into a TV show that is currently in its second season on Fox. The third novel in the trilogy, The Last Town, was released in 2014.
Happy reading everyone!