Author: Blake Crouch
This is the first book in the Wayward Pines series. I watched the television show first, before knowing it was based on a book series. The television show follows the book relatively closely. There are some differences in characterizations and events for more dramatic effect on the small screen, but the essential plot line is the same. As is usually the case, the book is more descriptive and offers more insight into the main character's thoughts.
Secret Service Agent Ethan Burke is sent to Wayward Pines, Idaho to look for two missing federal agents. But, he is involved in a serious car accident upon arrival and wakes up unable to remember much of anything. As he struggles to make sense of the world around him, he notices that something isn't quite right about Wayward Pines. Residents behave strangely, and nobody will assist him. His briefcase is missing. His cell phone, wallet, ID and other personal belongings are gone. He can't call his wife or his superiors. There isn't even any internet access. Burke is effectively cut off from the world. What is the secret of Wayward Pines? Why can't anyone leave town? And, why is the entire area surrounded by an electrified fence?
I enjoyed this book. The pacing and tension were great. The science involved is far-fetched, but I was able to suspend reality and just enjoy the story. It's science-FICTION, not science-fact, after all. I found the premise interesting, engaging and horrific. Nurse Pam and Dr. Pilcher are scary as hell.
This book is not for the feint of heart. Agent Burke was tortured after being captured at Fallujah, and there are vivid descriptions of the psychological effect his torturer had on him. Crouch doesn't go into details about what was done to Burke physically, but more the effects on his mind. Somehow that is even more terrifying than blood and gore. At Wayward Pines, Nurse Pam and Dr. Pilcher's antics are just as bad. Dr. Pilcher truly believes the end justifies the means. The way his mind works is truly horrific.
I love the cover art for this book. It's really eye-catching, and fits the story.
I'm definitely starting book 2 immediately! I haven't watched season 2 of Wayward Pines yet. I've kept the episodes saved on the DVR. I'm reading the book first this time!
There are 3 books in the Wayward Pines series. Crouch has written more than a dozen novels, including Abandon and Snowbound. His next book, Dark Matter, is coming out July 26th, 2016.