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The Wayward Pines series of books by Blake Crouch

Please note! that this brief review includes spoilers for the entire book series and is intended primarily as a place for us to talk about the Fox television miniseries in relationship to the books.

The three books of the Wayward Pines book series, Pines, Wayward, and The Last Town, center on the experiences of Secret Service special agent Ethan Burke, who stumbles into a situation in the mysterious town of Wayward Pines, Idaho. Although at first it seems like some sort of mystery in the "isolated town" a la The Prisoner, things take an unexpected turn when Ethan discovers… and let's pause for an adorable spoiler kitten.

[Spoilers for the entire book series below! No kidding!

...that nearly two thousand years have passed, the humans have mutated into monsters, and Wayward Pines is the "real" humanity's last bastion. Unfortunately, Wayward Pines the town is also the brainchild of a maniacal genius billionaire who believes that humanity can only be saved by oppressing, controlling, and way too often killing the people that remain.

My biggest problem with this book series is that I strongly dislike Crouch's writing style.

Constantly break ups.
Into brief sentences.
For effect.

My second biggest problem is that Crouch does a poor job with characterization. I never warmed to Ethan, his main character, even with all of the extensive danger he's put into, as well as the truly revolting and way over the top torture that occurs in the books, especially in flashback. Come on. Pam is ridiculous and I found her impossible to take seriously. And the Abbys? Also hard to take, and I'm having trouble figuring out how they're going to show them in the television series.

Why did I read all three books, then? Well, mostly, I didn't. I spent a lot of time skimming through the repetitive action sequences because the science fiction aspects of the books intrigued me enough that I wanted to find out what happened next, and how it would end. So I guess on that level the books were a success, because I bought all three of them. And the ending was indeed somewhat satisfying. Although I won't ever re-read the books.

Please feel free to comment below on anything about the three books in the series and/or how they relate to the currently airing Wayward Pines series on Fox.
Billie Doux loves good television and spends way too much time writing about it.


  1. I'll start the ball rolling by commenting that the first hour of the series is very faithful to the book, and I skimmed through the first book last week to refresh my memory. I didn't see any significant differences. Except I don't remember anything about the "Easter bombings", and Ethan's son is a lot older than he was in the first book.

  2. Is the book ending much different from the series ending?

  3. Yes, it's very different. Here's an article that says what happens, but basically, they realize they can't survive on the food that they have (something that was discussed very briefly in one of the series episodes but not pursued) and they can't leave because of the Abbies, so they all go into stasis for 10,000 years. We don't find out what they wake up to, though. And Ethan doesn't die.



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