The Ferryman: A Novel (Hardcover)
May 2023 Indie Next List
“The Ferryman was such an engrossing speculative fiction! With the flavor of The Giver at the beginning, and something entirely different by the end, Cronin comments on social class, society, and what makes us human. A must read!”
— Danica Ramgoolam, Townie Books, Crested Butte, CO
From the author of The Passage comes a riveting standalone novel about a group of survivors on a hidden island utopia—where the truth isn’t what it seems.
A POLYGON BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR
The islands of Prospera lie in a vast ocean, in splendid isolation from the rest of humanity—or whatever remains of it.
Citizens of the main island enjoy privileged lives. They are attended to by support staff who live on a cramped neighboring island, where whispers of revolt are brewing—but for the Prosperans, life is perfection. And when the end of life approaches, they’re sent to a mysterious third island, where their bodies are refreshed, their memories are wiped away, and they return to start life anew.
Proctor Bennett is a ferryman, whose job it is to enforce the retirement process when necessary. He never questions his work, until the day he receives a cryptic message:
“The world is not the world.”
These simple words unlock something he has secretly suspected. They seep into strange dreams of the stars and the sea. They give him the unshakable feeling that someone is trying to tell him something important.
Something no one could possibly imagine, something that could change the fate of humanity itself.
“The Ferryman is next to impossible to put down once you’ve read the first few pages. Exciting, mysterious, and totally satisfying, this is a book to get lost in.”—Stephen King
“A mind-bending novel full of big ideas and a roller coaster’s worth of twists and turns—so powerful and thrilling!”—Andy Weir
“Fiction doesn’t get better than this. A transcendent meditation on the human condition, delivered through gorgeous prose, characters who steal your heart, and riveting storytelling that is guaranteed to put the rest of your life on hold until you’ve turned the final page.”—Blake Crouch
“Cronin’s shrewd world-building allows us to have it both ways: We sink into aspirational fantasy even as we relish the author’s sly commentary on a certain species of coastal elite. . . . It’s a careful book with a limited cast, animated by the bonds of parental and romantic love. An undercurrent of grief, organized around a pure, almost unobjectionable family tragedy, forms the book’s emotional core.”—The New York Times Book Review
“An intricate mystery that deals with loss and devastation on levels both personal and global. It’s a love story as well, or rather a catalog of love stories.”—The Boston Globe
“A wondrous epic both brilliant and terrifying . . . As complex as his imagined worlds become, Justin Cronin is always reminding us, masterfully, of the simplest and deepest bonds. The Ferryman, to me, is a novel about love.”—Amanda Eyre Ward
“Complex and brilliant . . . a carefully weaved and detailed world . . . This was not just a novel, but an experience.”—The Fantasy Review
“Unique, spellbinding and utterly thought-provoking. Just when you are convinced that you have anticipated the ending, The Ferryman delivers a heart-wrenching twist, leading you down another road entirely. The Ferryman was non-stop action, all leading to the inevitable conclusion that will stick with you.”—Mystery and Suspense Magazine
“Cronin’s firm command of the plot’s sinuous dynamics, and his creation of believable characters shaped by well-wrought strengths and flaws, make this bold gesture work. The result is a sensational speculative tale that is sure to get people talking.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“It’s a hefty book that moves with an astounding quickness—yet another excellent offering from an author with a boundless imagination and talent to spare. Twisty, thrilling, and beautifully written.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
“A page-turner that is impossible to put down . . . a profoundly genius culmination of every twisty event and unveiled secret caps off this mind-bending masterpiece. . . .”—Library Journal (starred review)
“A great option for fans of the accessible, compelling, and thought-provoking [science fiction] of authors such as Blake Crouch, Cherie Dimaline, and Neal Stephenson.”—Booklist (starred review)