#Blogtour The Passengers by John Marrs @johnmarrs1 @EburyPublishing @Tr4cyF3nton #CompulsiveReaders #ThePassengers

 

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The Passengers by John Marrs  Ebury  1st April 2019 (e-book), 30th May 2019 (paperback)

Eight self-drive cars set on a collision course. Who lives, who dies? You decide.

‘Provocative, terrifying and compulsive. Another savagely clever near future thriller’ Cara Hunter, bestselling author of CLOSE TO HOME

The new gripping page-turning thriller for fans of BLACK MIRROR from the bestselling author of HER LAST MOVE and THE ONE – soon to be a major Netflix series.

When someone hacks into the systems of eight self-drive cars, their passengers are set on a fatal collision course.

The passengers are: a TV star, a pregnant young woman, a disabled war hero, an abused wife fleeing her husband, an illegal immigrant, a husband and wife – and parents of two – who are travelling in separate vehicles and a suicidal man. Now the public have to judge who should survive but are the passengers all that they first seem?

My Review

The Passengers was different, oh so very different from anything I have read in a longtime. For the two or three days I read it pushed my imagination to the limits, put my brain into a tailspin and basically dominated my head space to the point I had to discuss with anyone who would listen!

Marrs asked us to imagine a future of driverless cars, cars programmed to avoid traffic jams and most importantly avoid collisions. Then he asked us to think about what would happen if someone hacked into those systems and had control, who wanted us the reader and a jury to decide the fate of eight passengers.

What I liked was that Marrs’s jury covered every aspect of the professional world, the doctor, the lawyer, the religious, the MP and lastly a member of the public.

Each had their own approach, each tackled the dilemma the Hacker threw at them from a differing angle. It allowed Marrs to show us their true characters. You couldn’t help but hate MP Jack Larson, selfish, egotistical, a man full of his own self importance. At the other end of the spectrum you had Libby, your average member of the public. I loved her level headedness, her compassion, her questioning nature and her ability to stand up for herself that made her all the more likeable.

The Passengers themselves were from all walks of life, of differing nationalities, religions, race and age, each with a secret they wanted to keep hidden. This is where Marrs was very very clever, where the novel excelled. What if the Hacker knew those secrets but only chose to share certain snippets of information, information that could be manipulated, twisted to influence our decision making? What if he used social media to involve the world in those decisions? As you can imagine this took the novel onto a whole new level as the opinions and the decisions of the jury became complex, the tension and anger almost unbearable. You held your breath as Marrs took everything to the extreme, as you waited for consequences that you knew could only be devastating and catastrophic.

Each chapter gave us differing perspectives as we felt the fear of the The Passengers, Of Libby’s emotions and turmoil. As time ticked away the pace of the novel became frantic as it reflected the panic of its characters. I think my own heart rate raced furiously as the sense of anticipation grew and I waited for the inevitable big explosion, for everything to come crashing down.

I loved the subtle surprise near the end, the tying up of loose ends that didn’t leave me with more questions than answers that can do often happen in novels.

The Passengers was not only high octane, it was thought provoking, intelligent and absolutely brilliant. Can someone please make it into a film or TV drama as it would make for addictive and thrilling viewing!

I would like to thank Ebury for a copy of The Passengers to read and review and to Tracy Fenton Of Compulsive Readers for inviting My Bookish Blogspot to participate in the blogtour.

About the author

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John Marrs is a former journalist from Northamptonshire, England, who spent 25 years interviewing celebrities from the world of television, film and music for national newspapers and magazines. He wrote for publications including The Guardian’s Guide and Guardian Online; OK! Magazine; Total Film; Empire; Q; GT; The Independent; Star; Reveal; Company; Daily Star and News of the World’s Sunday Magazine. He recently gave up his job to write novels full time. His first car at the age of seventeen was a three-door, Ford Escort with a Batman sticker in the rear windscreen. He thought the sticker was cool at the time.

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