In this sequel to John Wyndham's "The Day of the Triffids", 25 years have elapsed and Bill Mason's son David sets off for New York to meet humans who are immune to triffid poison. Here he comes face to face with one of his father's oldest enemies.
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Clark's opening consciously echoes Wyndham's. In Day, narrator Bill Masen woke to a world blinded by strange radiations. Twenty five years later, his son David wakes to a different mysterious darkness. When people can't see, those deadly walking GM vegetables the triffids have the advantage. They got out of hand in Day and now not only dominate the continents but are learning how to invade human refuges like the Masens' Isle of Wight.
Air pilot David's high-altitude investigation of what's hiding the sun leads to unexpected dangers and contact with explorers from triffid-besieged Manhattan Island. A wonderful place but with something rotten underneath--and its leader's plans for reclaiming the Earth verge on the insane.
Simon Clark, a devoted fan of The Day of the Triffids, is best known for horror fiction. Although he does a fair pastiche of Wyndham's very British understated narrative style, this often escalates into darker imagery and moments of memorable nastiness. The triffids have evolved new, lethal tricks but these pale into insignificance besides the unspeakable things that obsessed humans can do to one another. In the long run, coping with triffids may well be easier.
The Night of the Triffids builds to a slam-bang action climax, not terribly Wyndhamesque but still gripping. A good old-fashioned read with slick modern trimmings and hints of another sequel. --David Langford
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