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Infected - Scott Sigler. Please not Ciao....this is not an audio book.
'When you hear the voices it's already too late'.
I have to say, I find writing book reviews particularly difficult. There is a thin line between enticing someone with enough plot and information to encourage them to read the book for themselves, and too much plot so that they pretty much don't need to read it.
At just over 450 pages this is not too long, in fact I read it in 4 days, as one of my 'holiday books'.
The cover was what initially attracted me to the book, and when I turned the book over, the short synopsis and recommendations from other authors persuaded me to purchase. At 3 for two in WH Smiths (or was it Waterstones) I did not need too much persuasion.
~~Genre and background~~ Part sci-fi, part thriller, part conspiracy I guess, well, it has elements of all three in it. Therefore if you like any of these genres it might suit.
The author apparently is 'the world's most successful podcasting author' and this book was particularly well bought in the USA before being released in UK with a different front cover.
~~~Synopsis~~~ There is some sort of infection (not going to tell you exactly what or how) happening in America, not all over America, and not large scale, but enough to warrant the attention of government agencies.
The government is mainly interested as in all cases the 'victims' of the infection have gone crazy, killing people in the last throws of the infection and/or causing massive damage by fires.
The infection has the potential to be quite catastrophic to the nation, even the World and to keep it under wraps requires all the covert skills of the agencies, and to tackle it requires all the equipment and weapons at the Governments disposal.
The plot follows three main protagonists and brings in several other significant others:
Perry Dawsey is infected by the 'infection' and we get to see him progress through the book as the infection takes hold. We get to see a quite 'damaged' young man both emotionally and physically go through different stages of this infection and become very, very unwell, both physically and mentally. This character is an interesting guy, ex professional (American) footballer, very strong, very damaged by his childhood, and very angry, which he manages, just.
Dew Phillips is an undercover CIA/special op's character who has been tasked with finding and 'bringing in' or neutralising any victims of the infection before they do any more harm. Many clichés abound regarding this guy, yet somehow it does not seem to matter, he is deep yet also very shallow and focussed on what he has to do.
Margaret Montoya is a biologist who is tasked to find out what this infection is; virus, bacteria, chemical warfare, or something altogether different. We do not learn an awful lot about her, but she is significant to the development of the plot.
~~~~Flow and style~~~~ The book actually flows really well, we see an initial story line that is developed, gathers pace, switches between scenarios whilst linking things well and concludes as a big climax, good.
The author is very descriptive and has a knack of making one visualise the story, even in parts where you really do not want to visualise (you'll see). The book can be quite disturbing and gruesome.
The author is no classic writer, nor is he particularly fluent in anything other than basic story telling, and for me, that is okay, this book does not pretend to deliver more than it does. It is a fast paced, thriller of a read that one does not have to think about too much, it is easily absorbed, and this is due very much to the style of writing.
~~~~~Final thoughts~~~~~ I really enjoyed this book, it served a purpose as a holiday read, my wife and son have also read it and feel similarly that it is a decent book, in a similar vein (though less complex) as Stephen King or Dean Koontz.
I have a feeling that we may well see a movie version of this book in the coming years.
Amazon are selling this for £3.99, I'm sure it can be bought cheaper, worth a go