“Hot Zone, The” by Richard Preston

The Hot Zone: A Terrifying True Story
by Richard Preston

ISBN 0-385-47956-5

I was prompted to read Richard Preston’s thriller by a friend who enjoys science fiction. The Hot Zone reads like a novel but is purportedly science NON-fiction. Perhaps that is what makes it so compelling. Actually, I think it is the utter horror of the story that practically turned the pages for me. It is both mind-boggling and humbling to realize that an agent so small possesses such absolute power over certain species of primates. Almost as baffling as the story was a recurring question I had. Why hadn’t I heard about this event in the news? How could I have missed something as horrifying and intriguing as a flesh-eating virus that traveled to America in a shipment of monkeys?

The page turners for me were:

  • Vivid descriptions of the havoc rendered by the virus;
  • The daring search for the source of the virus;
  • The rigorous procedures used in handling the virus both in the field and in the laboratory; and
  • The human side of the victims and the sleuths pursuing elusive biological answers.

© Copyright 1995, 2008, Clancy Cross.  All rights reserved.

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