Book Review – “Pandemic” by Scott Sigler
Eight years ago I married to a nice young woman, started at my current job, and listened to my very first podcast novel, Scott Sigler’s “Infected”. Fast forward to eight years, my divorce is nearing completion, I am starting a different work account than what I was originally hired on to, and Scott has released his final book in the “Infected” trilogy, “Pandemic”. 2014 seems a year for some eras to end and others to begin.
As most, if not all of you know, I am a writer when I’m not busy being a family man or working at my day job. Like any other writer, I find influence from so many masters of the craft. It started with Stephen King when I was thirteen, and has grown to include J.K. Rowling, Christopher Golden, Tracy Hickman, and Scott Sigler, among others. Stephen and Scott are two writers whose stories I read almost religiously and are two big reasons why I decided to begin pursuing a writing career that I feel is just starting to show signs of blossoming. I have even introduced my oldest son to both men’s works and he is already hooked on each.
To give you the rundown on the “Infected” trilogy before I dive into my review of the latest book, an alien race sends out satellites containing artificial intelligence and the means to create a virus intended to exterminate any sentient race it comes across. Their purpose is to eliminate any threats they discover long before they branch out into space. One such satellite, called an Orbital, runs across Earth and begins to send out it’s payload, which turns ordinary people into psychopathic killers. As each book progresses, the Orbital finds ways to modify the virus to improve it’s effectiveness. Blue triangles mark the infected in the first book, “Infected”. One person, Perry Dawsey resisted, but at a brutal cost to himself. In “Contagious”, the virus mutated in the wild, adding a second strain which can pass the virus via a kiss with the result of much death and destruction. Everyone thought the virus eradicated after that, but they were wrong.
“Pandemic” takes place five years after the events of “Contagious”, and Dr. Margaret Montoya is a shell of her former self. Her marriage to agent Clarence Otto, the special agent assigned to protect her in the first book, is less than happy. She has become recluse, punishing herself by continuously reading Internet posts and criticisms blaming her for the destruction in the second book. After the latest in another round of arguments ends with Agent Otto stating their marriage is over, a telephone call from an old friend in the government calls the both of them back into service. The virus has returned and is even deadlier than ever.
I have waited for this book since I finished reading “Contagious” years ago. Scott brings the characters to life, whether it’s on the written page or his narration in audiobook format. This book is the emphasis of this. I found myself not wanting to write my own stories or fall asleep on time just so I could read a few more pages. I found the story to grip you tightly and not let go until the roller coaster ride is finally done. The ending is EPIC in scope and gives a definitive ending to a thrilling story. I give this book a 5 out of 5.
As always, if you want to leave a comment, please do so below. Let me know your opinion and feel free to share mine with your friends, family, and yes, even your enemies. I’m on Facebook, Twitter, Google +, and via e-mail at email@example.com. And check out my stories in the “Darwin Murders”, “Bump Off Your Enemies”, and “Fresh Blood” anthologies.
And remember… Why so serious?