It’s a little surreal, to be living through history, to know that one day our children will be taught about the events of today in a history class. But let’s face it, The Virus That Shall Not Be Named won’t just be written about in the history books, it’s going to provide great fodder for authors. It won’t be the first, or the last pandemic that has inspired authors of both fiction and non-fiction to put pen to paper, and I’m sure we’ll have some gripping novels and thought provoking analyses to read in the not so distant future.
If you’re wanting to dig your talons into some reads about plagues and pandemics right now (an oddly popular pastime during this pandemic), then here’s the blurbs of a few that we have on the shelf at the Bindoon Library.
Pandemic by A G Riddle:
Day 01: Mandera County, Kenya.
A young man arrives at a remote hospital. He’s burning with fever and barely conscious. He’s also bleeding from his eyes.
Fearing an Ebola-like outbreak, the World Health Organisation scrambles a rapid response team headed by leading epidemiologist Dr. Peyton Shaw. But what she finds in Kenya is beyond her worst fears. The world is facing an outbreak quite unlike anything previously documented. In just two weeks’ time every corner of the planet will be infected by a disease with a 95 percent fatality rate.
Dr. Shaw is pitched into a race against time to trace the origin of the pathogen. But with each passing hour, her suspicions grow: this outbreak is no natural catastrophe. Haunted by her own dark secrets, Dr. Shaw will be drawn into a conspiracy of unimaginable scope and towards a revelation that will change the human race forever.
Goodreads score: 4.02 stars out of 5.
The Plague Race: A tale of fear, science, and heroism by Edward Marriott:
Hong Kong at the end of the nineteenth century, and an epidemic has broken out. Two rival scientists: Alexandre Yersin – rigorous, solitary, cerebral – and the suave Kitasaka, unscrupulous, enigmatic, careless run a tense and frightening race in appalling conditions, both desperate to unlock the secret at the heart of this most feared disease.
Spiced with anecdotes, facts and chilling reconstructions, this investigation of the plague in the modern world brings some disturbing facts to light
Goodreads score: 3.7 stars out of 5 and personally recommended by me!
The Plague Charmer by Karen Maitland:
1361. Porlock Weir, Exmoor. Thirteen years after the Great Pestilence, plague strikes England for the second time. Sera, a packhorse man’s wife, remembers the horror all too well and fears for the safety of her children. Only a dark-haired stranger offers help, but at a price that no one will pay.
Fear gives way to hysteria in the village and, when the sickness spreads to her family, Sara finds herself locked away by neighbours she has trusted for years. And, as her husband – and then others – begin to die, the cost no longer seems so unthinkable.
Goodreads score: 3.93 stars out of 5.