Crisis in the Red Zone
The 2013-2014 Ebola epidemic was the deadliest ever--but the outbreaks continue. Now comes a gripping account of the doctors and scientists fighting to protect us, an urgent wake-up call about the future of emerging viruses--from the #1 bestselling author of The Hot Zone, soon to be a National Geographic original miniseries.This time, Ebola started with a two-year-old child who likely had contact with a wild creature and whose entire family quickly fell ill and died. The ensuing global drama activated health professionals in North America, Europe, and Africa in a desperate race against time to contain the viral wildfire. By the end--as the virus mutated into its deadliest form, and spread farther and faster than ever before--30,000 people would be infected, and the dead would be spread across eight countries on three continents.In this taut and suspenseful medical drama, Richard Preston deeply chronicles the outbreak, in which we saw for the first time the specter of Ebola jumping continents, crossing the Atlantic, and infecting people in America. Rich in characters and conflict--physical, emotional, and ethical--Crisis in the Red Zone is an immersion in one of the great public health calamities of our time.Preston writes of doctors and nurses in the field putting their own lives on the line, of government bureaucrats and NGO administrators moving, often fitfully, to try to contain the outbreak, and of pharmaceutical companies racing to develop drugs to combat the virus. He also explores the charged ethical dilemma over who should and did receive the rare doses of an experimental treatment when they became available at the peak of the disaster. Crisis in the Red Zone makes clear that the outbreak of 2013-2014 is a harbinger of further, more severe outbreaks, and of emerging viruses heretofore unimagined--in any country, on any continent. In our ever more interconnected world, with roads and towns cut deep into the jungles of equatorial Africa, viruses both familiar and undiscovered are being unleashed into more densely populated areas than ever before.The more we discover about the virosphere, the more we realize its deadly potential. Crisis in the Red Zone is an exquisitely timely book, a stark warning of viral outbreaks to come.

Crisis in the Red Zone Details

TitleCrisis in the Red Zone
Author
ReleaseJul 23rd, 2019
PublisherRandom House
ISBN-139780812998832
Rating
GenreScience, Nonfiction, Health, Medical, Cultural, Africa

Crisis in the Red Zone Review

  • Donna Backshall
    January 1, 1970
    Wow, wow, just wow. A good thriller is that much scarier when IT'S FREAKING REAL.Review to come, but first I need to bathe, to scrub my skin raw and try to shake the feeling that everything and everyone I've come in contact with is teeming with the ebola virus. Seriously, I'm terrified. We all should be.------------------------------------Okay, review time!Richard Preston can write a true thriller like no one else I've read. He gets into the grit of recent events as they unfold and puts us RIGHT Wow, wow, just wow. A good thriller is that much scarier when IT'S FREAKING REAL.Review to come, but first I need to bathe, to scrub my skin raw and try to shake the feeling that everything and everyone I've come in contact with is teeming with the ebola virus. Seriously, I'm terrified. We all should be.------------------------------------Okay, review time!Richard Preston can write a true thriller like no one else I've read. He gets into the grit of recent events as they unfold and puts us RIGHT THERE. This is why I've read practically everything he's ever written, and have yet to be disappointed.We all know the Ebola hemorrhagic fever virus is terrifying, and we have heard about recent outbreaks. But we didn't know what was actually happening, and we have been sheltered by the media from the news that there are still outbreaks in Africa that could threaten the globe. Do we know to be prepared to hole up, if an outbreak hit our cities and towns? Do we understand the concept of reverse quarantine and how it has helped prevent the spread across African countries? There is so much to learn, and Crisis in the Red Zone: The Story of the Deadliest Ebola Outbreak in History, and of the Outbreaks to Come offers current and vital information to add on top of The Hot Zone: The Terrifying True Story of the Origins of the Ebola Virus, The Demon in the Freezer, and the others.I was fascinated to find out that, like climate change deniers, there are Ebola deniers. One of the biggest reasons Ebola was spreading so quickly five years ago is that there were many who didn't believe this is a real disease, spread by a wet virus. They thought it was some kind of conspiracy created by the white men coming in and putting up hospitals, or it was a demon or gods getting them. These Ebola deniers wouldn't take those infected to the hospitals, and were even stealing infected people from hospitals and taking them home. Equally fascinating was the ritual of rinsing (Ebola-covered) family members' bodies after death, then giving honored family members the gift of rinsing with that same water, so they may bathe in the loved one's essence. Yes, literally taking all the active Ebola particles that clung to the deceased's body, rinsing them into a basin and pouring them onto oneself. I am still dumbstruck that these kinds of burial practices haven't destroyed civilizations, given all the plagues and viruses that have attacked humanity over millenia. Or maybe it has?"Behavior changes. This is how all outbreaks end.""Ebola outbreaks end when people decide they're going to end."The changes that took place to slow this current spread of Ebola were intriguing. It sounds so simple -- isolate, wash with bleach, be careful -- but considering the "it's fake news" beliefs of the affected populations, it seems unlikely modern medicine could make an impact, though it's a relief to hear something finally changed."The Ebola war wasn't won with modern medicine. It was a medieval war, and it went down as a brutal engagement between ordinary people and a life form that was trying to use the human body as a means of survival through deep time. In order to win this war against an inhuman enemy, people had to make themselves inhuman. They had to suppress their deepest feelings and instincts, tear down the bonds of love and feeling, isolate themselves from or isolate those they loved the most. Human beings had to become like monsters, in order to save their human selves."My heart goes out to each and every healthcare worker who, against horrifying odds, stepped up and put their lives on the line to battle this disease. Many lost their lives in the fight, and it's unfortunate they are not mourned more publicly. We have not seen the last of Ebola, for sure, but we can hope for continuing vaccine research and public acknowledgement of the dangers. There will always be a new virus, a new threat, but what we can realistically hope for within our lifetimes is an eradication of the hideous death we expect from Ebola.
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  • Toya
    January 1, 1970
    I read The Hot Zone over a decade ago, and I instantly fell in love with Richard Preston’s writing. As someone who has always loved science, especially virology, Ebola was always the virus that I found to be the most fascinating and also most terrifying. It’s one of the simplest viruses (as contagious as the common cold), it has the capacity to cross-species jump and evolve, and it completely decimates the human immune system in just 7-10 days (something that takes YEARS for HIV to do). That bei I read The Hot Zone over a decade ago, and I instantly fell in love with Richard Preston’s writing. As someone who has always loved science, especially virology, Ebola was always the virus that I found to be the most fascinating and also most terrifying. It’s one of the simplest viruses (as contagious as the common cold), it has the capacity to cross-species jump and evolve, and it completely decimates the human immune system in just 7-10 days (something that takes YEARS for HIV to do). That being said, I have always dreamt of becoming an epidemiologist for the CDC and working in the Hazmat suits on Biosafety Level 4. When I found out that he was doing a follow up to my beloved The Hot Zone, I couldn’t request the book fast enough!Richard Preston does an incredible job of immersing you into the gruesome reality of Ebola outbreaks. He doesn’t spare you the gorey details. When The Hot Zone was first released in 1994, the seriousness of the Ebola virus did not really register for many Americans since it was a virus that was mostly confined to Africa, and there wasn’t widespread media coverage in the 1970s to really highlight the grim reality. The recent outbreak in 2014, brought Ebola into international spotlight, and The Crisis in the Red Zone provides the details that the media outlets did not have access to.Preston is able to humanize Ebola. He is able to take the medical and scientific jargon surrounding viruses as a whole and make them digestible to all audiences. He recounts stories of medical workers who attempted to save patients and their horrifying experiences in the Ebola wards. (If medical procedures and bodily fluids that are described in painstaking detail make you queasy, this will most definitely not be for you.) The story alternates between the original 1976 outbreak to the 2014 outbreak to answer what has been learned about Ebola and its evolution during that time period.Overall, this was another fantastic piece by Richard Preston that gives even more insight into this virus as well as provides hope for a future where we are ultimately able to eradicate this virus once and for all.Thank you to Random House and NetGalley for providing an eARC. This did not influence my review. All opinions are my own.4.5/5 stars, rounded up!
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  • Elizabeth
    January 1, 1970
    Crisis in the Red Zone: The Story of the Deadliest Ebola Outbreak in History, and of the Outbreaks to ComeAuthor: Richard PrestonPages: 400Genre: Science Pub date: July 23,2019The 2103-2014 was the deadliest ever--but the outbreaks continue. Now comes a gripping account of the doctors and scientists fighting to protect us, an urgent wake-up call about the future of emerging viruses--from the #1 bestselling author of The Hot Zone, soon to be a National Geographic original miniseries.This time, Eb Crisis in the Red Zone: The Story of the Deadliest Ebola Outbreak in History, and of the Outbreaks to ComeAuthor: Richard PrestonPages: 400Genre: Science Pub date: July 23,2019The 2103-2014 was the deadliest ever--but the outbreaks continue. Now comes a gripping account of the doctors and scientists fighting to protect us, an urgent wake-up call about the future of emerging viruses--from the #1 bestselling author of The Hot Zone, soon to be a National Geographic original miniseries.This time, Ebola started with a two-year-old child who likely had contact with a wild creature and whose entire family quickly fell ill and died. The ensuing global drama activated health professionals in North America, Europe, and Africa in a desperate race against time to contain the viral wildfire. By the end--as the virus mutated into its deadliest form, and spread farther and faster than ever before--30,000 people would be infected, and the dead would be spread across eight countries on three continents.In this taut and suspenseful medical drama, Richard Preston deeply chronicles the outbreak, in which we saw for the first time the specter of Ebola jumping continents, crossing the Atlantic, and infecting people in America. Rich in characters and conflict--physical, emotional, and ethical--Crisis in the Red Zoneis an immersion in one of the great public health calamities of our time.Preston writes of doctors and nurses in the field putting their own lives on the line, of government bureaucrats and NGO administrators moving, often fitfully, to try to contain the outbreak, and of pharmaceutical companies racing to develop drugs to combat the virus. He also explores the charged ethical dilemma over who should and did receive the rare doses of an experimental treatment when they became available at the peak of the disaster.Crisis in the Red Zone makes clear that the outbreak of 2013-2014 is a harbinger of further, more severe outbreaks, and of emerging viruses heretofore unimagined--in any country, on any continent. In our ever more interconnected world, with roads and towns cut deep into the jungles of equatorial Africa, viruses both familiar and undiscovered are being unleashed into more densely populated areas than ever before.The more we discover about the virosphere, the more we realize its deadly potential. Crisis in the Red Zone is an exquisitely timely book, a stark warning of viral outbreaks to come. My thoughtsRating: 5Would I recommended it? yes Will I read anything else by this author? yesThis is the first time I've ever read anything about the Ebola virus and I'm glad that I decide to pick this up, First off the author brings to live and gives an in dept look of the Ebola virus and how it affects the body and how its passed from one person to the next , he goes also in dept of how the doctors and nurses puts their very live at risk to help fight this virus and the steps they and they government as well as the NGO take as well, he brings to life not only the virus but the people who fight and died from it , as well as how the families of the deceased and how the villagers treated their lost ones and goes into explaining how the virus was past though out the families as well as the villagers. He also tells you about the six different types of Ebola .Yes you read right there are six different types .And those 6 known species of Ebola is : Zaire Ebola, Sudan Ebola, Reston Ebola, Tai Forest Ebola, Bundibugyo Ebola and Bombali Ebola, their know as the six Ebola sisters,and that Out of the 6 ,the most lethal is the Zaire or is the homicidal elder sister. not only is it the most deadly of the five Ebolas but it is also the most deadly of all known filoviruses, that includes the Ebolas. It's the Lord of the strains.After reading this book I can understand a little bit better why we need to study these types of virus and how to fight them , but it also scare to think what would happening if they ever got lose of here , or someone using them as a weapon but over all its still a good book to read with that said I want to thank Netgalley for letting me read and review it .
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  • S.L. Berry
    January 1, 1970
    What would you do if a loved one came down with Ebola? Do you remember when if you went to a doctor's office they asked if you had traveled outside the U.S. within a certain time period and where?That is what Richard Preston's forthcoming book, Crisis in the Red Zone is about. It is the account of the 2014 Ebola outbreak in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, and other countries in West Africa that started with one boy and then traveling through the Makong Triangle and spreading outwards until it rea What would you do if a loved one came down with Ebola? Do you remember when if you went to a doctor's office they asked if you had traveled outside the U.S. within a certain time period and where?That is what Richard Preston's forthcoming book, Crisis in the Red Zone is about. It is the account of the 2014 Ebola outbreak in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Liberia, and other countries in West Africa that started with one boy and then traveling through the Makong Triangle and spreading outwards until it reached Dallas, Texas and New York. Ebola killed thousands as it spread like wildfire until finally villagers began taking the fight to Ebola through implementing the Ancient Rule -- understanding that Ebola is not a white man's myth but a deadly wet virus that is spread through contact with bodily fluids, recognizing the symptoms of Ebola, isolating of and removal from contact with those infected with Ebola, and destruction through fire or protected burial of the deceased and everything that the deceased may have come in contact with. It is the story of giving (or protecting) life through temporarily changing practices, habits, and deeply ingrained customs and a way of life so that those who are not already infected with Ebola do not break with it and succumb.Crisis in the Red Zone is also the story of the intersection of modern medicine and ways with ancient tribal medicine, folk healing, and culture and the clash between the two as seen in the struggle of Doctors of Without Borders in their "moon suits" to locate and then isolate and treat those infected with Ebola. To be clear, there were other similar conflicts elsewhere that rose to the level of near war between villagers and those who fought Ebola.Preston's account also delves into the conflict that developed between the World Health Organization, Doctors with Borders, and governmental agencies, in Africa and outward including the U.S. and how this clash led to the death of the doctor of the of the Kenema Government Hospital's Ebola ward, Humarr Khan. It is the story of how adherence to inflexible practices and procedures can kill through ignorance of and the overriding local traditions that in turn creates conflict with local populations who have had limited contact with outsiders. This conflict and misunderstanding then creates myths and superstition in the minds of the villagers that eventually leads into war between the villagers and outsiders.Crisis in the Red Zone also relates the superhuman efforts of Doctors Without Borders, World Health Organization doctors, outside experts and local medical personnel to struggle beyond the point of collapse and utter chaos to combat Ebola in situations that were war-like inside the treating areas.Preston also details the evolution of Ebola vaccines and treatments, the Level 4 containment and care that is required to stop an outbreak through in essence creating a fire break in the path of the disease and the history of Ebola including the 1976 outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the lessons learned there which became known as the Ancient Rule and was ultimately implemented by the villagers and medical personnel in the 2014 outbreak.This reader learned a lot through Preston's cogent and in-depth writing and analysis that was easy to understand. At times, in the early part through mid-way, the writing had the annoying quality of like talking to a child. It was not enough to distract this reader. Also, at some point, Preston begins to write part of the time in the first person as he starts to relate to readers his investigation and research for the book. The first time a section appears this reader thought it was an error. It is not as later in the narrative, it becomes clear what the author is doing. Other than that, Preston's account is a fascinating, if chilling, account of how linked this world and how societies and worlds can be destroyed by a microscopic invader.Copy provided by the publisher via Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Laura
    January 1, 1970
    I’m exhausted from grimacing as I read this book, but it’s a very important account. Preston has brought to life the dedicated doctors and nurses who were on the front lines of the deadliest Ebola outbreak ever. His book highlights both how much committed people can do in the face of the horrors of a deadly disease and how wholly unprepared our society is for the next outbreak.
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  • Jan
    January 1, 1970
    Worse than Yellow Fever, Typhoid, or Malaria but mimicking both for a time, the scourge of Ebola was first seen in a village in Zambia in 1976. It certainly didn't stop there but went on a killing spree that spread and defied the medical field and investigators. Written in a style that translates Medicalese into a language that anyone can understand and occasionally using very short sentences to emphasize the unthinkable, this is not just a history, but a warning. The scope of Ebola is somewhat Worse than Yellow Fever, Typhoid, or Malaria but mimicking both for a time, the scourge of Ebola was first seen in a village in Zambia in 1976. It certainly didn't stop there but went on a killing spree that spread and defied the medical field and investigators. Written in a style that translates Medicalese into a language that anyone can understand and occasionally using very short sentences to emphasize the unthinkable, this is not just a history, but a warning. The scope of Ebola is somewhat diminished today, but who knows what other virus could mutate into the next horror.I requested and received a free ebook copy from Random House Publishing Group via NetGalley.
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  • Amanda
    January 1, 1970
    Having just recently read Richard Preston's hit book The Hot Zone, I was excited to see that he was releasing a follow up dealing with the recent Ebola outbreak in Africa in 2013-2014. I loved The Hot Zone and had even watched the National Geographic miniseries based upon the book. However, I must say I was deeply disappointed in Preston's newest Ebola story.Crisis in the Red Zone tells the story of the recent spread of Ebola through Africa, particularly in Guinea and Sierra Leone. Starting with Having just recently read Richard Preston's hit book The Hot Zone, I was excited to see that he was releasing a follow up dealing with the recent Ebola outbreak in Africa in 2013-2014. I loved The Hot Zone and had even watched the National Geographic miniseries based upon the book. However, I must say I was deeply disappointed in Preston's newest Ebola story.Crisis in the Red Zone tells the story of the recent spread of Ebola through Africa, particularly in Guinea and Sierra Leone. Starting with the death of a small child, the Ebola virus quickly devastates many small villages and kills hundreds of people. As health officials worldwide become aware of the situation, doctors and scientists are sent in to try and contain the disease before it becomes a global pandemic. Scientists also try to discover the origin of the virus and realize that once it enters humans, the virus spread and mutates at an extraordinary level. Preston delves into the lives of those on the ground in the hot zones, from the doctors and nurses watching as patients suffer horrible deaths, to scientists in labs in the US, searching for answers. Some of these people do not survive the outbreak, and all are changed forever by the horrors they witness in the red zone.One thing I liked about Preston's book The Hot Zone was his ability to make us care about the people in the two main storylines of that book (the doctors in Zaire and the Jaxxs in Maryland). Again, in this book, Preston gets us to care about the people involved in this crisis; however, there are TOO many people to have to keep up with and care about in this book. He follows many characters, flipping back and forth between their stories from one paragraph to the next, and it makes it very difficult to remember who is who and to keep up with a streamlined narrative for each character. I feel this book would have been much clearer had it followed only a few characters that we can easily track through the entire book rather than quickly bouncing from one character to the next to the next. Preston also goes into significant detail about almost every topic in this book. While I appreciate the detailing of the virus and how it is composed, how it works and how it spreads, not everything that is discussed needs an extended explanation. I feel he gets bogged down in the details, repeating himself numerous times about unimportant facts, and forgets to get back to the main idea; I found myself becoming very bored as I read this book. For a story that is so horrifying and real, the way in which it is presented is meandering, slow-paced, and exhausting.This book is a scary read, like Preston's other works, and the fact that this story is a true story makes it all the more terrifying. I appreciate Preston bringing this story to light; I just wish it had been done in a more cohesive and thrilling manner.My thanks to Random House and Netgalley for providing this ARC of Crisis in the Red Zone by Richard Preston.Rating: ⭐⭐
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  • Jo Burl
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you NetGalley for this advanced reader's copy.I believe I've read all of Richard Preston's books, and didn't think he could improve on the Hot Zone, but he has!This is a truly frightening book, and if it were fiction, I would have thought that it came from the mind of Stephen King. It is much scarier because it is true. The monster in this case is the improved (?!) version of Ebola virus, the Makona Ebola. The Hot Zone gave us a "primer" on what Ebola is and does. Now imagine that the viru Thank you NetGalley for this advanced reader's copy.I believe I've read all of Richard Preston's books, and didn't think he could improve on the Hot Zone, but he has!This is a truly frightening book, and if it were fiction, I would have thought that it came from the mind of Stephen King. It is much scarier because it is true. The monster in this case is the improved (?!) version of Ebola virus, the Makona Ebola. The Hot Zone gave us a "primer" on what Ebola is and does. Now imagine that the virus has mutated in just one letter of its genetic code to allow it to be MORE infectious. How do health care givers deal with something even more virulent? How does a community?This book, while explaining the how, also looks at the personal impact to people. We see what life is like for the unfortunate people who have been infected, the families of these people and how social customs help the virus to propagate itself. As Preston said, "The virus, a true monster, followed the bonds of fealty and love that joined the hospital's caregivers to one another and ultimately to every other person on earth". We are given the stories of the ambulance driver who was infected, the many nurses who had direct patient care and the doctors who were also infected. Each story is more heartbreaking than the last, with very few happy endings, one or two of which you may remember from the news. As you read this, you’ll realize who the real superheroes are, more than the Avengers or Superman, they are the people who rushed to give aid to people who so easily could kill them just by an accidental transference of bodily fluids. I yelled at the caregivers more than once.There were issues that I was unaware of at the time, such as the controversy and ramifications of using the untried in humans drug, ZMapp. This part made truly angry. Without spoiling the book I’ll leave that for you to discover and have your own reactions. Days after finishing it, I’m still shocked by this section.I work in a non-clinical position in a hospital and I remember this unfolding in 2014 and discussions of how our hospital would deal with Ebola if it showed up here. At the time, I found it an intriguing, disturbing thought, but considered it outside of the realm of possibility. Now I know how close a call the whole world had with this outbreak.The book is fascinating and hard to put down. It will make you a bit paranoid in public with everyone who coughs or sneezes, or even hiccups!If I could change anything, I would have a map and photos of the main people in the book. I had to constantly google this information.
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  • athenap
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you to the author, publisher, and NetGalley for the ARC of Crisis in the Red Zone. As a health professional and public health grad student concentrating in infectious diseases, I was particularly interested in this book as the subject is right up my alley. Having previously read about and researched the 2013-14 West Africa Ebola outbreak, I thought I knew a lot about what had happened. Turns out I didn't know as much as I thought I did.Preston masterfully delves into the details and charac Thank you to the author, publisher, and NetGalley for the ARC of Crisis in the Red Zone. As a health professional and public health grad student concentrating in infectious diseases, I was particularly interested in this book as the subject is right up my alley. Having previously read about and researched the 2013-14 West Africa Ebola outbreak, I thought I knew a lot about what had happened. Turns out I didn't know as much as I thought I did.Preston masterfully delves into the details and characters of the tragic events of the first appearance of Ebola in Yambuku in 1976, and then in 2013 starting in Guinea. I learned much more about the backstory (e.g. development of ZMapp and other experimental drugs) and people (I discovered I personally know someone mentioned in the book), which proved very satisfying. There were a few typos and a couple of points in the text where I felt the language was overly dramatic, but overall, I think it's difficult NOT to tell a story in this manner when a deadly virus and life-0r-death situations are involved. It was a gripping account and admittedly, I went through a gamut of emotions as I progressed through the book. I felt immense sadness when reading about the sacrifices made by the workers at Kenema hospital, and -- as a nurse -- anger when simple life-saving measures were withheld (details in the book, though I'm not convinced the reasons made by individuals/organizations were justified). I can't imagine the ethical conflicts that some of the characters faced when confronted with issues of deciding who was to receive treatment. It's a fascinating narrative that highlights differences in cultural beliefs and practices, Western and tribal folk medicine, and how the two often clashed. The fact that these events happened only 5 years ago and currently another outbreak rages in the DRC and has spread into Uganda illustrates how utterly real, terrifying, and devastating the threat of disease-causing microbes is. It can't be understated how important it is, as citizens and nations, to stay vigilant and prepared for "war" against lethal viruses and bacteria.
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  • Madison
    January 1, 1970
    I received an uncorrected proof of this book thanks to NetGalley. Crisis in the Red Zone focuses on the deadliest Ebola epidemic (2013-2014) as well as the Ebola outbreak in 1976. The reader is given some history of the Ebola Virus and the ongoing fight to find a cure or vaccine. But, this is so much more than just a book about a virus. Richard Preston really focuses on human nature and the compassion of the people who were fighting this virus and the many who died. This is about the physical, e I received an uncorrected proof of this book thanks to NetGalley. Crisis in the Red Zone focuses on the deadliest Ebola epidemic (2013-2014) as well as the Ebola outbreak in 1976. The reader is given some history of the Ebola Virus and the ongoing fight to find a cure or vaccine. But, this is so much more than just a book about a virus. Richard Preston really focuses on human nature and the compassion of the people who were fighting this virus and the many who died. This is about the physical, emotional and ethical conflicts that were taking place across continents.Due to there being two timelines of Ebola outbreaks, I naturally found myself more interested in one than the other. I worked for a medical company during this epidemic in 2014, so that was the one I found myself far more invested in. I'm more familiar with it and it's one of the biggest reasons I picked this book up. So the numerous sections about the 1976 outbreak I found myself losing interest slightly. They needed to be there and they were written about very well, but it's a lot of information and characters to keep track of and I definitely didn't pay as close attention to those parts. I wish there had been more about the mass panic the media was able to stir up surrounding this crisis. Overall, though, I thought Preston did a great job portraying the difficult decisions that needed to be made in the midst of this devastating and chaotic epidemic where people have very little information. Those human moments are what make this book so well done!Emerging diseases are only going to become more prevalent. With the current Ebola outbreak in Democratic Republic of Congo and WHO announcing this as an international concern, I can’t think of a book more important right now.
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  • Kim
    January 1, 1970
    Just as terrifying as The Hot Zone was in the 90s, but Crisis in the Red Zone is also more emotional. Very sad stories about so much loss that could have been prevented. Not in the least that of Dr. Khan, I nearly broke down crying while reading even though I knew the outcome.This book reads like great fiction but sadly is non-fiction. Please don't forget that while reading. This is real. It is happening right now.Just this week it was reported that a priest was traveling from a small village to Just as terrifying as The Hot Zone was in the 90s, but Crisis in the Red Zone is also more emotional. Very sad stories about so much loss that could have been prevented. Not in the least that of Dr. Khan, I nearly broke down crying while reading even though I knew the outcome.This book reads like great fiction but sadly is non-fiction. Please don't forget that while reading. This is real. It is happening right now.Just this week it was reported that a priest was traveling from a small village to Goma with known symptoms of ebola. When he arrived in Goma he was turned away saying his village of origin was better equipped to deal with ebola. So he was turned away and sent back... and died in transit. This was public transit. So even today people eschew the rules and recommendations given for what to do if you have ebola symptoms and now this priest has gone from a small village to a city with over 1 million inhabitants that has an international airport. Great. This book made me absolutely disgusted wtih MSF/Doctors Without Borders. Terrible what they did to Dr. Khan. Their setups seem to be doing more harm than good, squalid conditions etc. The WHO tried to knock some sense into them and just got bureaucratic nonsense in return. Absolutely ridiculous.If you are reading this prepare to be disgusted, terrified, amazed, and ultimately so angry with the MSF/Doctors Without Borders crew. Why didn't they send more help to Kenema? The doctors and nurses could have been saved. Dr. Khan was a hero that went down with his flock but it could have been prevented. My heart goes out to his family.My copy was provided by NetGalley for review, all opinions are my own.
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  • Marybeth Taranow
    January 1, 1970
    This book is a fascinating look at the Ebola outbreak in 1976 and the reoccurrence in 2013. It's scary to think that it's happening again in the Congo. It's also scary to think that if this were to become a global pandemic we are not even close to ready to combat something like that.The book is divided into four parts. The first part starts in 1976 with the first documented case of Ebola in a young woman who is brought to the hospital in what use to be Zaire and is now the Democratic Republic of This book is a fascinating look at the Ebola outbreak in 1976 and the reoccurrence in 2013. It's scary to think that it's happening again in the Congo. It's also scary to think that if this were to become a global pandemic we are not even close to ready to combat something like that.The book is divided into four parts. The first part starts in 1976 with the first documented case of Ebola in a young woman who is brought to the hospital in what use to be Zaire and is now the Democratic Republic of the Congo. She is in labor and had a high fever, the whites of her eyes were bright red and she was bleeding from the gums. This actually wasn't unusual. it looked like a case of cerebral malaria. the midwives and nursing aids were not wearing gloves or eye coverings. The baby was stillborn and the mother died shortly after. Five days later the attending nurse fell ill and died 10 days later. The people caring for her didn't have any idea that what she had was contagious. Medical workers, priests, families stared dying horribly. The second and third parts go back and forth between 1976 and 2013 when the reoccurrence happened. The first part felt like it was written in a very simple way, where as the rest of the book was written very intelligently. I like the 2nd, 3rd and 4th parts much better. I would highly recommend this book. it's written almost like a good thriller and not like non-fiction. I am actually giving this a 4.5.Thank you to Netgalley for the book in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Kristine Olsen
    January 1, 1970
    Hmmmm.... what to say about this book. Maybe it’s the part of me from my father that I find reading books on outbreaks, epidemics and pandemics so fascinating given he’s a retired veterinarian with a strong background in epidemiology. Or it may simply be that part that lives in us all that finds the macabre of keen interest. Who knows? Having read Preston’s Hot Zone some time ago, I was immediately intrigued by this book, a sort of follow up in some respects. Although I had some idea of how horr Hmmmm.... what to say about this book. Maybe it’s the part of me from my father that I find reading books on outbreaks, epidemics and pandemics so fascinating given he’s a retired veterinarian with a strong background in epidemiology. Or it may simply be that part that lives in us all that finds the macabre of keen interest. Who knows? Having read Preston’s Hot Zone some time ago, I was immediately intrigued by this book, a sort of follow up in some respects. Although I had some idea of how horrific the Ebola epidemic was in 2014, this book certainly brings that into sharp focus with how Preston presents the events during those tragic days. And he certainly did his homework in getting all the facts. One deeply frustrating part for me was how the health community treated Dr. Khan after he broke with Ebola and the subsequent revelation that there was a possible, yet experimental, treatment just yards away from his sick bed. It was decided to not give him the treatment. That same treatment ended up going to a white American doctor instead and contributed to his survival. I’m still trying to figure out how to understand that whole situation. Overall a stunning look at a devastating situation that will be felt for years to come in West Africa. Oh, by the way, Ebola is presently at it again in the Democratic Republic of the Congo as I write this review. Hopefully some of the lessons learned in the West Africa epidemic can help in the current situation.
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  • Shawn
    January 1, 1970
    Robert Preston did it again! He took a true story of disease along with those who fight it and turned it into a compelling narrative. This nonfiction science work starts out with a history of Ebola and those who were first made ill by the outbreak in 2014. He introduces the main players in starting the fight against the epidemic by giving insights into their lives and their motivations. Then, through flashbacks, he brings in the earliest discoveries of Ebola and the beginnings of research into c Robert Preston did it again! He took a true story of disease along with those who fight it and turned it into a compelling narrative. This nonfiction science work starts out with a history of Ebola and those who were first made ill by the outbreak in 2014. He introduces the main players in starting the fight against the epidemic by giving insights into their lives and their motivations. Then, through flashbacks, he brings in the earliest discoveries of Ebola and the beginnings of research into cures and prevention. The book leaves off in mid-2016 with the virus coming to the US and a look at how the country has and has not prepared. The people who you meet in the story age not perfect, they are real. They have histories and different things which motivate them. You will find yourself holding your breath and exclaiming alternately with dismay and with joy as the story progresses. If you enjoyed Hot Zone, Demon in the Freezer, or Preston's fiction work, you will love this book as well. If you are wanting to understand how a crisis develops or how it could be averted, you will love this book. Frankly, if you love a good story and can handle the realization that it is REAL, you will love this book. Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
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  • PJ
    January 1, 1970
    I read “The Hot Zone” by Richard Preston years ago. I am a big fan of medical thrillers. So a nonfiction medical thriller was no-brainer. Plus, seeing the blurb on the back of the book by Stephen King I had to buy it. The quote started out like this:“The first chapter is one of the most horrifying things I’ve ever read in my whole life...and then it gets worse...” Stephen KingThe story told in “The Hot Zone” happened minutes from my house in the same town that my son went to school. Preston desc I read “The Hot Zone” by Richard Preston years ago. I am a big fan of medical thrillers. So a nonfiction medical thriller was no-brainer. Plus, seeing the blurb on the back of the book by Stephen King I had to buy it. The quote started out like this:“The first chapter is one of the most horrifying things I’ve ever read in my whole life...and then it gets worse...” Stephen KingThe story told in “The Hot Zone” happened minutes from my house in the same town that my son went to school. Preston described in his book how the government attempted to cover up this event. He was dead-on. The only thing I ever heard was a DJ say, “There’s something going on at the monkey house.”“Crisis in the Red Zone” (successor to “The Hot Zone”) is about the 2013-2014 Ebola outbreak, the deadliest Ebola outbreak in history, and the outbreak in 1976.There were six known species of Ebola, now there are seven.Richard Preston does a great job detailing where the breakout started and how it expanded.I must admit, after reading about this strain, to wondering if some of these diseases are government engineered and released in Africa.Kudos to Preston for reporting on this story.I will not be stepping foot in Africa after reading his books. They have too many nasty diseases going on over there.
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  • Katia
    January 1, 1970
    Richard Preston’s book The Hot Zone is what made me want to study microbiology and pathogens - it truly changed the course of my life. This novel is a continuation of the Ebola saga, covering the recent outbreaks in Guinea and Sierra Leone. I remember the hysteria that happened when it was confirmed cases had been found on US soil, but I wasn’t aware at the time how truly devastating and large the outbreak had become. I did find parts of this repetitive because it rehashed material previously co Richard Preston’s book The Hot Zone is what made me want to study microbiology and pathogens - it truly changed the course of my life. This novel is a continuation of the Ebola saga, covering the recent outbreaks in Guinea and Sierra Leone. I remember the hysteria that happened when it was confirmed cases had been found on US soil, but I wasn’t aware at the time how truly devastating and large the outbreak had become. I did find parts of this repetitive because it rehashed material previously covered in The Hot Zone, but the subject matter was still fascinating. I was especially outraged by the political machinations between the WHO, CDC, NIH and other organizations fighting over experimental treatments that could have saved lives. There is another Ebola outbreak currently happening in the Democratic Republic of Congo that shows no signs of stopping, and this book truly drives home how dangerously close we are to a global outbreak of mass proportions. It’s a matter of when, not if, in today’s connected world but unfortunately most citizens don’t seem to know or care. Thank you to NetGalley for providing an Advance Reader’s Copy in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Connie
    January 1, 1970
    Years ago I read The Hot Zone, also by Richard Preston. He has a way of crafting nonfiction books that helps the person reading it experience the things that have happened as if they were during the actual events.While the news reports, during the time of the 2014 Ebola outbreaks, gave us a glimmer of how bad things were, Richard takes us to the areas that were so badly hit and through his book, we get to know the people involved. I was especially impressed by how hard the people on the front li Years ago I read The Hot Zone, also by Richard Preston. He has a way of crafting nonfiction books that helps the person reading it experience the things that have happened as if they were during the actual events.While the news reports, during the time of the 2014 Ebola outbreaks, gave us a glimmer of how bad things were, Richard takes us to the areas that were so badly hit and through his book, we get to know the people involved. I was especially impressed by how hard the people on the front lines worked to find and isolate those who had Ebola, so they could stop this from becoming an even bigger problem. Even though family members, who didn’t understand why their loved ones were taken away, at times tried to save their family members from strangers, often caused more problems and tried to fight out those who were only trying to help. This is a very important book. Things like this could happen again, and the information here should be shared. I feel this is worth 5 stars.
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  • Lissa
    January 1, 1970
    Crisis in the Red Zone: the Story of the Deadliest Ebola Outbreak in History, and of the Outbreaks to ComeBy Richard Preston4 starsSo much has happened to the world since the 2014 Ebola outbreak occurred that it is hard to even remember. It killed and affected a great number of people, though, and this book explores the virus, it’s history and the chase for a medicine to stop its spread. This book is fascinating but tragic and at times really difficult to read as the hopelessness of the situatio Crisis in the Red Zone: the Story of the Deadliest Ebola Outbreak in History, and of the Outbreaks to ComeBy Richard Preston4 starsSo much has happened to the world since the 2014 Ebola outbreak occurred that it is hard to even remember. It killed and affected a great number of people, though, and this book explores the virus, it’s history and the chase for a medicine to stop its spread. This book is fascinating but tragic and at times really difficult to read as the hopelessness of the situation progresses. The author does a good job introducing the different people involved and making you really care about what happens to them. I did find that there were too many tangential details and I found myself trying to figure out the necessity of their inclusion without success. I am reading an early copy, though, so there may be further edits. Overall, this is an extremely interesting and important work on level 4 viruses. I received a digital copy of this book through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Jennifer M.
    January 1, 1970
    Growing up and even now, people will sometimes ask, "What's your dream job?" And without any hesitation, my answer is always, "to work at the CDC in Level 4 as an epidemiologist." My whole life, I've been fascinated with diseases, particularly blood-borne ones that are right up there as Level 4. I loved The Hot Zone, and really any literature regarding Ebola. The scare the US had in 2014, in many people's eyes, was a wake up call to the way this virus works.And Crisis in the Red Zone dives deep Growing up and even now, people will sometimes ask, "What's your dream job?" And without any hesitation, my answer is always, "to work at the CDC in Level 4 as an epidemiologist." My whole life, I've been fascinated with diseases, particularly blood-borne ones that are right up there as Level 4. I loved The Hot Zone, and really any literature regarding Ebola. The scare the US had in 2014, in many people's eyes, was a wake up call to the way this virus works.And Crisis in the Red Zone dives deep into what happened. Who was hit, when, where and how. It's a detailed navigation of what went wrong with the new Ebola virus in Africa. I highly recommend this book for anyone who is interested in diseases. Or if you're interested in real life, very dangerous and serious situations. This book almost reads like a true crime novel. I had a hard time putting it down.Pick it up, and you'll know exactly what I mean.Enjoy!
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  • Book Him Danno
    January 1, 1970
    The first book I read by Richard Preston was The Hot Zone which is now a Mini Series. You can't watch the new without hears Ebola. When you realize that deadly Ebola outbreak are mainly found in African nations it doesn't make it any less terrifying.While Richard Preston has an ability to write an amazing story using the news, medical and first hand accounts he does not sugar coat the details in which they have watched people die from Ebola. At times the stories and accounts will turn stomachs k The first book I read by Richard Preston was The Hot Zone which is now a Mini Series. You can't watch the new without hears Ebola. When you realize that deadly Ebola outbreak are mainly found in African nations it doesn't make it any less terrifying.While Richard Preston has an ability to write an amazing story using the news, medical and first hand accounts he does not sugar coat the details in which they have watched people die from Ebola. At times the stories and accounts will turn stomachs knowing how easily this disease could be transmitted across the oceans. Away from the 3rd world nations and right to your own back door. The author gives stats, detailed accounts in hopes readers will open their eyes to the delicate balance we have in the world. This is must read book for those interested in Ebola or infectious diseases.Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher Random House, for the Advance copy of Richard Preston Crisis in the Red Zone.
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  • Jackie
    January 1, 1970
    Crisis in the Red Zone is Richard Preston's thorough documentation of the 2014 Ebola crisis. It reads as the best long form journalism, and is told in four parts alternating between Yambuku Mission (1976, the first Ebola outbreak) and West Africa (2014, the latest). Preston intersperses the human story of Ebola outbreaks with his thorough research regarding the history of the disease. He focuses on the interaction between humans and Ebola and, in the final part of the book, looks forward to what Crisis in the Red Zone is Richard Preston's thorough documentation of the 2014 Ebola crisis. It reads as the best long form journalism, and is told in four parts alternating between Yambuku Mission (1976, the first Ebola outbreak) and West Africa (2014, the latest). Preston intersperses the human story of Ebola outbreaks with his thorough research regarding the history of the disease. He focuses on the interaction between humans and Ebola and, in the final part of the book, looks forward to what may need to be done to prevent and treat Ebola and any other diseases that find humans a perfect host. It is, ultimately, a book about human perseverance, resilience, and hope.I read this book in one sitting, from start to finish. Preston makes a compelling case that the global community needs to work together to prepare now for the next Ebola, whatever it may be and wherever it may occur. I received an ARC of this title via NetGalley for an honest review.
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  • part time librarian
    January 1, 1970
    Knowing this is nonfiction made this even more frightening, I enjoyed this book immensely. Mr. Preston has employed the style of literary nonfiction to make this a very readable book. It has you sitting at the edge of your seat with suspense and action. But it's absolutely terrifying also. There isn't any graphic violence in this , but there are graphic descriptions of sickness, disease and death. We should really pay closer attention, because it is happening now in Africa. I know some people do Knowing this is nonfiction made this even more frightening, I enjoyed this book immensely. Mr. Preston has employed the style of literary nonfiction to make this a very readable book. It has you sitting at the edge of your seat with suspense and action. But it's absolutely terrifying also. There isn't any graphic violence in this , but there are graphic descriptions of sickness, disease and death. We should really pay closer attention, because it is happening now in Africa. I know some people don't read or see the news much so I really advise you to read this book and also his other books. You will learn some truly scary facts. After I read it I pulled up the word Ebola on the internet and this was front page news, The second-deadliest Ebola outbreak in history has now spread to Uganda -- claiming the life of a 5-year-old boy Wednesday after the virus killed nearly 1400 in Democratic Republic of Congo. ... June 12, 2019 |
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  • Steve
    January 1, 1970
    A great story about unsung heroes but the writing falls short in placesI enjoyed this book. I like science books that read like thrillers and this one certainly did. There was just enough science to explain the story and it was all well-explained. The book was hard to put down, but it had one big weakness and that was too much minutiae about the book’s characters. It reached a point where I started skipping text. The same thing happened with “What the Eyes Don't See” by Mona Hanna-Attisha, and i A great story about unsung heroes but the writing falls short in placesI enjoyed this book. I like science books that read like thrillers and this one certainly did. There was just enough science to explain the story and it was all well-explained. The book was hard to put down, but it had one big weakness and that was too much minutiae about the book’s characters. It reached a point where I started skipping text. The same thing happened with “What the Eyes Don't See” by Mona Hanna-Attisha, and it affected my enjoyment of the book. I also found the writing simplistic and at times repetitive. Nonetheless, this is an important book and I recommend it for anyone interested in science or medicine.Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book via Netgalley for review purposes.
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  • Victoria
    January 1, 1970
    Thank to Random House and Netgalley for sharing the ARC of Richard Preston’s upcoming Ebola book. I appreciated hearing the details of the 2014 outbreak that were not covered in detail at the time. I didn’t find this book as compelling as The Hot Zone which, at the time, I could not believe wasn’t fiction. So maybe missing that feeling of total shock made me appreciate the book a tiny bit less. Still fascinating and it was good that there seems to be a bit of hope for finding drugs to treat such Thank to Random House and Netgalley for sharing the ARC of Richard Preston’s upcoming Ebola book. I appreciated hearing the details of the 2014 outbreak that were not covered in detail at the time. I didn’t find this book as compelling as The Hot Zone which, at the time, I could not believe wasn’t fiction. So maybe missing that feeling of total shock made me appreciate the book a tiny bit less. Still fascinating and it was good that there seems to be a bit of hope for finding drugs to treat such a terrible and scary illness. I would recommend this to anyone who likes thrillers, non-fiction, or science. However, a warning: if you have a weak stomach when it comes to medical procedures, blood and gore and bodily fluids, you may want to give this a pass.
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  • Marti
    January 1, 1970
    I couldn’t stop reading this book. Richard Preston has an amazing skill for writing a nonfiction narrative that draws you into the story. It’s like a really good thriller novel, but is scary because it’s real. I remembered some of the players involved in this Ebola epidemic from media coverage at the time, but this book really helped me understand the relationships between all of the different organizations and individuals who were on the front lines of the fight. It is also a warning of how unp I couldn’t stop reading this book. Richard Preston has an amazing skill for writing a nonfiction narrative that draws you into the story. It’s like a really good thriller novel, but is scary because it’s real. I remembered some of the players involved in this Ebola epidemic from media coverage at the time, but this book really helped me understand the relationships between all of the different organizations and individuals who were on the front lines of the fight. It is also a warning of how unprepared we are for a global pandemic of a disease like Ebola. Thanks to NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Chasidy Kaye Jones
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to Netgalley and Random House Publishing Group for the ARC in exchange of an honest review. I think this book is very informative on something that has happened and most definitely will happen again but at times, all throughout the book,there are sentences that seemed like they were written by a first grader. For example, Lucy is sick. Lucy died. Alex cared for Lucy. Alex died. Maybe just me, but I really noticed it. The book is still very interesting and we as a nation are woefully unpre Thanks to Netgalley and Random House Publishing Group for the ARC in exchange of an honest review. I think this book is very informative on something that has happened and most definitely will happen again but at times, all throughout the book,there are sentences that seemed like they were written by a first grader. For example, Lucy is sick. Lucy died. Alex cared for Lucy. Alex died. Maybe just me, but I really noticed it. The book is still very interesting and we as a nation are woefully unprepared for a disease like Ebola to hit us. Maybe even as a whole not just a nation. But I definitely think one will hit us one-day.
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  • Kathleen Gray
    January 1, 1970
    The Hot Zone stuck in my mind for years. Preston has returned to the subject of Ebola to further inform us - and this one has joined the first in the canon of books one should read to understand the public health challenges we will face in the future. By placing this story in the voices of the individuals most affected, Preston brings the issue home. There are a lot of characters this time around (perhaps too any) but then again, this covers a larger outbreak. There are heroes here in the everyd The Hot Zone stuck in my mind for years. Preston has returned to the subject of Ebola to further inform us - and this one has joined the first in the canon of books one should read to understand the public health challenges we will face in the future. By placing this story in the voices of the individuals most affected, Preston brings the issue home. There are a lot of characters this time around (perhaps too any) but then again, this covers a larger outbreak. There are heroes here in the everyday people and that's what makes this special. Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC. An excellent informative read that might make you shudder.
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  • Pam
    January 1, 1970
    Thank you NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read and give an honest review of this book.Having read Preston’s Hot Zone book many years ago, I was eager to delve into his Crisis in the Red Zone about the Ebola crisis. This book appeared to be a well researched history of the discovery of and progression of the emerging virus, Ebola. It follows the lives of health care works that literally were willing to give their lives caring for victims of this hideous disease. It starts out w Thank you NetGalley and the publisher for the opportunity to read and give an honest review of this book.Having read Preston’s Hot Zone book many years ago, I was eager to delve into his Crisis in the Red Zone about the Ebola crisis. This book appeared to be a well researched history of the discovery of and progression of the emerging virus, Ebola. It follows the lives of health care works that literally were willing to give their lives caring for victims of this hideous disease. It starts out with the initial emergence of this scary filovirus in the 1970s. It goes through the time when several Americans were infected and brought home for treatment. The use of experimental treatments were discussed. At this point in time, Ebola is still endemic in parts of Africa and there is no readily available cure or vaccine. After reading this book, I found myself viewing things like food handlers and public washrooms more critically. The book leaves us with the thought that it is not ‘if’ but ‘when’ there will be an emerging virus or bacteria that threatens the entire human race.
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  • Nirmal
    January 1, 1970
    The book starts as a scene from horror movies with blood ..lots of blood. There is blood throughout the book.. which could make you sick. The first part does not say how the disease was contained in 1970s. It only tells story of its outbreak. This is annoying. But this is explained in the 4th part.The part describing morel dellima to administer the new drug in Ebola patient is heart wrenching. It felt like only the previlliged had had chance to get the rare drugs for recovery while most of other The book starts as a scene from horror movies with blood ..lots of blood. There is blood throughout the book.. which could make you sick. The first part does not say how the disease was contained in 1970s. It only tells story of its outbreak. This is annoying. But this is explained in the 4th part.The part describing morel dellima to administer the new drug in Ebola patient is heart wrenching. It felt like only the previlliged had had chance to get the rare drugs for recovery while most of other had to die. In retrospect my conspiracy theory is that Ebola of 2014 was transferred from Canada to Africa to test an actual outbreak. These countries had already developed the antibody and no one died from those countries.
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  • Jen Juenke
    January 1, 1970
    I loved this book. It was like I was right there with the doctors, nurses, and researchers of Ebola. I loved the authors style of writing and his descriptions of the people and places.I was fascinated on how the Ebola virus had mutated from one boy to the three nurses. Also the brief description of the antibodies in the vaccine was brief and simple enough for me, a layperson to understand.This book should be required reading for anyone going into public health or who wants to know more about Lev I loved this book. It was like I was right there with the doctors, nurses, and researchers of Ebola. I loved the authors style of writing and his descriptions of the people and places.I was fascinated on how the Ebola virus had mutated from one boy to the three nurses. Also the brief description of the antibodies in the vaccine was brief and simple enough for me, a layperson to understand.This book should be required reading for anyone going into public health or who wants to know more about Level 4 or HOT viruses.Spoiler alert:I cried like a baby when Dr Khan and Nurse Auntie died.
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