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The End of October: A novel par Lawrence…
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The End of October: A novel (original 2020; édition 2020)

par Lawrence Wright (Auteur)

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4663241,164 (3.62)32
"In this propulsive medical thriller--from the Pulitzer Prize winner and best-selling author--Dr. Henry Parsons, an unlikely but appealing hero, races to find the origins and cure of a mysterious new killer virus as it brings the world to its knees. At an internment camp in Indonesia, within one week, forty-seven people are pronounced dead with acute hemorrhagic fever. When the microbiologist and epidemiologist Henry Parsons travels there on behalf of the World Health Organization to investigate, what he finds will soon have staggering repercussions across the globe: an infected man is on his way to join the millions of worshippers in the annual Hajj to Mecca. Now, Henry joins forces with a Saudi doctor and prince in an attempt to quarantine the entire host of pilgrims in the holy city. Matilda Nachinsky, deputy director of U. S. Homeland Security, scrambles to mount a response to what may be an act of biowarfare already-fraying global relations begin to snap, one by one, in the face of a pandemic. Henry's wife Jill and their children face diminishing odds of survival in Atlanta and the disease slashes across the United States, dismantling institutions--scientific, religious, governmental--and decimating the population. As packed with suspense as it is with the riveting history of viral diseases, Lawrence Wright has given us a full-tilt, electrifying, one-of-a-kind thriller"--… (plus d'informations)
Membre:brendajanefrank
Titre:The End of October: A novel
Auteurs:Lawrence Wright (Auteur)
Info:Knopf (2020), 400 pages
Collections:Votre bibliothèque
Évaluation:***1/2
Mots-clés:pandemic, science, medical mystery, audio book

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The End of October par Lawrence Wright (2020)

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» Voir aussi les 32 mentions

Affichage de 1-5 de 32 (suivant | tout afficher)
Honestly not sure what I expected when I started this, but I thought, hey, I read one "sort of" pandemic novel in Chuck Wendig's [b:Wanderers|32603079|Wanderers|Chuck Wendig|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1542215231l/32603079._SY75_.jpg|53184096], but this one looked a little more grounded, so I thought I'd give it a shot.

I honestly didn't even read the blurb. Instead, I became aware of this about week prior to release through an article where the author was basically ruefully scratching his head that he'd managed to write about a topic that couldn't be more...well...topical.

And it's obvious how much research went into this novel, which I appreciated, because it both made it that much more real, but also that much more terrifying, from a pandemic response angle. I liked the characters a lot, and Wright spent a lot of time allowing the reader to get to know and care for them, which I appreciated as well.

I was a touch surprised—though, on reflection, I shouldn't have been—at the somewhat Tom Clancy-ish turn the book took toward the back half.

So, if I were to sum it up, I see this as a novel that Clancy would write if he were told to rewrite Stephen King's [b:The Stand|149267|The Stand|Stephen King|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1213131305l/149267._SX50_.jpg|1742269].

Really good, quite terrifying. ( )
  TobinElliott | Sep 3, 2021 |
Reading Lawrence Wright's book "The End of October" amazed me, given that it was written prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, yet seemed to so closely predict what is actually occurring today. He writes about a flu-like disease, possibly originating via avian means or perhaps created in a Chinese or Russian lab. Regardless of its origin, the first known outbreak of the disease was discovered in Indonesia (close enough to China to satisfy me). Of course, it then spread rapidly, overwhelming health-care systems everywhere, forcing citizens to self-isolate, borders to close, businesses to close, and the global economy tanked.

So many things in the book predicted what actually occurred mere months after being published. Schools close, airlines are going bankrupt, and ventilators are in short supply. People need to wear masks and gloves when they go out, and there's no inoculation available. The U.S. President (who has a tanning bed in the White House) appoints a Task Force to deal with the pandemic, placing the Vice President in charge. The Vice President is worried about the collapse of the stock market more than the spread of the disease, and recommends getting business re-opened ASAP, and Fox News echos the Administrations sentiments. Of course, when businesses open earlier than health experts recommended, the death toll rises.

As mentioned, the book came out in April, just as the COVID-19 pandemic started to spread around the world. It's eerily prescient, especially given that Wright started writing the book a couple of years earlier before anyone heard of COVID-19. Spooky how he created a novel like this which seemed to play out in real time just as it was being published. Wright explained later that he didn't simply invent the idea of a pandemic like this spreading around the world - he simply reviewed studies already completed by our Natonal health agencies, which recognized the danger and predicted what might happen in a pandemic. It makes the lack of preparedness for the pandemic all the more serious. As Wright details in his subsequent book "The Plague Years", if the warnings of the medical experts had been heeded and taken seriously, the results of the pandemic might have been much less damaging.
( )
  rsutto22 | Jul 15, 2021 |
So is reading a novel about a pandemic a good idea while you are living through an actual pandemic? I’m still now sure I can answer that question even after reading this fine piece of fiction from noted reporter and non-fiction author Lawrence Wright. In a bit of incredible prescience he had this written and ready to go well before our virus existed, the book came out in March! A quick side note here, if you have not read his book “The Looming Tower” then do yourself a favor and read it. You will learn things. Now back to our regularly scheduled review. I was intrigued by the idea of this novel and I knew that Mr. Wright is a fantastic writer who can explain complex ideas completely and clearly. I was not really disappointed although my rating is weighed down by the way the narrative seemed to sag in the middle and then, somewhat inevitably, go off the rails at the end. In the main though this was a book that managed to be informative (he knows how to do that) while being entertaining. I liked most of the points of view he used but I felt he jumped around a little too much and maybe he could have cut down on the number of them. The technical aspects of the story are compelling and I was amazed at how much his vision of pandemic America rang true. He missed some things of course but the virus in the book is different in important ways from the Coronavirus and no one should expect a novelist to predict everything right. I enjoyed seeing the story unfold but, as I said earlier, felt it got bogged down for a while and the ending just seemed a bit insane for me in a book that stayed so close to reality. But, it is a thriller and most of them have crazy endings, so it is par for the course. There are parts of the book that deal with cyber attacks, conspiracy theories and online fake news, and with real war. It mostly all works. The book apparently started out as a screenplay for Ridley Scott and I imagine it will be a movie or more likely a limited run series in the near future. In the end I would answer my first question with a pretty strong “yes.” Contrasting the chaos in the novel with the reality we are facing made me think that overall we are bucking up pretty well. I’ll take that. ( )
  MarkMad | Jul 14, 2021 |
This is a solid thriller. Wright isn't a natural novelist--there's some clunky dialogue. What he is is a painstaking researcher, and the scenario is far too believable. He gets both the science and the politics right, in careful detail.

I honestly can't recommend reading this at the moment, however. Wright was either the luckiest or unluckiest writer alive to have had this book come out now. ( )
  arosoff | Jul 11, 2021 |
Deeply researched with decent development of a few main characters. Suspenseful. Details such as cytokine storms, R0 and advice to avoid ibuprofen are popping up in real life which is unnerving.
The long long flashbacks include a seriously mystifying bear attack. That didn’t end the way I thought it would considering certain womanly functions.
The actual end of the book, after the long drawn out journey the protagonist (I kept picturing Anthony Fauci in my head) has to take home, was somehow abrupt and not exactly satisfying. I’d still recommend this if you really want to do this right now. I certainly did. ( )
  flemertown | Jul 10, 2021 |
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"In this propulsive medical thriller--from the Pulitzer Prize winner and best-selling author--Dr. Henry Parsons, an unlikely but appealing hero, races to find the origins and cure of a mysterious new killer virus as it brings the world to its knees. At an internment camp in Indonesia, within one week, forty-seven people are pronounced dead with acute hemorrhagic fever. When the microbiologist and epidemiologist Henry Parsons travels there on behalf of the World Health Organization to investigate, what he finds will soon have staggering repercussions across the globe: an infected man is on his way to join the millions of worshippers in the annual Hajj to Mecca. Now, Henry joins forces with a Saudi doctor and prince in an attempt to quarantine the entire host of pilgrims in the holy city. Matilda Nachinsky, deputy director of U. S. Homeland Security, scrambles to mount a response to what may be an act of biowarfare already-fraying global relations begin to snap, one by one, in the face of a pandemic. Henry's wife Jill and their children face diminishing odds of survival in Atlanta and the disease slashes across the United States, dismantling institutions--scientific, religious, governmental--and decimating the population. As packed with suspense as it is with the riveting history of viral diseases, Lawrence Wright has given us a full-tilt, electrifying, one-of-a-kind thriller"--

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