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Pandemic: A Novel [Kindle Edition]

Scott Sigler
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (169 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $26.00
Kindle Price: $12.99
You Save: $13.01 (50%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

Scott Sigler’s Infected shocked readers with a visceral, up-close account of physical metamorphosis and one man’s desperate fight for sanity and survival, as “Scary” Perry Dawsey suffered the impact of an alien pathogen’s early attempts at mass extinction. In the sequel Contagious, Sigler pulled back the camera and let the reader experience the frantic national response to this growing cataclysm.
     And now in Pandemic, the entire human race balances on the razor’s edge of annihilation, beset by an enemy that turns our own bodies against us, that changes normal people into psychopaths or transforms them into nightmares.

To some, Doctor Margaret Montoya is a hero—a brilliant scientist who saved the human race from an alien intelligence determined to exterminate all of humanity. To others, she’s a monster—a mass murderer single-handedly responsible for the worst atrocity ever to take place on American soil. 
     All Margaret knows is that she’s broken. The blood of a million deaths is on her hands. Guilt and nightmares have turned her into a shut-in, too mired in self-hatred even to salvage her marriage, let alone be the warrior she once was.
     But she is about to be called into action again. Because before the murderous intelligence was destroyed, it launched one last payload — a soda can–sized container filled with deadly microorganisms that make humans feed upon their own kind. 
     That harmless-looking container has languished a thousand feet below the surface of Lake Michigan, undisturbed and impotent . . . until now.
     Part Cthulhu epic, part zombie apocalypse and part blockbuster alien-invasion tale, Pandemic completes the Infected trilogy and sets a new high-water mark in the world of horror fiction.

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Q&A with Scott Sigler (Interviewed by Carl Zimmer)

Carl Zimmer is a columnist at the New York Times, where his column “Matter” appears each Thursday. He has written twelve books, and also writes regularly about science for magazines including National Geographic and Wired.

Q. You've based a whole series of books on the horror of these parasitic alien creatures. Why do you think people are so scared of them? It can't be just a fear of death, right? Imagine, Cardiac: A Horror Novel of Heart Disease. I mean, it just doesn't have the same snap as Infected. So what's going on?

A. As humans, we have a universal fear of something getting inside of us, working against us, hurting us or even killing us. We also dread losing control, being manipulated to do things we don’t want to do, losing our free will— the amorphous fear of Big Brother, for example, or the ongoing fascination with regular folk turned into brain-hungry zombie hordes. A parasite that can turn you into a paranoid killer while at the same time eating you from within combines those terrors.

My books resonate because the parasitic “bad guy” isn’t something you can run away from, or lock your doors against. It gets inside you, becomes a part of you, and destroys who you are. Once you’re infected, there is no escape.

Q. There is sometimes nothing quite as boring as a scientific paper. And that's a good thing. Science needs to focus on the details, relentlessly, in order to move towards the truth. So how do you draw from science to create fiction that people want to keep reading?

A. As important as science is to my books, I’m always very aware that the driving force needs to be the story, not the idea. That’s always been the essence of science fiction, using the experiences of characters we can connect with to convey a larger concept. In transmuting that approach into horror fiction, hard science provides realism and validity that makes the scary stuff even scarier: everything seems more frightening because the reader feels that this could really happen. Vampires are scary as hell, but there is a safety in that fear because we know (most of us do, anyway), that they don’t exist. With science-based horror, the reader watches pieces being assembled, knows those pieces are real, and that makes for a different experience.

Q. You are writing science-based horror in an age of — shall we say — pseudoscience horror. Why do you stay away from the paranormal?

A. Paranormal horror is great and, as a reader, I enjoy it. As a writer, however, I naturally gravitate to telling stories that past the “sniff test” of something that could really happen, and could happen right now.

If you have a super-powered Big Bad that can change reality with the wave of an ancient hand, then anything is possible and the rule-set can change at the author’s whim. I can read those stories; I’m just not adept at writing them. I’m more comfortable telling a tale where the world around us is the world around us, not camouflage for a hidden realm where physics don’t apply.

In that way, I think of myself more as a thriller author using horrific elements than a “horror author,” which usually implies use of the supernatural and/or undead that have a scientific explanation. When my stories do drop a fantastic, unexpected element, I want my readers to be able to go back and think, “This is perfectly inline with the rest of the story; I could have seen this coming but I missed it.”

Q. You've mentioned in the past that my nonfiction book Parasite Rex influenced you. Just out of personal curiosity, what happened?

A. Parasite Rex was part of my original research for the first book in this series, Infected, and two facts in it blew me away. The first was that parasites make up two-thirds of the species on this planet, meaning that parasitism is the dominant survival strategy. Parasites win.

The second thing was that parasites can, quite literally, mind-control their hosts and destroy the host’s survival instinct. Talk about true horror: parasites can force hosts to commit suicide, either by leaving their natural environment, or by making them attracted to their predators.

When I started applying what I learned in Parasite Rex to human hosts, it created disturbing, deeply unsettling possibilities — as anyone who has read Infected can tell you.

Q. To complete the circle from nonfiction to fiction and back, do you find your novels can entice people to find out more about science? Are you a gateway drug for knowledge?

A. My first responsibility is to tell a well-structured story that doesn’t “cheat” by making up new rules when it is convenient for the author. “C” is believable and possible because “B” was already done, and “B” seems real because we all learned about “A” in high school. When I do it right, the story feels complete and has a logical — if completely over the top — ending. That’s what makes my readers happy.

I feel my second responsibility, however, is to show just how damn cool science is. Many of my readers Google the seemingly far-out discoveries and technologies they find in my stories, and are shocked to learn these things actually exist. From there, I hope in my heart of hearts that they keep searching and keep learning.

Review

Praise for Pandemic:

"With its razor-sharp prose and attention to detail, combined with skin-crawling body horror and apocalyptic threat, Pandemic reads like the love child of Michael Crichton and David Cronenberg. I haven't been this creeped out by a book in a long time."--James S.A. Corey, New York Times bestselling author of Leviathan Wakes

"This one's a killer. In Pandemic, our chance against the apocalypse hangs by a slender thread of hope. Sigler brings serious game with a book that rocks the action while delving deep into character. Highly recommended."--Jonathan Maberry, New York Times bestselling author of Extinction Machine

"Page-turning, spellinding, horrifying, and thrilling...a pulse-pounding alien disease outbreak-slash-invasion story."--Ramen Naam, author of Nexus

Praise for Scott Sigler's Infected and Contagious:

"Fraught with tension...Invasion of the Body Snatchers meets The Hot Zone." --Rocky Mountain News

"[An] amped up read...full of pressure-cooker mind games." --Entertainment Weekly

“A pulpy masterpiece of action, terror, and suspense.”—James Rollins

"Rip-snorting, gun-blasting, autopsy-performing action, complete with explosions and forensic science." --Sacramento News & Review

"Nothing short of incredible...continues the work that Robert A. Heinlein left undone, but it's also a horror novel, a military thriller, a mystery...you've never read anything like it." -Bookreporter.com

"Gutsy, ambitious, and completely seductive...a definite must-read." –Booklist

“A marvel of gonzo, in-your-face, up-to-the-minute terror.”—Lincoln Child

Product Details

  • File Size: 1830 KB
  • Print Length: 594 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0307408973
  • Publisher: Crown (January 21, 2014)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00E736HIU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #19,307 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Final installment in gut wrenching trilogy December 23, 2013
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I first read Sigler's Infected back in 2008. I just reread it to reacquaint myself with the characters and storyline, although a fair amount had stuck in my little brain even five years later.

I then read Contagious - the middle book in the trilogy - and enjoyed every minute of racing through it.

That brings me to "Pandemic," this final awe-inspiring conclusion to the trilogy. Sigler has a great talent in producing larger-than-life yet believable characters that his readers identify with.

You don't have to read the first two books in this series to enjoy "Pandemic" but you REALLY don't want to miss them (they're that good).

"Pandemic" gives the reader a too-real look at a worldwide pandemic. Even though the causes behind the disaster are sci fi, the science behind the pandemic itself and its spread worldwide is all too believable and terrifying.

Short chapters and action-loaded pages make the 580+ pages of this thriller zoom by.

Again, though, as with the prior two books, be warned that this book isn't for those with weak stomachs. Sigler has a knack for describing stomach roiling scenes.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Warning: Extreme Gushing Ahead! November 26, 2013
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I don't do many gushing reviews but, without shame, this is going to be one of them!

In Pandemic, Sigler returns us to the world of Infected and Contagious. A single canister of the deadly pathogen has been resting on the bottom of Lake Michigan and the U.S. Government wants it. However, China also wants it as the perfect weapon to ensure world domination - the ability to turn a country's citizens against each other. But this time, the pathogen has mutated into something even more dangerous and more vicious. Its only goal? The Mass Extinction of the human race!

*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*

I loved Infection and Contagious and was pathetically giddy to be offered a chance to read this book. Keep in mind, however, that you don't need to read the first two in the series in order to thoroughly enjoy this. There's a small recap in the beginning of the book to bring you up to speed and then it's a race to save humanity from extinction.

The book is bloody, violent, and action packed. This is a gruesome apocalypse where both the heroes and the infected will do anything to survive - and I mean anything. The book manages to be horrifying and heartbreaking all at once, with a few moments of pure humor.

Along with a few old favorites, Sigler brings some new characters into the fray and they are fantastic. Tim and Steve were among my favorites and they helped breathe new life into the series.

How much did I enjoy this? At 592 pages, I still raced through the book, finishing it in one weekend (a weekend full of five-year-olds, house cleaning, and birthday parties).

A blow you away five star epic read that I will definitely revisit in the future!
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Scott Sigler's Pandemic Takes Series To Another Level! December 11, 2013
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This is the first time that I have ever read a third book in a series that is heads and shoulders above the rest. I loved Pandemic! With the first in the series Infected coming in behind at second and Contagious a distant third in preference.

If you've read both Infected and Contagious, you are aware that pivotal characters were lost in both these books, however Scott Sigler brings in replacements that are well rounded and believable. I quickly became invested in all the characters and Pandemic became one of those great books that I didn't want to put down and also that I never wanted to end.

Pandemic held together for me in both the science and military components (no eye rolls or suspension of belief needed to enjoy), really, really, really liked Pandemic. Am looking forward to Sigler's next offering.

Only negative that I can nitpick-- Feely's an amazing character addition to the series; in Pandemic when he's not around people I can see him 'working researching' while in reality spending his most of his time on reddit; I just hope that he's not made into a caricature. Came close when he couldn't stop hitting on/see beyond her breasts-> scientist Montoya, but Sigler pulled back and allowed Tim Feeley to be great. Hope to see a lot more of Feely in next installment.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Happy to say that it's AWESOME! December 5, 2013
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I was really lucky to get an early copy of Pandemic. I really do enjoy Scott Sigler's writing and was glad to have a chance to read Pandemic at all.

Let me start off by saying that the writing is solid. The story is solid and it will definitely keep you reading all the way through. I don't often find myself really pulled into a story but by one third of the way through this, I couldn't put it down.

The story of Pandemic picks up after the events of Infected and Contagious. If you haven't read either novel, that's ok because it is not that hard to pick up Pandemic. However, you'll be missing out on a lot of the details about the aliens and how the situation got as dire as it is. Initially, the story focuses on Dr. Montoya, the hero from the prior novels who is always at the forefront of the invasion. She's managed to save the day, time and time again, but she's haunted by her decisions and ghosts from the past. Unfortunately for her, there is a continuing search for the missing alien spacecraft from the last novel. And of course, they're going to find it. And of course, it's not going to be good.

I hate to give much away about this other than, you can almost see ebb and flow of the chapters. Good event occurs but oh, no, something bad occurs. The novel has a push and pull with the heroes almost getting ahead of the virus and then falling behind. The effect is that you're with the characters in a race towards the finish.

The end does the series justice and wraps things up nicely. I was sad to get to the end but satisfied with the conclusion. Worth the read and the time. Can't wait for his next GFL novel!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars I wanted to love this....
*WARNING SPOILERS BELOW*

Gosh, it saddens me a bit to write this review bc I am a HUGE Scott Sigler fan. Read more
Published 1 day ago by Alexandra G.
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome way to end the trilogy!
I can't say much without spoiling one or all of the books. If you have read Infected and Contagious, you know what I mean. So buy this and enjoy. Read more
Published 2 days ago by Jason Russell
4.0 out of 5 stars Worthy Conclusion to the Trilogy
This novel is the concluding chapter to the author’s trilogy which began with Infected and followed up with Contagious. Read more
Published 3 days ago by Steven M. Anthony
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent close to the trilogy
I am a pretty big fan of Scott Sigler, but this is his first novel that I actually read; everything else I listened to on his podcasts. Read more
Published 3 days ago by Katie
5.0 out of 5 stars Talk About a Strong Finish
After Infected and Contagious, I wasn't sure how Scott Sigler was going to up the stakes in Pandemic without having it just be about life on a barren wasteland that was once Earth. Read more
Published 3 days ago by Ken Pierce
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent
I truly enjoyed the end of this series. It was a fun run and I am looking forward to reading more from Scott Sigler.
Published 4 days ago by Shannon F.
4.0 out of 5 stars Finally
I don't think it was as good as the first two in the series but it did wrap things up and it was entertaining.
Published 4 days ago by foothillruss
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast paced thriller
If you like scott sigler you will love the conclusion to this trilogy. it definitely township the loose ends. A very fitting end to a great series.
Published 5 days ago by Benjamin Morgan
5.0 out of 5 stars How could I not give this book five stars?
Full Disclosure: I am a dyed-in-the-wool Junkie. I look forward to Sundays when Scott uploads his latest podcast where he performs his works and talks to his Junkies. Read more
Published 5 days ago by Evan Hammerman
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, but not his best
I enjoyed this book, but I felt that there were a few too many happy coincidences for me to have to overcome. Read more
Published 6 days ago by mr brendan john lee
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More About the Author

New York Times best-selling novelist Scott Sigler is author of the INFECTED trilogy (INFECTED, CONTAGIOUS and PANDEMIC), ANCESTOR and NOCTURNAL, hardcover hardcover thrillers from Crown Publishing; and the co-founder of Empty Set Entertainment, which publishes his Galactic Football League series (THE ROOKIE, THE STARTER, THE ALL-PRO and THE MVP).

Before he was published, Scott built a large online following by giving away his self-recorded audiobooks as free, serialized podcasts. His loyal fans, who named themselves "Junkies," have downloaded over eight million individual episodes of his stories and interact daily with Scott and each other in the social media space.

Scott reinvented book publishing when he released EARTHCORE as the world's first "podcast-only" novel. Released in twenty weekly episodes, EARTHCORE harkened back to the days of serialized radio fiction. His innovative use of technology puts him at the forefront of modern-day publishing and has garnered brand-name exposure among hundreds of thousands of fiction fans and technology buffs.

He's been covered in Time Magazine, the Washington Post, the New York Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, Entertainment Weekly, Publisher's Weekly, The Huffington Post, Business Week and Fangoria. He still records his own audiobooks and gives away every story - for free - to his Junkies at www.ScottSigler.com.

A Michigan native, Scott lives in San Francisco but still roots for his beloved Detroit Lions.

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