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Patient Zero: A Joe Ledger Novel Paperback – March 3, 2009

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Editorial Reviews

Review

I had a fine old time reading PATIENT ZERO. Jonathan Maberry has found a delightful voice for this adventure of Joe Ledger and his crew: while the action is heated, violent, and furious, the writing remains cool, steady, and low-key, framing all the wildness and exuberance in a calm rationality (given an almost comic edge) that renders it as palatable as your favorite flavor of ice cream. This is a lovely feat, and Maberry has written a memorable book. (Peter Straub)

Patient Zero is high-octane excitement from beginning to end, and the start of a fabulous new series. Joe Ledger and the DMS have my vote as the team to beat when combatting terrorist threats on a grand scale. (David Morrell, New York Times bestselling author of FIRST BLOOD and CREEPERS)

Scary, creepy, and gripping--PATIENT ZERO is 'Night of the Living Dead' meets Michael Crichton. (Joseph Finder, New York Times bestselling author of Power Play)

A fast-paced, creepy thriller that as prickly as a hospital needle and sounds a little too convincing. This guy is good. (Joe R. Lansdale)

Brutal action, insanely intelligent, and so real that the hair on the back of your neck stands up! (L.A. Banks, The Vampire Huntress Legends Series, New York Times Best-selling Author)

About the Author

Jonathan Maberry is the multiple Bram Stoker Award-winning author of The King of Plagues, The Dragon Factory, Ghost Road Blues and Rot & Ruin, among others. He also wrote the novelization of the movie The Wolfman. His work for Marvel Comics includes Captain America, Punisher, Wolverine, DoomWar, Marvel Zombie Return and Black Panther. His Joe Ledger series has been optioned for TV by Sony Pictures. He has been inducted into the International Martial Arts Hall of Fame.
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Product Details

  • Series: Joe Ledger (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 421 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; Original edition (March 3, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312382855
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312382858
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 1.1 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (403 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #511,004 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

JONATHAN MABERRY is a New York Times best-selling and five-time Bram Stoker Award-winning author, anthology editor, comic book writer, magazine feature writer, playwright, content creator and writing teacher/lecturer. He was named one of the Today's Top Ten Horror Writers. His books have been sold to more than two-dozen countries.

He writes in several genres. His young adult fiction includes ROT & RUIN (2011; now in development for film; named in Booklist's Ten Best Horror Novels for Young Adults, an American Library Association Top Pick, a Bram Stoker and Pennsylvania Keystone to Reading winner; winner of several state Teen Book Awards including the Cricket, Nutmeg and MASL; winner of the Cybils Award, the Eva Perry Mock Printz medal, Dead Letter Best Novel Award, and four Melinda Awards); DUST & DECAY (winner of the 2011 Bram Stoker Award; FLESH & BONE (winner of the Bram Stoker Award; 2012; and FIRE & ASH (August 2013). His thrillers include The Joe Ledger Thrillers from St. Martin's Griffin (PATIENT ZERO, 2009, winner of the Black Quill and a Bram Stoker Award finalist for Best Novel; EXTINCTION MACHINE, (2013; now in development for TV by Lonetree Entertainment and Vintage Picture Company); PREDATOR ONE, 2015, and others. His first middle grade novel, THE NIGHTSIDERS BOOK 1: THE ORPHAN ARMY, debuted in 2015 from Simon & Schuster.

His horror novels include The Pine Deep Trilogy from Pinnacle Books (GHOST ROAD BLUES, 2006, winner of the Bram Stoker Award for Best First Novel and named one of the 25 Best Horror Novels of the New Millennium; DEAD MAN'S SONG, 2007; and BAD MOON RISING, 2008), as well as DEAD OF NIGHT, 2011 (named one of the 25 Best Horror Novels of the New Millennium) and its forthcoming sequel, FALL OF NIGHT, 2014. He also wrote the movie novelization, THE WOLFMAN, 2010, winner of the Scribe Award for Best Adaptation; and DEADLANDS: GHOSTWALKERS, an original novel inspired by the million-copy-selling role-playing game. He has also written the foreword to a new annotated edition of DRACULA from Writers Digest Books.

Jonathan is the creator, editor and co-author of V-WARS, a shared-world vampire anthology from IDW, and its sequels, V-WARS: BLOOD AND FIRE, V-WARS: NIGHT TERRORS, V-WARS: SHOCKWAVES, V-WARS: INFERNO. And he writes a best-selling monthly V-WARS comic. A board game version of V-Wars will be released in late 2015; and the series is in development for TV by IDW Media.

He is also the editor of the dark fantasy anthology series, OUT OF TUNE (JournalStone, 2014), a series of X-FILES anthologies launching in 2015, and SCARY OUT THERE, an anthology of horror for teens.

Jonathan was an expert on the History Channel documentary, ZOMBIES: A Living History. He will also be featured in That $#(!'ll Rot Your Brain: How the Monster Kids Transformed Popular Culture, a forthcoming documentary on horror movies directed by Robert Tinnell. And he was participated in the commentary tracks for NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD: REANIMATED. He recently filmed segments for six installments of a forthcoming H2 series on monsters in mythology and pop culture.

His many nonfiction works include VAMPIRE UNIVERSE (Citadel Press, 2006); THE CRYPTOPEDIA (Citadel, 2007 -winner of the Bram Stoker Award for Outstanding Achievement in Nonfiction; co-authored by David F. Kramer); ZOMBIE CSU: The Forensics of the Living Dead (Winner of the Hinzman and Black Quill Awards and finalist for a Stoker Award; 2008); THEY BITE! (2009 co-authored by David F. Kramer); WANTED UNDEAD OR ALIVE (2010; Bram Stoker finalist; co-authored by Janice Gable Bashman); THE VAMPIRE SLAYERS FIELD GUIDE TO THE UNDEAD (2001, written under the pen name of Shane MacDougall); ULTIMATE JUJUTSU (Strider Nolan, 2001); ULTIMATE SPARRING (Strider Nolan, 2000); JUDO AND YOU (Kendall Hunt 1991); and many others.

He writes a variety of projects for various top comic book companies. His work for Marvel Comics included CAPTAIN AMERICA: HAIL HYDRA, BLACK PANTHER: POWER, DOOMWAR, WOLVERINE: FLIES TO A SPIDER, PUNISHER: NAKED KILLS, the NY Times bestselling MARVEL ZOMBIES RETURN; as well as his own franchise within Marvel --MARVEL UNIVERSE vs THE PUNISHER, MARVEL UNIVERSE vs WOLVERINE and MARVEL UNIVERSE vs THE AVENGERS. He wrote the vampire miniseries BAD BLOOD for Dark Horse, which won the Bram Stoker Award for Best Graphic Novel in 2015; V-WARS and ROT & RUIN for IDW based on his bestselling novels. Adaptations of his short stories have appeared in EVIL JESTER COMICS and GRAVE CONDITIONS. All of Jonathan's comic book collections are released as Graphic Novel collections within a month or two of individual comic publication.

Jonathan has published several dozen short stories in a variety of genres: mystery, horror, thriller, science fiction, military fiction, fantasy, western, urban fantasy, humor and others. His collections include JOE LEDGER: THE MISSING FILES, 2011 from Blackstone Audio; HUNGRY TALES (2012) and TALES FROM THE FIRE ZONE (2012) and the forthcoming JOE LEDGER: SPECIAL OPS (2014, JournalStone), DARKNESS ON THE EDGE OF TOWN and STRANGE WORLDS (Blackstone, 2015). His work also appears in the audio anthology LIAR LIAR from The Liars Club (released by Blackstone Audio in 2013).

Jonathan is the co-creator (with Laura Schrock) of ON THE SLAB, an entertainment news show in development by Stage 9 for ABC Disney / Stage 9. He was also a 'blog correspondent' on Sony's zombie-themed web show 'WOKE UP DEAD'; and was a recurring character on Laura Schrock's 'IT'S TODD'S SHOW'.

Jonathan's popular Big Scary Blog (www.jonathanmaberry.com) focused on the publishing industry. Jonathan's interviews include Sandra Brown, Gayle Lynds, Alafair Burke, Charlaine Harris, James Rollins, Harlan Coben, Jeff Abbott, John Saul, Jonathan Kellerman, Barry Eisler, CJ Box, Laurell K. Hamilton, Jack Ketchum, Tom Piccarilli, Dale Brown, Kevin J. Anderson, Joe Lansdale, Peter Straub, Ramsey Campbell, Carrie Ryan, and many other best-selling authors. Jonathan also writes the SCARY OUT THERE blog, through which he and his guests explore teen horror fiction in its many aspects. Current and upcoming guests include R.L. Stine, Holly Black, Libba Bray, Nancy Holder, Kim Harrison, Ellen Hopkins and many others. That blog can be found on the website of the Horror Writers Association: http://www.horror.org/yahorror/?p=280.

He is one third of the hirsute pop-culture podcast THREE GUYS WITH BEARDS, along with Christopher Golden and James A. Moore.

He is a frequent keynote speaker, guest of honor and workshop leader at genre cons, libraries, writers conferences and publishing industry events, including the Writers Digest Conference, American Library Association, KeyCon, American Library Association, ThrillerFest, Zombie Fest, Heather Graham's Writers for New Orleans, Central Coast Writers Conference, NeCon, NY Comic Con, Texas Library Association Annual Conference, Sisters in Crime, Context, New York Comic Con, Dallas-Fort Worth Writers Conference, Tucson Festival of Books, Long Beach Comic Con, BackSpace, PennWriters, Dragon*Con, PhilCon, Horror-Realm, Boucher Con, HorrorFind, Monster Mania, Philadelphia Writers Conference, Balticon, Romance Writers of America, American Library Association, ZenKaiKon,The Write Stuff, Hypericon, AnthoCon, KillerCon, NAIBA, LunaCon, and many others.

Jonathan has sold more than 1,200 feature articles and 3,000 columns; as well as greeting cards, song lyrics, poetry, technical manuals, call-floor scripts, and two plays, including Tales from the Fire Zone.

Jonathan is a Contributing Editor for The Big Thrill (the newsletter of the International Thriller Writers), and is a member of SFWA, IAMTW, MWA, SCBWI, SFWA and HWA, as well as a jurist for the Edgar, Stoker, and Scribe Awards.

Jonathan was the Executive Director of the Writers Room of Bucks County (2005-06) and co-owner of the Writers Corner USA (2006-2009). Jonathan regularly visits local middle schools, high schools and colleges to talk about books, reading, publishing and the writing life. He is a board member of the River Union Stage, a professional equity theater based in Stockton, New Jersey. In 2006 he helped found the Wild River Review, an notable online literary journal.

Jonathan is a founding member of The Liars Club, a group of networking publishing professionals that includes celebrated authors Merry Jones, Gregory Frost, Jon McGoran, Ed Pettit, Dennis Tafoya, Keith Strunk, Don Lafferty, Kelly Simmons, Marie Lamba, Solomon Jones, Stephen Susco, Chuck Wendig, Janice Gable Bashman, Cordelia Biddle, Christopher Golden, James A. Moore, Scott Sigler, Amber Benson, Kathryn Craft, Jeff Marriott, Nancy Holder and Michael Boatman. The Liars Club works to support booksellers, raise awareness and support for public libraries, and cultivate a joy of reading and books. The late NY Times bestseller L. A. Banks was a founding member of the Liars Club.

Jonathan created the Writers Coffeehouse, a free three-hour open-agenda networking and discussion session for writers of all genres and levels of skill in multiple locations around the country each month.

Jonathan has been a popular writing teacher and career counselor for writers for the last two decades. He teaches a highly regard series of classes and workshops including Write Your Novel in Nine Months, Act Like a Writer, Revise & Sell, Experimental Writing for Teens, and others. Many of his students have gone on to obtain representation and/or publish in short and novel-length fiction, magazine feature writing, nonfiction books, TV, film, and comics.

In 2004 Jonathan was inducted into the International Martial Arts Hall of Fame largely because of his extensive writings in that field. He is the former Expert Witness for the Philadelphia District Attorney's Office for murder cases involving martial arts; and he's done extensive work for civil cases.

Jonathan and his wife, Sara Jo, to whom he dedicates all of his published works, and their dog, Rosie, live in Del Mar, California.

Visit his website/blog and sign up for his free newsletter at www.jonathanmaberry.com
www.facebook.com/jonathanmaberry, www.twitter.com/jonathanmaberry

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

40 of 42 people found the following review helpful By kazza on April 28, 2009
Format: Paperback
I have not read a book that genuinely spooked me in quite some time! Am I jaded? No. I am just very advanced in my threshhold for terror. (Okay, I'm jaded) This book was like watching a B-horror flick with a million cheap shots to make you jump in your seat. It was great! I am female, and lest I betray my gender in a stereotype, I do not read military action novels. But this book has an action/military/horror/mystery theme that works beautifully. Joe Ledger is my new hero; he can do it all.

So, why not 5 stars? The action got a bit repetitive and ho-hum in parts. I feel like the book could have been condensed by about 50 pages. But definitely read this book! It is pure enjoyment from start to finish.
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70 of 78 people found the following review helpful By mellion108 VINE VOICE on February 25, 2009
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Congratulations, Jonathan Maberry. You have managed to combine two of my biggest fears - the fear of unchecked biological warfare and the fear that my brains will be sucked out by zombies.

Hardened, world weary Detective Joe Ledger has seen it all in the course of his job. He knows the very worst that human beings can do to each other. Then he's not-so-willingly introduced to the Department of Military Sciences (DMS) and its mysterious, powerful leader, Mr. Church, and he finally learns that he hasn't scratched the surface of the worst that people can do. Turns out that religious fanaticism and hatred of the United States have met up with big-money corporate interests, and *voila* the Sword of the Faithful is born - zombie weapons unleashed by terrorists upon the U.S. to purge the world of infidels.

Ledger is all man. He's tough. He has an eye for the ladies and a deep abiding love for his country. He knows weapons and military strategy, and he's a natural born leader. He's chilled to the bone by this new, hellish weapon, but he and his team push forward to try to save the country before this plague spreads to the world.

If you like explosions, fighting, tough-guy talk and scary, brain-munching zombies, you'll love this book. I was riveted from page 1, and I raced to get to the last word. The zombies are strong and hungry. The good guys are the best, and the bad guys are the worst. There is nail-biting action at every turn, and a surprising amount of humor thrown in. This is one of the best zombie novels I've read in a very long time.

Bring on the sequel! I can't wait to see what Ledger gets himself into the next time.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Julie W. Capell on January 13, 2013
Format: Paperback
I once heard a movie critic say of one of the Jurassic Park movies that you if you go to a movie like that to get complex characters and deep, philosophical discussions on the nature of God, you're going for the wrong reasons and you are going to be disappointed. You go to see dinosaurs. Lots and lots of dinosaurs.
That's how I felt about this movie--excuse me, book. It was everything a thriller should be. The hero was a brick who could hold his own in just about any fight, but had enough of a brain to wonder occasionally about what all the killing was doing to his psyche. The black hat had understandable motives for trying to unleash a zombie plague and had his own trials to overcome. There was a bit of a love interest. And there were zombies. Lots and lots of zombies. The pacing was terrific, the bon mots made me smile and the whole thing was so visual that it was easy to see how this would make a great movie. Listening to it as an audio book performed by Ray Porter was the perfect way to experience this adventure. I've started to get used to the way many of the best audiobook performers can switch accents seamlessly, but Porter really amazed me when he nailed the voice for the protagonists' best friend, who is described in the book as sounding like "a young Raul Julia." An all-around fun listen that will not disappoint anyone looking to be entertained.
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74 of 95 people found the following review helpful By Daniel Dadmun on October 27, 2010
Format: Paperback
I'm a big fan of zombies and action. The reviews I read made me thing this book was written for me. The start was good; gun-nut/tactical porn that would make anyone whose played a Rainbow 6 game excited. As it wore on, however, I liked it less and less. Paper-thin characters who are so extreme I was left shaking my head. The bad guys are evil geniuses who put together a cutting-edge medical lab in an Afghanistan cave. The woman is so beautiful she can stop traffic with just her eyes AND she's a super genius who can manufacture zombies. Her counterpart on the other side is gorgeous AND a weapons expert. And these are just the henchwomen.
Skip it. You can find something better to do with your time.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Adam Bailey on December 23, 2012
Format: Paperback
Patient Zero is a lightning paced biotech thriller introducing Joe Ledger (a kick-ass protag). Ledger is a detective from Baltimore who gets recruited by the Government to lead the DMS (Department of Military Sciences), a rapid response task force created to take care of problems too tough for Homeland Security. The DMS has to stop a terrorist group from releasing a bioweapon that turns people into Zombies. If released, this bioweapon could destroy civilization as we know it.

A well-crafted story. Great writing, tons of action with complex and authentic characters; and, oh yeah, zombies. What else could I ask for? LOVED IT!!! Need more...
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