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Petroplague Kindle Edition

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Amy Rogers is the crisp, haunting new voice of science thrillers. If you think global warming is scary, wait till you read Petroplague." Norb Vonnegut, author of The Gods of Greenwich

"Petroplague has earned a spot in the top five on my best of 2011 list." ThrillersRockTwitter

"A terrific thriller debut...Amy Rogers is one to watch." Paul McEuen, author of Spiral

"It's wonderful to read a thriller whose author knows her subject backwards and forwards, and demonstrates it on every page. As someone who lives in the LA area, I always look for signs that someone doesn't know this area or how it operates.  Amy Rogers nails every aspect of LA, from neighborhoods to our isolation in the event of a disaster like this one." PopcornReads.com

"A great example of lab lit in the Crichtonesque school of epic science disaster writing...Amy Rogers has done an excellent job of not only crafting an exciting and thrilling piece of lab lit fiction, but also of offering an education in the science behind the scenes and a glimpse of a future we might face." LabLit.com

"Rogers goes out of her way to actually talk about a scientist and the way science is done as more than just caricatures..." Kevin Bonham, ScienceBlogs.com

About the Author

Amy Rogers, M.D., Ph.D., began her writing career in elementary school by (unsuccessfully) submitting anecdotes to Reader's Digest in hopes of earning twenty-five bucks. By junior high her real passion was science, especially microbiology. In the bedroom of her home in rural southern Minnesota, she kept Petri dishes of bacteria in an egg incubator and won purple ribbons in science fairs. That passion led her to study biochemistry at Harvard, and ultimately to earn a doctorate in immunology. Wee beasties animated her years of teaching microbiology at the university level. More recently, micro-critters inspired her to write novels and short stories that highlight their amazing powers.

Amy's thrilling science-themed novels pose frightening "what if?" questions. Compelling characters and fictionalized science--not science fiction--make her books page-turners that seamlessly blend reality and imagination. Relentlessly curious, Dr. Rogers works for scientific literacy and nature education for kids. 

This author loves dim sum, Ted Drewes, redwood forests, Minnesota lakes, Hawaiian beaches, and cats. She lives in Northern California with her husband and two exceptional children who believe she has an unreasonable tolerance for mysterious things growing in her refrigerator.

Product Details

  • File Size: 869 KB
  • Print Length: 336 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 194041900X
  • Publisher: Diversion Books (November 19, 2013)
  • Publication Date: November 19, 2013
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005IK4WEC
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #593,690 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Amy Rogers, MD, PhD, is a Harvard-educated writer, scientist, educator, and critic. Through her book review website ScienceThrillers.com, her publishing company ScienceThrillers Media, and her own writing, Amy advocates for literate entertainment in the form of great stories with real science.

Amy writes thrilling science-themed novels in the style of Michael Crichton (PETROPLAGUE, REVERSION). She also composes a monthly column "Science in the Neighborhood" for Inside Publications. She is a member of International Thriller Writers.

Amy loves dim sum, Ted Drewes, redwood forests, lakes with loons, Hawaiian beaches, and cats. She lives in Northern California with her husband and two exceptional children who believe she has an unreasonable tolerance for mysterious things growing in her refrigerator.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Nylon Admiral on September 10, 2012
Format: Paperback
Other than Michael Crichton's Prey I've never read a science thriller. Why I have no idea, I love science and I definitely don't mind a good thriller, but for some reason this genre has never hit my radar. Now that I've finished Petroplague though...Well, I think that may be about to change.

Petroplague is a fascinating look at a reality we may very well find ourselves tangled within. When a university experiment in biofuel is targetted by an eco-terrorist, a chain reaction of devastating events soon follow. Designed to "eat" oil, the syntrophus bacteria (the stars of the experiment) begin to destroy the fuel supply when they're released into the Los Angeles soil, screeching life in L.A to a grinding halt. One thing this book did very well, was paint exactly how devastating this event would be. Even if, like me, you don't rely on cars for your transport, once the petrol (gasoline to those of you in the States) is contaminated, EVERYTHING is affected. It has a huge knock on effect. If you can't drive your car, catch a bus or hail a cab, how do you get to work? If you can't get to work how do shops run? If cars/trucks/buses are down, how do you get food and supplies into your area? If you have an accident, or something happens, how does an ambulance or fire engine reach you? How can people broadcast the news on any other devastating effects if they can't get around? And if there is bacteria in the fuel supply, who knows what kind of affect that could be having environmentally. Now imagine this going worldwide, imagine the efforts officials would be making to contain it so that it doesn't spread that wide. Terrifying to think of, right?
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Beth on December 12, 2011
Format: Paperback
On the basis of having read two books by Michael Crichton, I will tell you that if you like his books, you'll like PETROPLAGUE by Amy Rogers, M.D., Ph.D. Except, in some ways, PETROPLAGUE is better.

The book begins with an environmentalist who wishes he could do something really big. From there, we move to the main character, Christine, a biologist and Ph.D. candidate, working the La Brea Tar Pits. There's an accident. Then there are further accidents in and around Los Angeles. All are the result of oil gone bad.

An eco-terrorist blew up an underground storage tank at an abandoned gas station, and now genetically modified bacteria is in the Los Angeles fuel supply. It's eating up the fuel, causing accidents and halting the area transportation systems. And the environmentalist who wanted to do something really big now knows the really big thing he can do: spread the bacteria to other parts of the world so that no one can use oil, the root of all evil.

This idea of unintended consequences of environmentalists sounds so much like a Michael Crichton idea, I'd have sworn that Rogers cowrote this book with him if he were alive. But, even though I almost never think a movie based on a book is better than the book, I did feel that way with Crichton books. I don't think that about PETROPLAGUE.

It's not that this book wouldn't make a great movie. I'm sure it would, and I'd love to see it.

But PETROPLAGUE is based on science, and probably because of Rogers' credentials in microbiology and immunology, all of her book sounds possible. It's not science fiction. When the accidents happen and cars and airplanes stop working, these really don't sound like a stretch.

This is compared with a Crichton book I read, STATE OF FEAR.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Darrell Delamaide on September 12, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I'm always a sucker for the disaster movies on TV - asteroids, global warming, earthquakes, you name it - so in my new exploration of e-books I readily took up Amy Rogers' technothriller about bacteria that start eating up the world's oil supply.

This plot device, based on extrapolation of the bacteria that are used to help clean up oil spills, is not completely original, I learn from Amazon, because a 2007 book - Ill Wind by Kevin J. Anderson and Doug Beason - has a similar premise for its point of departure.

But it all depends on execution, and Rogers does a pretty good job of focusing this potentially global disaster in a dramatic action starring a Latina graduate student at UCLA and restricting the initial disaster to Los Angeles. Motor-driven LA is, of course, the perfect place to feature a gasoline-eating bug and the picture of a city paralyzed and quarantined by the disappearance of all petroleum products is captivating.

Los Angeles is also an excellent choice because of its geographic isolation - a fact few of us non-West Coasters are even aware of. The author uses the mountains ringing LA to great effect as a way of trying to contain the disaster and as a challenge for the heroes trying to provide the silver bullet to end the disaster scenario.

Christina Gonzalez is the grad student who is working with the "mad" scientist character Dr. Chen to tinker with these bacteria so they can be used to convert the hydrocarbons in hard-to-get oil sands into methane - natural gas - that is much easier to recover and kinder to the environment. It is a two-step process, and unfortunately for the planet's outlook, only the bugs performing the first step - converting petroleum to hydrogen and acetic acid - are the ones who get loose.
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