Sunday, February 07, 2010

Book 43: Contagious

Contagious by Scott Sigler

This is the sequel to Infected in which America discovered that there were aliens from rather far away who had sent some kind of biological weapon. This biological weapon infected a few people, causing extreme paranoia and was accompanied by blue, triangular growths that would hatch and were created to build a gate of sorts.

So far, there is only one survivor of this affliction, Perry Dawsey, and it may well have driven him insane. However, he also still has a link or connection to these beings and as a result has been instrumental in preventing the gates from opening. He is currently the only reason the United States hasn't been overrun and has been able to stay ahead of the enemy forces.

As it turns out, the hatchlings and the infection are all controlled by a higher level pod that has been releasing them into the environment. While it is completely mechanical, it has been analyzing its success rates, and has made the virus evolve with each new cannister or dose of the infection. This time, it releases two types: one for the hatchlings to continue to build the gates and one for protectors to defend them until they can achieve their mission. And this time, it is contagious.

In order to protect itself for all future outcomes and possibilities, the pod or orbital uses one of the defenders and prepares her to link all the others when it is time - basically, it wants something to be able to take over its duties in case the government discovers and destroys it. This person ends up being a willful and spoiled seven year old girl, who is probably like most seven year old girls but now has incredible power. Obviously, this can't be a good thing.

Some of the characters were a bit one dimensional, especially the new president's advisor, Vanessa but other than that it was definitely a great, fast read. I basically devoured the thing because I wanted to see where it was going. Sigler gives enough background as well that it is not necessary to have read the first one all too recently or possibly at all, but I would definitely recommend picking up the series. They aren't incredibly deep but they are definitely a good way to spend an afternoon or two - also, this novel was definitely perfect for the plane ride I was on.

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