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Infected    by Scott Sigler order for
by Scott Sigler
Order:  USA  Can
Crown, 2008 (2008)
Hardcover, CD, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Alex Telander

Scott Sigler is a new kind of writer to join the publishing world; an author for the twenty-first century. Wanting to bring his work to people for free, he began in 2005 by podcasting his book Earthcore a bit at a time, with continuous updates. It was branded as 'the world's first podcast-only novel' and Sigler started off with three listeners; ending with over ten thousand subscribers. He followed this with Ancestor, Infection, and The Rookie, and currently has over thirty thousand subscribers. Now, with a big name publisher, Sigler brings us Infected in book form (a free podcast version is also available).

In Infected, something is seriously wrong with the world. Something is making people crazy to the point where they are driven to kill others, often their family, and then to horribly mutilate themselves, finally taking their own lives. The government is trying its best to keep the whole thing a secret, and at the same time to find out what's making people do this and develop a solution as fast as possible. CDC is working nonstop - the big problem is that once they get to one of the bodies of these special people, the rate of decomposition is so rapid that they don't have enough time to perform autopsies and fully examine the bodies before they are left with nothing more than a black murky puddle.

Sigler has done his research, giving the novel a classic Michael Crichton feel, going into the science and the biology as members of the CDC try to find out what sort of infection is making people kill others, and more importantly how contagious it is. While there is a lot of head jumping from various characters that can leave the reader a little disoriented, and the writing at times seems to need some editing (the flow being disjointed), Sigler demonstrates a unique voice in Infected that will only get better with successive books.

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