A deadly influenza virus rages out of control. There is no easy-fix vaccine. No eleventh-hour containment. Only death. With no workforce, power plants are unmanned so there’s no means of communication; police and fire departments have collapsed so no one is safe; looters are scavenging everything from big-screen TVs to canned peas. When Dr. Taeya Sanchez finds herself unceremoniously dismissed from an emergency medical facility in New York, she decides to steal the hospital’s armored van for a midnight escape. Unfortunately, Rick DeAngelo, a driver for the hospital, has already stocked the van for his own getaway. Thrown into an unfriendly alliance, these two must pick their way across the dangerous wasteland of America in search of a safe haven. And as the miles roll by, they discover that the living should be feared much more than the festering corpses out there.
H10N1 is the first novel by M.R. Cornelius. Cornelius had first tried her hand at romance novels and using her own words, was a "dismal failure". But she did, "increase her repertoire of adjectives such as throbbing, pulsing, thrumming, vibrating, hammering, pumping". H10N1 is a post-apocalyptic thriller about a flu pandemic. If you've seen Contagion then you have an idea of what you are in for. I have not so that may not be a fair comparison. But I did watch Carriers. It can be streamed from Netflix if you haven't seen it. I think that is a better comparison, personally. The pandemic happens fairly quickly. Eventually you learn how it effects the whole world. But if you read or watched enough of these types of stories you know what's going to happen and H10N1 is no different. Same story, different plague. I was not happy for half of the book and didn't follow the story very well. I can't tell you what happened other than road trip, meet bad guys, run away from bad guys, repeat. The adventure portion of this book is not its strong point. Sadly, it's a thriller with few thrills. I also found the narrators voice to change from a sophisticated educated person to a frat boy making crude sex references.
What Cornelius does do well is the second half, when they reach the bio-dome. Don't worry, this is better than the Pauly Shore movie. So much better. I wish that the book started here. This is the gold at the end of the rainbow. The characters come to life and the story becomes interesting and memorable. Loved it all the way through to the end and the epilogue.
Cornelius did write romance stories previously and that clearly taught the author how to write about relationships. If Cornelius continues to focus on what she does best she will be very successful author.
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