2 months ago
Thursday, April 14, 2011
Patient Zero by Jonathan Maberry
Joe Ledger has some really rough patches in his past. You could say he has some scars on his psyche. He's kind of dealt with those psychic scars by becoming a bit of a badass. Okay, he's become the biggest and best badass there is. Good thing he's on the side of the angels, huh?
As Patient Zero opens, Joe is being forcibly recruited by a super-secret government agency called the DMS--the Department of Military Sciences. Run by a mysterious and apparently uber-powerful man called, usually, Mr. Church (a bigger badass, even, than Joe Ledger), the DMS is on the trail of the most horrifying terrorist plot never imagined: biological warfare in the form of a prion disease that creates perfect killing machines out of its victims.
Patient Zero is more military/action thriller than horror novel, although the horror is pretty awesome (and gruesome). The action, though...the action is top-notch and unrelenting. The fast-paced narrative alternates between Joe Ledger's first person narrative, replete with many no-holds-barred battles, and third person narratives from the terrorists' perspective. More than once, after particularly disturbing terrorist chapters, I found myself muttering warnings to Ledger and the DMS through gritted teeth. That's effective storytelling.
Posted by Rebecca Glenn at 6:31 PM