I have just finished reading “H10N1″ by M.R. Cornelius.

H10N1 - M.R. Cornelius

H10N1 – M.R. Cornelius (via Amazon)

It is a disaster novel about a pandemic which devastates most of the world but is set in the USA.

The blurb reads:

“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.”

What is interesting is that it starts out as a pandemic with the horrible sickness, the dying, and the rotting corpses everywhere, but then it turns into a story about the aftermath when the virus has killed the unlucky ones and the lucky ones try to stay alive and keep their precious cargo of food and fuel away from others.

Sanchez and Rick steal a specially adapted van to get away from the sickness and the terrible political madness of New York and go off in search of safer places. despite their arguments and initial dislike of each other, they manage to evade the many dying and desperate souls and the decaying bodies everywhere, and find a safe haven with Rick’s friends on their commune where they are self-sufficient and cut off from the rest of the world in order to protect themselves. Soon, Rick and Sanchez’s presence draws enemies who ruin their safe haven, so the four of them go in search of the Biosphere which Sanchez’s friend Mai has started living. They find this amazing place which provides safety, food and companionship.

However, there are several unpleasant characters, with one particularly nasty one called Michael who is creepy and lazy. The four try to make the Biosphere more productive and work hard to get everyone to chip in as they all have to live there. Here, Rick and Sanchez’s relationship turns into romance, which seemed inevitable once they stopped thinking about going their seperate ways as first planned. Their separate losses bring them together and they find happiness in the midst of all the turmoil around them.

Unfortunately, things soon take a turn for the worse, and, after a devastating showdown, they end up back on the dangerous roads trying to find somewhere else. There is hope at the end of the novel when an old acquaintance turns out to be their saviour and a new kind of life begins after so many months of devastation.

I liked this book because it was terrifyingly realistic and could actually happen! It makes you think about what you would do to save yourself and your loved ones. There is a lot of death, sickness and loss in this book, and the beginning is horrific as it starts with someone being coaxed into swallowing a suicide pill to escape the horror unfolding around them.  The violence is inevitable and it shows just how desperate, greedy and unreasonable people can get under pressure.

I give this book an 8/10 because it is gripping, horrifying and fascinating! I definitely recommend it if you’re into the sci-fi, apocalytpic, dystopian theme books!

Note: I read this on my Kindle (only available as an Ebook)





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