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Pandora's Clock
John J. Nance
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Pandora's Clock

3.84  ·  Rating Details  ·  840 Ratings  ·  64 Reviews
The biowarfare people call the bug a Level 4 pathogen. That means no cure. No hope. No survivors.Now it's loose on Quantum Flight 66. One passenger is already dead. The experts say in 48 hours the rest may follow.James Holland, former U.S. fighter pilot, now flying this commercial Boeing 747, isn't ready to die. They say he can't land his plane. They say he's a threat to t ...more
Paperback, 501 pages
Published May 16th 1996 by Feature (first published August 1st 1995)
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Mar 23, 2008 Ian rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, thriller
Great thrill ride!

I saw the movie on TV before I read the book and I thoroughly enjoyed it - it literally kept me on the edge of my seat all the way. So, when I stumbled upon the novel in a bookshop, I just had to buy it.

This book really makes you think: what if? There is a passenger on a plane with a contagious virus; no airport wants to let the plane land there, and some fighter plane is trying to shoot the passenger jet down. What to do?

Usually I find books of the type where you have many cha
Billy Roper
Aug 24, 2015 Billy Roper rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent thrill-ride, with a satisfying conclusion, written by an obvious aviation expert and commercial pilot. I enjoy books which help me learn in an entertaining fashion, and this one does. Strangely, though I've been to the Hart Senate Office building and the U.S. Capitol, I had no idea there was an underground tram tunnel between them. File that away for when I become First Citizen.

This book also reveals a lot of the internal intrigue between different Federal departments, and within them
Linda Munro
Apr 18, 2011 Linda Munro rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This tale takes place mainly on a 757-400 originally flying from Germany to the United States. When the German government realizes that a passenger on that plane may have been exposed to a level four (deadly) pathogen; they will do anything to bring the plane back to their own soil so that the world will not know what they have inadvertently unleasehed. Once that the German government is told exactly what was uleasehed, a deadly pathogen with a 100% infecion rate and an 80% kill rate, they even ...more
Jun 19, 2011 Kristen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller, 2011
If you love aviation thrillers, this one is for you. When a sick passenger might be infected by a strain on board a Boenig 747, it causes chaos across the world. With one sick passenger, there's worries about it might be a dread virus, affecting everyone it touches by air. And that causes James Holland, pilot of Quantum 66, concerns, when he's denied to land on other countries from Iceland to Spain. Meanwhile, someone from the CIA has a hatched plan to shoot down the plane, blaming Aqbah, a terr ...more
Nov 01, 2011 Space rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Plane takes off, someone on it has an infectious disease. No one will let the plane land. This stuff is intense. The whole of the book takes place on an airplane, and involves many countries and airspace regulations. If you ever fly on airplanes, and you have a tendency to get worried about stuff like getting trapped in the sky, then don't read this. It's very realistic. Nance is a master aviator, and a very good writer. He will make you believe you should never set foot on a plane again. Just s ...more
Jun 06, 2014 Lauren rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014-read
A man gets on a flight bound for the USA from Germany and the flight attendants realize right away that he is not feeling well. Before they can even exit European air space, the passenger collapses and a doctor is called to help. They perform CPR on him but he is just hanging on to life. Captain James Holland requests the ability to land in England to assist the passenger but is denied because the British government has learned from the Germans that there could be a Level 4 pathogen on board. Th ...more
Nov 03, 2014 Rob1109 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As I was reading this novel I was saying to myself this would make a great movie. Not until after I finished reading it did I learn that it was.

This was the first book I've read by John Nance. It will not be my last.

This novel grabbed from the opening pages and never let up. I cant really that it was a quick or easy read. I read the paperback and the print was fairly small with 40 lines per page. All told it probably worked out to close to 600 pages. However, I'd much rather read 600 in a good n
Dec 11, 2014 Carol rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have a stack of old audio tape cassette books that I want to whittle down so I popped the first cassette in a cheap player that I had bought. The player buttons broke off when I turned the side over! I was so engaged by John K. Nance’s thriller, Pandora’s Clock that I held the down the metal remainder of the play button to hear the other side. This is the first time that I ever endured pain to listen to an audio book! It was that good. Thank goodness I found out that my old boom box still coul ...more
Aug 24, 2009 David rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-2009
I liked the plot and I liked the whole beginning of the book quite a bit. I think this could have been a killer tale if about 200 pages of repetitious material was removed. Sadly, the characters were far too hollow for a book of this length.
Despite my low review, I think Nance has potential and I'm going to assume that this just isn't his best work.
Nov 26, 2009 Carollia rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I didn't like it very much.During the first part, the author spent so many pages talking about the disease, and repeats the same story over and over again, it's hard to keep reading. It gets a little bit better after that . He uses the word "nodding" a thousand times, it's very annoying
Jun 27, 2011 William rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good pot boiler aviation thriller by Nance; the first of his novels that I read, and I've enjoyed it each time I've gone back to it.
Aug 04, 2009 Brandon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Interesting book as someone put it they figured it would be like Snakes on a Plane and Andromeda Strain...
Andrea Kepner
Jul 14, 2010 Andrea Kepner rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of my all-time favorite books. I can read it over and over without getting bored.
Jennice Mckillop
Jan 03, 2015 Jennice Mckillop rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to Jennice by: My son when he was in college
Absolutely marvelous novel. A must read for lovers of medical suspense and international politics.
A flight leaving Germany headed to New York has a medical emergency on board when a passenger has a heart attack. The Pilot asked for permission to land in London, the closest airport, and is denied. What?
Then the story begins and hold your attention to the last sentence.
GREAT story and is so pertinent in today's pandemic situations.
Marijn Vanbelle
Pandora's klok

James Holland is de captain op Quantum vlucht 66 van Frankfurt naar New York. Een vliegtuig afgeladen met mensen die voor de kerst thuis willen zijn. Een routineklusje. Een hartaanval onder een van de passagiers dwingt James Holland tot een noodlanding op Schiphol. Op het allerlaatste ogenblik wordt de toestemming tot landen ineens ingetrokken. De ene luchthaven na de andere weigert Quantum vlucht 66 toe te laten. James Holland beseft langzaam dat ze een probleem aan boord hebben w
Aug 26, 2014 Monique rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Interesting premise about a plane that carries a contingent of passengers, possibly contaminated with an incurable virus that could spread like the plague.

The captain must summon all his courage and imagination to figure out how to outwit the people who want them harm and, how to get help from unlikely places.

A good summer read.
Oct 01, 2009 Tom rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
James Holland is the pilot of a 747 scheduled to fly from Frankfurt to New York. Shortly after take-off, one of the passengers becomes very sick. Holland tries to divert to London, but they won't let him land. Then he tries to go back to Frankfurt, but they won't let him land. Everybody believes his stricken passenger has been infected with a "doomsday" virus that is one hundred percent lethal. The next two days (he does get to land, eventually. We all know a 747 can't stay in the air for 24 hou ...more
Feb 25, 2013 Adrinnah rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
HORRIBLE BOOK NEVER EVER EVER IN A MILLION YEARS READ IT! I chose to read it for a book report, and it was one of the worst decisions of my book reading life! Super boring, title has nothing to do with the book, and lots of useless scenes. I will never recommend this book to ANYONE. The book has potential, but quickly lost me because of all the filler. The story could have been told in 200 pages, but there was a lot of repeating the same stuff over and over. I love reading books, and size is NOT ...more
Mar 10, 2014 Susan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was just a fun book - very suspenseful and difficult to put down the last 200 pages or so. Perfect as a vacation read.
Sarah Eckert
Apr 01, 2008 Sarah Eckert rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Coming from his experience as a 747 (?) pilot, John Nance really knows how to write a mean flying book. I've loved all his books, and usually am so hooked on them that I have to start the book early enough in the day so that I can finish it (I can't put it down).

This one gets only 4 stars because:
1. I'd already read enough of John Nance books that this was starting to get formulaic
2. It has a pretty gross section in it for those of us who are a little squemish around blood. It's only a couple of
Lori Matrisciano
Aug 03, 2015 Lori Matrisciano rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
loved it!
May 27, 2014 Amit rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Pandora's Clock, a thriller book set on an airplane. An airplane book. John J. Nance is one of my favourite authors and airplane books are my favourite genre. Pandora's Clock is about a group of people who have possibly been infected by a virus. The book is filled with chills, thrills, suspense, drama, espionage, explosions, international politics, death, mayhem, and a little bit of romance. Just don't read it before getting on a plane, because it might just freak you out. 9/10
Jun 29, 2009 Sandra rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
What happens when a 747 departs from Russia to the U.S. with a sick passenger who dies en route. And may have a "level four" virus that could wipe out the world if it gets released. Capt. James Holland denied landing privileges, and is shot at by terrorist group trying to take advantage of situation.
I guess I liked it well enough to finish, but it could have been shorter, and the ending leaves one wondering about who the terrorists really was.
Nov 17, 2015 Maggie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: action-thriller
Four and a half stars. Great fun, great adventure
Aug 22, 2009 Lee rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-i-own, thriller
A good, solid read of reasonable length. No glaring problems or faults. I suppose a little more character development could have improved it. The ending was good (and by good, I don't mean "Happily ever after for everyone" or anything like that) I just mean it was done well and didn't feel like the standard cookie cut-out ending even a lot of the best books play into.
Mar 17, 2013 Jodi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone!
I enjoyed reading this book - it was quite a page-turner! I was so mad that nobody would help them and nobody was disclosing the truth! It was a catch 22 though! Risk involved but someone needed to step up and help. I was so glad the captian of the plane finally stood his ground and landed!!
Sep 22, 2011 Kathy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was glad that I read the book before watching the moving. They left so much out in the first half that it made it hard to follow. The book was hard at times to put down because I wanted to find out what happened next. I wish John Nance would write more like this one. It was my favorite.
Michele Maxson
Don't bother even picking this one up off the shelf. I determined what the ending would be around page 66, out of 357 pages. The dialogue was stale and the story went no where. Total waste of time. Stopped reading at page 66, skipped ahead and verified my suspicions and put it aside.
Jeff Brateman
Interesting plot of a virus on a plane, and no one allowing it to land, but that's about it. Not really great writing, and the characters were just blah. Of course, I don't really remember much about the book, so who knows. Obviously it wasn't great.
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John J. Nance is an American pilot, aviation safety expert, and author. He served in the USAF during the Vietnam War and also as a Lt. Colonel in Operation Desert Storm.
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