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(Dr. Noah Haldane #1)

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  1,393 ratings  ·  99 reviews
Genesis of a Plague

Right now, in a remote corner of rural China, a farmer and his family are sharing their water supply with their livestock: chickens, ducks, pigs, sheep. They share the same waste-disposal system, too.

Bird viruses meet their human counterparts in the bloodstreams of the swine, where they mix and mutate before spreading back into the human population. And
mass_market, 407 pages
Published February 1st 2005 by Tor Books
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Average rating 3.75  · 
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 ·  1,393 ratings  ·  99 reviews

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Dec 18, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: general-fiction
This is a debut novel from this author. And you can tell it's a debut novel.

The characters: The lead character, Haldane, is mostly believable. I could see him existing and functioning in the real world. Gwen is not quite as believable. She was more of a plot device than a character. She lacked personality. I won't say she was entirely two-dimensional, but she was close. Most of the characters seemed to lack something. They all had a two-dimensional aspect that made it hard to care for them.
Aug 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
I was pretty impressed by this action packed novel. There were a few annoying moments where the author repeated himself, making me think I was a dummy who needed to be reminded of important facts (thus the 4 star rating). It made me question every coughing human I can across in the real world - including myself! It had kind of the standard themes going on but it kept me glued to the book, staying up late to finish it off.
Toni Osborne
Feb 12, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This novel is a compelling and over the edge thriller, Daniel Kalla has written a real page turner one hard to put down.

The story opens in a remote corner of China; where a new and deadly flu is spreading amongst the population of Gansu Province. WHO immediately sends a team headed by Dr Noah Haldane to investigate. They soon discover that this new virus is far deadlier than SARS and is being spread intentionally with devastating effects...WHO struggles to contain the outbreak but the virus has
May 30, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery-thriller
This book has been on my Want To Read list for a long time, so Im glad I finally found it and was able to read it. Unfortunately, I was somewhat let down. Just from the title I thought there was going to be a massive worldwide pandemic. Perhaps this author has never read The Stand. Ive read that one several times worldwide devastation, mass hysteria, dogs and cats living together - which is what I was looking for in this story, but that didnt happen. And I dont expect perfection in the books I ...more
Jul 13, 2009 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 09, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: books-i-own
In defiance of the ebola scares I have been deliberately reading everything I own about plagues and (aptly named) pandemics. For a first novel, I was highly impressed; it was a little rough around the edges, but a thoroughly fun and enjoyable read. The characters were a little flat, especially the women, and he spent so much time trying not to delve into stereotypes that they became stereotypes.

I will say that I wasn't impressed with the random addition of the (view spoiler)
Elizabeth Cook
Feb 10, 2016 rated it it was ok
As a first book, awesome, good job.
I think the cover and the reviews make it out to be a wilder book than it is. I personally found it very predictable.
Another review on here mentioned how characters where unintentionally stereotyped and I very much agree with that.
Writing style is smooth and easy to read. Only issue with the style is that it's almost too natural (over discussed details, repeating conversations) that some parts are mundane. Would translate well as a screenplay because of this.
Melinda Elizabeth
Jan 19, 2011 rated it liked it
Fairly basic story about bioterrorism. I felt the book had a lot of irrelevant storylines, especially between Haldane and his wife/daughter. The only reason I would admit to them being required is if they got the flu as well. Alas they didn't, so the considerable moaning about his wife having a love affair with the woman next door was even more painful.

There are books out there that cover this theme in a much better way. I wouldn't say don't read it, as it's a very basic read and enjoyable
Jan 03, 2008 rated it liked it
Pandemic by Daniel Kalla is a very complex book. I would recommend this book to anyone who has free time. This book talks about a disease that is spreading all over Europe, Asia and Africa. This disease is similar to the flu but it doesn't go away and is more extreame. People should read this book because it is like a movie and it talks about the struggles of people. This book can relate to the world because many people have heard about many people in Africa have AIDS, well this the same but it ...more
Sep 15, 2009 rated it it was ok
The author might know a lot about virology, but so do I.

While the author sometimes managed to explain pretty complex aspects of virus strategy very well, he othertimes tried to fool the reader with what a virus expert might know and say. I did not like that second part.

Also, he can't write about people, dialogue or romance for a penny's worth. It's really really bad.

Hopefully he got better after this 2005 debut, but I'm not sure I am prepared to find out after this debacle.
Jan 01, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: pandemic
I really wanted to like this book. It had a promising plot, interesting sounding characters, and a doctor as an author to assure accuracy. But . . . the book never really seemed to get started. I kept waiting for the plot to get interesting, but it never really did. It just didn't keep you interested, and since it took me MONTHS to finish it, not a good sign.
Debbie Cotter
Sep 10, 2015 rated it did not like it
It is so sad when the best part of the book after 71 pages is the prolog! I have put it down to boring, even my daughter said " WOW, five pages of background history on a doctor that is not the main character!"
Betsy Clark
Oct 07, 2010 rated it really liked it
Super possible plot in the future of biowarfare that we may be facing some day down the line. Kind of the stereotypical terrorist figures. Also switches points of view frequently which is a plus to keep the story interesting. A relatively quick read.
Paul Weiss
Great science, scary scenario, weak thriller!

Daniel Kalla's Pandemic is an entertaining, informative and frightening thriller that undoubtedly ought to be taken seriously as an uncomfortably plausible scenario in real-life. But, as a fictional thriller, frankly, it simply isn't innovative enough to make the cut as a first-rate thriller. Good quality, yes, but not with that dynamite rock-em, sock-em, non-stop page-flipping urgency that separates the men from the boys in the thriller section of
Sep 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
In Daniel Kalla's Pandemic, this thriller debut packs a bunch with a cross of a medical thriller and a military thriller combined in real life true topics in today's world. Dr. Noah Haldane was a doctor for the World Health Organization and travels the world, when there's a major epidemic health concern. While he dealt with his wife's affair and confused sexuality, he also wanted to be there for his young daughter Chloe. At the news of an outbreak in the Gansu province of China, he joins the ...more
Brandie Lea Slicer
Sep 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
This was a pretty good book / medical thrill on par with something I could see happening today. Quite scary really! Sometimes it was a bit difficult to keep up with the cast of characters & the medical terminology but I held my own & stuck to the core cast. However, trying to remember who they all worked for and in what capacity could be quite a chore. It didn't help that I had a cold while reading this book ! Ok, so Haldane (who works for WHO) is one of the leading characters, his work ...more
Jun 08, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I eventually gave up, a little more than 3/4 of the way through. Long drawn out conversations about technical things. Too much about the personal lives of characters when it really does nothing but stop the story dead in its tracks every time the characters' personal lives are mentioned. Too much backstory for characters that just end up dying. The story actually introduces, names and follows one character for only a few moments of read time before he dies.
The story moves very slowly. People
Henri Moreaux
This was a reasonable book, but I felt the inclusion of some unnecessary elements held it back a little, for example there's a large swath dedicated to how Noah Haldane's wife has had a lesbian affair with a woman down the road because he was away from home a fair bit, and they're all angsty and struggling with their marriage. This seemed entirely superfluous, I didn't feel it added much in the way of depth to the character and would have preferred the pages were spent dedicated to the issue at ...more
Clara Dillaha
Jan 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
The way Kalla wrote the story switching between the points of view of the people spreading the plague and the doctors trying to contain it, made me want to shake the doctors by the shoulders and tell them what I knew, in a good way! The story was engaging to me, as a medical professional and the science was accurate. Unfortunately, I felt as though some characters were difficult to connect with and unrealistic. It is fiction after all, though, and I enjoyed the story. I found the ending to be ...more
I really wanted to like this book

The premise was good. I wanted to like this book. I'll say that there was some good story telling, excitement and anticipation. But the number of significant typos for a professionally published book! Where was the copy editor? Also, the author's descriptions of both the men and the women were stereotypical and trite.
Elizabeth Tai
Apr 24, 2018 rated it liked it
3.5 stars. It had the stereotypical Muslim terrorist, medical crusader with a troubled family life and a terrorism plot involving germs. Still, it tries hard to make the characters less of a caricature, so we have the terrorist with a conscience, a ringleader who discovers too late that what he did was not going to be beneficial for humankind ... I liked these touches.
Mar 13, 2020 rated it it was ok
The medical aspects of this book were decent. Honestly, the personal drama is hilariously bad. I kind of loved it. I liked the main male and female characters enough but they were so generic together that the ending was eyeroll-worthy.

My favorite part was when the Egyptian cop exposed the evil plan and then yeeted himself out the window. That was bad ass. The rest of the book was just okay.
Jun 30, 2018 rated it liked it
Another fine disease disaster by Daniel Kalla. There is just the right amount of believability in his writing that you start thinking its only a matter of time until someone actually does this or this actually happens. Wonderful strong characters, quick dialog and intense scenes. An excellent read.
Lisa Manke
Jul 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Picked up by accident, a happy surprise of a book.

Crichton-esque in its storytelling with a fast pace and nonstop action.

Tiny tiny font nearly did me in but otherwise a good one. Take it on vacation. Bring a surgical mask.
Lenie Gervero
Oct 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I read this a while back. Terrifying because it could possibly happen.
Hazel Rainfall
Jul 10, 2018 rated it it was ok
This book was well written but had too much cursing in it to be enjoyable for me. I found the basic ideas of the story line laughable implausible, though the book was intriguing.
Amy Webster-Bo
Apr 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
not as good as I hoped love this kinda book, but reminded me to much of robin cook books
Mar 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
A little dated but a fairly good book.
Not sure why i decided to read it now as ot has been sitting in my kindle for a few years

Funny, no one hoarded any toilet paper.
Jun 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Love me a good pandemic. The love story between the doctors was superfluous and I could have done without it. Just stick to the mayhem!!
Jun 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
All about a viral pandemic. Geeky science included.
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Born, raised, and still residing in Vancouver, Kalla spends his days (and sometimes nights) working as an ER Physician in an urban teaching hospital.

The idea for his first medical thriller, PANDEMIC, sprang from his clinical experience in facing the SARS crisis of 2003. He has written five science thrillers and or medical mysteries, delving into themes and topics as diverse as superbugs, drug

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Dr. Noah Haldane (2 books)
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