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Particles in the Air: A Dr. Mallory Hayes Medical Thriller Reviewed by Norm Goldman of Bookpleasures.com
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Norm Goldman --  bookpleasures.com Norm Goldman -- bookpleasures.com
For Immediate Release:
Dateline: Montreal, QC
Tuesday, November 1, 2022

 

Author: Dr Jenna Podjasek

Publisher: Bancroft Press

ISBN: 978-1-61088-537-9

If you enjoy readingspine-chilling medical thrillers, this one is a doozy!

With her debutnovel, Particles in the Air, Dr. Jenna Podjasekdraws heavily upon her background as an allergist/immunologist andher encounters dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic. The result is ashocking narrative involving biological terrorism. 

The yarn's prologue placesreaders at Mission Beach, San Diego, where the most devastatingtsunami in US history has recently struck, taking the lives of manyAmericans. To house the displaced, the Federal Emergency ManagementAgency (FEMA) has set up a camp, employing the Army to providemedical aid. We ultimately learn the catastrophe killed 2,214, withthousands still missing.

Over the next fewchapters, we are introduced to Dr. Erik Lindgren, a gifted scientistworking in his laboratory in Malmo, Sweden. Erik is greatly respectedin the scientific community for his groundbreaking research in genetherapy.

Unfortunately, Erik hassome tormenting personal issues. He is hooked on gambling and isindebted to a shady character who threatens to kill him if he doesn’tpay back his enormous debt.

If that is not enough, hiswife Ada, ten years his junior, leaves him after he assaulted her. 

Aida notifies Erik’sboss of the altercation, and Erik is fired. All his ground-breakingresearch conducted at the lab will stay the company’s property. Afinancial arrangement between Erik and Ada quickly materializes,where she will receive a generous sum.

Erik now finds himselfwithout employment and in a precarious financial situation. He mustdiscover a path out of his bleak status. 

He sells his soul to thedevil and forms an ominous alliance with Islamic militants. With hisextensive scientific knowledge, Erik comes up with a plan to producea lethal pathogen that would obliterate millions of Americans.

He offers to sell his ideato Islamic radicals for a significant sum, telling them he wouldproduce a lethal poisonous contagious agent. The zealots embrace hisinvitation and are resolved to strike while the enemy is vulnerable.

The displaced person campin San Diego furnishes them with an ideal opportunity where the viruscould be transmitted, which soon or later would be circulatedthroughout the USA.

To achieve theirobjective, three of “Allah’s soldiers” are to be sent to thecamp to do this “extraordinary work.” They are trained how tovaccinate themselves and told that the vaccine would insulate themfrom the ill effects of the virus while allowing the transmission toothers.

The story shifts toAtlanta, Georgia where we meet Dr. Mallory Hayes employed by TheCenters for Disease Control and Prevention. Mallory’s researchinvolves the Marburg virus that precipitates a devastating humaninfection with a clinical picture similar to Ebola.

When word gets outconcerning the San Diego catastrophe and the horrid living conditionsin the FEMA temporary relocation camp, Mallory is swiftly dispatchedto the camp. She realizes the prospect of widespread contamination atthe camp, where some extraordinary pathogens are appearing.

While in the camp, Mallorystumbles upon a young Arab, Habib, who had recently appeared fromSweden with his twin brother, Omar. Unfortunately, while at the camp,Omar dies from complications of pneumonia. Originally, there was nohint of biological terrorism or that Habib and his brother werelinked to the virus’s dissemination. 

Mallory and her colleaguesface the colossal challenge of pinpointing the pathogen and stoppingit from flowing from the camp to the rest of the USA.

The strength of thenarrative is how Podjasek integrates our prevailing circumstanceswith Covid-19 with an alarming scenario, but not as far-fetched as itmay seem. In addition, with strong storytelling mastery and in smallgestures and poignant reflection, she effectively makes Mallory’sstruggles part of her character rather than dwelling on the societalfallout.

Thrown into the yarn isMallory’s disintegrating relationship with her boyfriend. 

Podjasek has crafted atimely and haunting debut that will keep you asking, could thisindeed happen? 

Follow Here To Read Norm's Interview With Dr. Jenna Podjasek

 Norm Goldman of Bookpleasures.com

News Media Interview Contact
Name: Norm Goldman
Title: Book Reviewer
Group: bookpleasures.com
Dateline: Montreal, QC Canada
Direct Phone: 514-486-8018
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