The Genius Plague – David Walton

Adding in some science fiction to my October reads!

Thanks to Prometheus Books for the advanced copy in exchange for my honest review.

THE GENIUS PLAGUE by David Walton (released October 3rd, 2017)

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My Thoughts: 3.5/5 stars!

Typically I’m not a sci-fi reader, but when I saw the premise for David Walton’s THE GENIUS PLAGUE, I was intrigued. This is one of those science fiction novels that feels like it could actually happen. Mother Nature is capable of more than we can comprehend, and a killer fungal organism infecting people seems all too real.

This story is about two brothers and their roles in uncovering a conspiracy surrounding this new fungus discovered in the Amazon. Paul Johns is a mycologist and while in Amazon he stumbles across this disease that has been spreading throughout the area. This fungal organism is infecting the local populations and is making it’s hosts vastly more intelligent. While there, Paul contracts the infection and the question becomes, is the host the master in this symbiotic relationship, or is it being manipulated by the fungus?

Paul’s brother, Neil, is just starting his job at the NSA. He begins to notice an interesting for of communication being used near the Amazon. He worries about his brother after seeing the changes in him. While Paul is convinced this is the next step in human evolution, Neil is completely committed to and ready to destroy this fungal organism before it spreads any further.

I really enjoyed this book. It had a quicker pace to it and keeps your interest. Walton did a great job creating Paul and Neil as characters. Both were complex and I liked the relationship between the two of them. They felt authentic and real. When it comes to the fungal infection portion of this novel, it was clear to me this was well-researched. Anything that has to do with nature and potentially the end of the world or a world-wide infection is unnerving. Especially when it’s something that’s in the realm of possibility.

If you’re a big sci-fi fan, then this will be perfect for you! I only took off some from the 4 star rating because of the ending. I felt that there wasn’t as big of a climax like I was hoping for with how intense this read was. Definitely not saying it wasn’t a fitting end, though!

Overall, I think this was very well-written with some memorable characters. It definitely makes you wonder, would a fungal organism be able to infect the masses and potentially take control over us? It’s an unnerving and terrifying thought that something so small could manipulate your brain and turn you into a zombie-like being.

 

Check back later this week for the #allthebookreviews collective thoughts!

–Jess

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