Description of Craig DiLouie’s THE INFECTION1
A mysterious virus suddenly strikes down millions. Three days later, its victims awake with a single purpose: spread the Infection. As the world lurches toward the apocalypse, some of the Infected continue to change, transforming into horrific monsters.
In one American city, a small group struggles to survive. Sarge, a tank commander hardened by years of fighting in Afghanistan. Wendy, a cop still fighting for law and order in a lawless land. Ethan, a teacher searching for his lost family. Todd, a high school student who sees second chances in the end of the world. Paul, a minister who wonders why God has forsaken his children. And Anne, their mysterious leader, who holds an almost fanatical hatred for the Infected.
Together, they fight their way to a massive refugee camp where thousands have made a stand. There, what’s left of the government will ask them to accept a mission that will determine the survival of them all—a dangerous journey back onto the open road and into the very heart of Infection.
The best part about apocalyptic survival stories is the rogue, make-your-own-rules mentality the characters get to embody. The worst part is the reality behind why they now have this mentality. Everyone they know is dead, missing, or has been murdered (possibly at their very own hands).
Unfortunately, The Infection has much more of the latter than the former. There are at least half a dozen characters, and most of them are sad or damn-near suicidal — actually someone in their party killed himself before we, the reader, join the story.
The main character might be Ethan, the math teacher who barely has the will or ability to live.
Or, it could be Sarge, the Sargent who has a dark past and even darker future.
But, maybe it’s Wendy, a lady cop who has to prove her worth to everyone– especially herself.
There’s also, Annie, Todd, The two Soldiers, Reverend Paul, some faux sheriff guy… I think that’s everyone.
The number of characters wouldn’t that noticeable except everyone gets at least one chapter AND one flashback which makes it hard to really bond with anyone’s story. Even the monsters were ever changing and the logic behind this was laid out as the best guess of a musing priest rather than something more tangible.
The story itself isn’t bad at all. It’s an engaging (at times) tale about the struggle to survive day to day life as a survivor. There’s a reminder that runs throughout the story that Surviving is vitally different from Living.
Personally, the jumping around and the under-explaining and the random details that I didn’t have then suddenly did… After a while it started to feel like a chore and if it hadn’t been an e-book I’d have skipped ahead or just skimmed.
Meh. I finished it, but only begrudgingly because I’d already started it… Read it if you really like military characters and MANY points of view. There were some deep, interesting moments, but not enough. And Damn, this story was a downer.