cover image Survivor Song

Survivor Song

Paul Tremblay. Morrow, $27.99 (320p) ISBN 978-0-06-267916-1

A highly contagious rabies-like virus that turns its victims into homicidal maniacs drives this standout thriller from Stoker Award winner Tremblay (The Cabin at the End of the World). The state of Massachusetts is under quarantine, hospitals are overwhelmed, and people are panicking as authorities struggle to maintain order. After Natalie Larsen, who’s eight months pregnant, is bitten by an infected neighbor in an attack that kills Natalie’s husband, her pediatrician friend, Ramola Sherman, attempts to get her to a hospital for a vaccine before it’s too late. When this proves unsuccessful, the two women embark on a desperate odyssey across a nightmarish eastern Massachusetts landscape in hope of reaching a safe place to deliver Natalie’s baby. Along the way, they’re threatened by rabid animals, roving rabies-infected victims, and frightened local militias. Their journey becomes even more hopeless as the first symptoms of Natalie’s rabies begin to appear and Ramola must confront a decision she dreads to make. The vividly drawn characters of Ramola and Natalie give the story an uncommon emotional intensity. This is genuinely hard to put down. Agent: Stephen Barbara, Inkwell Management. (July)