cover image Outbreak


Robin Cook / Author Putnam Publishing Group $4.98 (366p) ISBN

Despite inept prose and an overload of synthetic crises, Cook's new novel will probaby be popular with fans of Coma, Godplayer and his other thrillers. The heroine is gutsy, naive Dr. Melissa Blumenthal of the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta. Sent to report on an exotic, killer virus that is claiming victims in every state, the young doctor learns more than she should for her own safety. There are clues to a scheme by the prestigious members of the Physicians Action Congress to control the medical profession by planting the virus, which wipes out personnel and patients, in health-care centers; strangely, these are the only locations where the disease has been breaking out. Confiding her suspicions to a colleague at CDC, Melissa is betrayed and has to fight for her life repeatedly, performing feats that defy belief. Finally, she is free to embrace the suitor who proves himself worthy and let the law deal with the criminals in PAC. (February 16)