I recently finished one of the best books I have read in a while. I like a good apocalypse as much as the next person - I'm a fan of The Walking Dead, for example - but those types of stories are easy to over-dramatize and throw in lots of violence or dystopia for the sake of violence or dystopia. But to have a good apocalypse tale that reveals the heart of humanity, while not showing it completely rotten or saccharine sweet, is a wonderful and unexpected change.
The book opens with a famous actor, Arthur Leander, having a heart attack on stage while playing King Lear. Jeevan Chaudhary, a budding EMT and member of the play's audience, leaps on stage to do what he can to help. Caught up in this small but important drama to them, little do they know that a deadly flu is taking over the city of Toronto. Soon, one person's medical crisis becomes irrelevant when faced with a medical crisis for the entire world.
The book leaps backwards and forwards in time, so the reader slowly learns the reasons and backstory of what led the characters to the opening scene. The transitions are smooth instead of jarring, and the beauty of the tale is woven out of these time shifts into a bittersweet story that gives the reader pause, without becoming maudlin or pandering.
I won't reveal more for fear of spoilers, but this book was very hard to put down at all. I would definitely recommend it.
I read a lot - depending on my writing schedule, I can usually read about a book a day. Some of the books are fantastic and I would love to recommend to everyone - some, not so much. Either way, I thought I would share a few thoughts on what I'm reading at the moment.