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Patient Zero

Patient Zero

4.5 4
by Jim Beck

"I love a good zombie yarn..." -- Jonathan Maberry, NY Times bestselling author of Rot & Ruin and the Joe Ledger series

Bob has a brain tumor.

Not to worry, though. He's the prime subject for a new procedure involving nanotechnology. Microscopic robots are introduced into his body and effectively destroy the tumor. Job well


"I love a good zombie yarn..." -- Jonathan Maberry, NY Times bestselling author of Rot & Ruin and the Joe Ledger series

Bob has a brain tumor.

Not to worry, though. He's the prime subject for a new procedure involving nanotechnology. Microscopic robots are introduced into his body and effectively destroy the tumor. Job well done.

But there's a catch. A virus lying dormant for years inside him is manipulated by the tiny machines and causes Bob to die and then be brought back to life as a zombie.

His transformation into one of the living dead is slow, first appearing as a skin rash and advanced arthritis. And if that wasn't bad enough, the virus has mutated and Bob is slowly losing control. Now, no one is safe -- not the neighborhood pets, his co-workers, even his son.

Told from the point of view of the zombie virus itself, this story of a single father, his son, and a zombie outbreak is a cautionary tale of advanced medical science and where it might lead us.

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Jim Beck
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Meet the Author

Jim Beck is a freelance writer who resides in Burbank, California with his loving wife, adoring son, and cute little dog named Monster. He has written for the Cartoon Network show Pink Panther and Pals, produced a short zombie film and independent feature film, and is currently awaiting the release of his first direct-to-DVD film.In his spare time, he enjoys watching movies, having open-heart surgery (though it was not his choice), playing video games, and searching the universe hoping to find more spare time.If you have any corrections, compliments, insults, or are a king in need of getting money into the United States, you may contact the writer at blackroostercreations@earthlink.net. He promises to answer each and every e-mail he receives.Please visit blackroostercreations.com for more details on his upcoming projects.

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Patient Zero 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous 10 days ago
I thoroughly enjoyed this book!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
BookStacksOnDeck More than 1 year ago
I LOVED this book so much! Bob seems like a nice guy that's been down on his luck and you pretty much instantly like him. He goes under a few different treatments for a brain tumor, but nothing works. His doctor recommends one last thing they could try - an advanced and new kind of treatment involving nanotechnology. The treatment has a bad reaction with an old dormant virus within Bob, which causes him to slowly transform into a zombie. Also, the story is told from the point of view of the virus. I really enjoyed this book from the moment I started reading. Then it just got even better from there with the symptoms of the slow transformation and how the outbreak started. If you like zombie books, you will love this one - Highly recommend this great read! Go buy it now!
SPRcom More than 1 year ago
Just when I thought that the zombie subgenre had reached a saturation point, Jim Beck comes along with Patient Zero and proves that a clever idea can take an old idea and provide fresh flesh for hungry readers. No pun intended. Beck spins a simple story that is veined with strands of Frankenstein and moments of tenderness and melancholy. Bob Forrester is a man with a problem¿a brain tumor. The recipient of an experimental procedure, he finds himself facing a second chance at life. Within just a short time, however, that new life becomes a mixed blessing, with side effects that are strange, slowly creeping upon him silently and, occasionally, violently. Before long, Forrester comes to the conclusion that readers have anticipated from the opening page: his flesh is dying and he is becoming a zombie. It¿s a story that we¿ve read before¿whether it¿s caused by a virus, voodoo magic, or an alien microbe, and Beck makes no effort to surprise the reader here. Uniquely, though, Beck makes the zombie virus a central character in the story. It¿s a twist that not only allows the reader a larger view of the outbreak, but shifts the conflict from an externally driven conflict to a more relationship focused story about Forrester and his son. Yes, there are moaning zombies, shotguns and baseball bats, guts and brains. On the other hand, there is also the close relationship between Bob Forrester and his son, the only thing holding them up. It¿s that bitter-sweet relationship, strengthening even as Bob recognizes the weakening of his flesh towards putrescence and impending zombie-hood, that makes Patient Zero more than a blood soaked horror. The tender relationship between the two waxes over the course of Bob¿s treatment and subsequent demise, even as the world is falling apart around them. Yet, just as Beck takes us the final tragic scene, we are left wondering¿what does the future hold? Is there hope? Beck¿s Patient Zero is perhaps best considered, then, as this: a study of two men¿a father and a son¿as they face the horrific and the tragic. The twist he uses to narrate is clever, if less than subtly executed. As his first novel, Beck seems to be searching for the right voice to tell his story. The tone is conversational, almost too relaxed, and at times I found myself wondering how a scene might change with a more developed plot, or with a more complex conflict. If Patient Zero is lacking in any respect, it is only in Beck¿s colloquial tone, giving even the most nefarious character an almost laid back tone rooted in the pop culture references of our time. And perhaps that works: the novel does take place in the present. It¿s a risky effort, though, and it denies Patient Zero the opportunity for relevance outside of middle America. In the end, though, Beck is true, wittingly or not, to the source of the original zombie¿Frankenstein. His creature is human, but losing his humanity. He feels and needs the love of those around him, even while he hurts and threatens them. He is a monster, with one step in this world and one in that of the dead, the living dead. It is a tragedy more than a horror, and that in itself is worth the read.