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No treatment. No cure. No hope

Once it seemed as though penicillin and other antibiotics had won humanity a lasting victory over harmful bacteria. But now hardier bugs, resistant to most common classes of antibiotics, are emerging-with potentially catastrophic consequences.

When Dr. Catalina Lopez of the Center for Disease Control first receives a report of a lethal new "superbug" immune to all known antibiotics, she realizes that she has a ...

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No treatment. No cure. No hope

Once it seemed as though penicillin and other antibiotics had won humanity a lasting victory over harmful bacteria. But now hardier bugs, resistant to most common classes of antibiotics, are emerging-with potentially catastrophic consequences.

When Dr. Catalina Lopez of the Center for Disease Control first receives a report of a lethal new "superbug" immune to all known antibiotics, she realizes that she has a major health crisis on her hands. An ultra-resistant form of group A strep is spreading like wildfire throughout hospitals and emergency rooms in Seattle and the Pacific Northwest. Doctors, lacking any effective way to combat the infection, can do nothing but stand by and watch their patients die, one after another.

Dr. Graham Kilburn, an infectious disease specialist in Vancouver, is one such doctor. Desperate to contain the spread of the new superbug, he joins forces with Lina Lopez as they try to find some way to halt the growing epidemic.

What they don't realize is that shadowy forces are conspiring to spread the disease on purpose-and they will stop at nothing to avoid exposure.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
Emergency room physician-turned-novelist Daniel Kalla's newest medical thriller should come with a dispenser of antibacterial liquid soap. After readers finish Resistance, the terrifying story of a "superbug" intentionally unleashed on an unsuspecting public, the first thing they will want to do is thoroughly wash their hands!

When a new, deadly superbug (a form of antibiotics-resistant bacteria that lives, breeds, and spreads within hospitals) begins to kill people in major Pacific Northwest cities, Catalina Lopez of the Centers for Disease Control realizes quickly that she has a potential epidemic on her hands. With the help of people like infectious disease specialist Graham Kilburn and detective Seth Cohen, the outbreak is tracked to a drug user in Vancouver who injected what she believed to be cocaine and heroin given to her by an anonymous dealer. Further investigation reveals a connection between the bug and a groundbreaking new antibiotic being tested in hospitals in the area. Would a pharmaceutical company that has invested millions of dollars in a drug create and unleash killer bacteria that only their drug could treat?

Kalla has been compared to medical thriller icon Robin Cook for good reason: Resistance (as well as his debut novel, Pandemic) is powered by years of real-world experience in hospital emergency rooms and a comibination of expert insight and speculation. It also features a cast of impeccably crafted characters, pedal-to-the-metal pacing, and enough jaw-dropping plot twists to satisfy the most demanding reader. Ready or not, welcome to the post-antibiotic era… Paul Goat Allen
From the Publisher
"Daniel Kalla joins a select list of doctors who know how to keep you up all night with their writing."—Nelson DeMille, New York Times bestselling author on Pandemic

"Dan Kalla expertly weaves real science and medicine into a fast-paced nightmarish thriller-a thriller all the more frightening because it could really happen."—Tess Gerritsen on Pandemic

"Very much in the Michael Crichton school of cutting-edge scientifically rooted thrillers. Pandemic is an absorbing, compulsive thriller, the sort of book you could stay up too late reading. I'd advise against that, however. With all the bugs going around, you're going to need your immune system functioning at full strength . . . ."—The Vancouver Sun

"A totally compelling novel, one of those rare thrillers that lays out a scenario that is not only possible, but terrifyingly probable."—Douglas Preston, author of The Codex on Pandemic

"Kalla's ripped-from-the-headlines plot and confident command of both language and medicine make this sobering book a pleasure"—Publishers Weekly on Pandemic

"Pandemic starts fast and never lets up on the suspense . . . Kalla juggles the many narrative balls easily, manages to insert a little romance, puts his protagonists in plenty of danger and drives his complex plot to a rousing climax."—The Edmonton Journal

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780765354396
  • Publisher: Tom Doherty Associates
  • Publication date: 5/2/2006
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 400
  • Product dimensions: 4.17 (w) x 6.71 (h) x 1.09 (d)

Meet the Author

Daniel Kalla is the internationally bestselling author of Pandemic and Rage Therapy. He is an emergency room physician in Vancouver, British Columbia.

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Read an Excerpt


Portland, Oregon

He eased the stolen black Ford Explorer to a stop behind the Dumpster in the dismal alley. When he switched off the ignition, the interior lights brightened and he caught a glimpse of his own reflection in the rearview mirror. There was nothing familiar about the face staring back. With three days’ worth of stubble, spiked black hair and frosted tips, and the thick chain and heavy cross dangling from his neck, he could have been eyeing a total stranger. Someone he would have despised at first sight.

Dennis Lyndon Tyler—or at least that was who his out-of-state driver’s license purported him to be—appreciated order in his life. Normally fastidiously clean-cut, he favored a dark jacket and tie for his assignments. Simple. Dignified. Nondescript. But now he dressed like a walking neon sign in a shiny blue track suit with reflective white Nikes and the gaudiest Rolex knockoff he could find. And he couldn’t shake his low-grade nausea from the stench of his own cheap cologne.

Tyler peeled his eyes from the mirror. A job is a job, he repeated the familiar mantra in his head. The money is right. Focus.

He stepped out of the car. As he instinctively smoothed out the creases in his jacket, his hand brushed over the hard metal strapped under his right sleeve. The gun’s contact brought a welcome sense of familiarity.

Walking the alleyway, he deliberately infused his normally crisp stride with the cocky spring he had noticed in the others he’d studied. After three weeks of posing, the gait had nearly become second nature. He could maintain it without trying.

This was the fifth alley he had covered tonight. Yet another of the many gathering spots for the lowest of Portland’s lowlifes he’d visited in the past few days. They congregated here, huddling in the doorways and other nooks and crannies among and between the rundown buildings, preoccupied with their sole reason for existence. Drugs.

He’d chosen well this time. This alley writhed with junkies. Male. Female. Some alone, others clustered in groups. A number of them looked young enough to be in junior high school. A few lay on their sides or sat propped up by a wall, their glassy eyes open and pinpoint pupils staring out at nothing. Several fumbled at the tourniquets on their elbows or at their partners’ necks, searching for that elusive vein to inject whatever chemicals they could force into their bloodstreams. Though Tyler had become accustomed to the activity, his guts still churned from the stench of the Dumpsters and the smothering sense of desperation and need.

As he passed by, he caught the eye of a number of junkies who recognized his unofficial uniform. A tall thin man with a ravaged face and matted hair swaggered up to him. He stopped directly in Tyler’s path and, without a word, nodded to him.

Tyler eyeballed the addict up and down. His cheeks were hollow, and his scraggly pale arms bore telltale scabs crusted over. Still, Tyler decided that the man didn’t quite fit his need. He shook his head. When that didn’t budge the junkie, he narrowed his gaze and curled his lip into a slight sneer. That sent the man scuttling like a beetle back into the shadows of the nearby building.

He repeated the same silent dance with four or five other alley dwellers. He recognized a few potential candidates but passed them over too, remembering that he had been instructed to choose only the absolutely sickest-looking of the junkies.

Near the end of the alley, where the light of the main street glowed like the opening at the end of a tunnel, movement caught Tyler’s eye. He turned to see an emaciated woman leaning against a Dumpster. She struggled to push herself upright before staggering out to meet him.

The woman was so gaunt that Tyler couldn’t pinpoint her age closer than a range of twenty to forty. She had scruffy jet-black hair and thick chapped lips. Despite the drizzly spring night, she wore a torn black miniskirt and tank top, which exposed a bony sunken abdomen and legs so skinny that they didn’t taper from thighs to ankles. The Aztec sun god tattooed on her shoulder appeared asymmetrical like a painting whose canvas had shrunken underneath it. A pink, rhinestone-studded handbag hung off the same shoulder. Studying her large gray eyes and delicate nose, Tyler imagined that once she might have been pretty. Now, with skeletal features and weeping sores on her chin and cheek, he found her repulsive.

Her lips parted into a forced, toothy smile that accentuated the broken incisor on the upper right side of her mouth. “You got anything for me, hon?” she asked in a throaty voice that was meant to sound seductive but struck Tyler as pathetic. He breathed in the scent of her nicotine-rich breath. It mingled with her stale, diseased aroma.

She was the one.

He tilted his head and smiled. “What you looking for, gorgeous?”

“Beggars can’t be choosers,” she said with a giggle and swayed unsteadily on her feet, like a tree hit by a sudden gust. Then her smile vanished, and resolve hardened into the deep ridges of her face. “If you gotta know, I’m an old-fashioned girl. None of this crystal meth shit. I like eightballs.”

An old-fashioned girl. Tyler suppressed a smirk. A month ago, he didn’t know what eightballs were, but in the past few weeks he had dispensed several powdery packets of the cocaine and heroin used to concoct the cocktail, which seemed to be a favorite among the most hard-core users. Without a word, he fished in his track suit jacket pocket and pulled out two separate wads of silver foil. They looked as if they had been hastily packaged, but Tyler knew better. He had selected them earlier from the briefcase full of perfectly matching packets that had arrived along with his instructions. Then he had taken the time to grind them with a foot into the hotel bathroom’s floor to produce an even more tattered and authentic looking result.

Tyler held the silver foil out in front of him in his open palm. When the woman reached for his hand, he closed it shut around the foil. She jerked her hand back as if it had been slapped. She stared up at Tyler with a look of sudden desperation. Her hand fumbled inside her purse but emerged empty. “I got jack right now for cash, but I got something else …” Tyler knew where she was heading but he kept his fist closed and watched her expressionlessly.

“We can get a room around the corner.” She forced her eyes wider and slowly ran her tongue along her upper lip until it touched the crusting sore at the edge. “And I do everything there. Everything.” She pointed to his fist and gyrated her bony hips slightly, causing her to stumble a step. “Know what, baby? I’m going to give you the fuck of the century in trade,’kay?”

The thought intensified Tyler’s nausea, but he maintained his poker face. Focus. He opened his fist. “Tonight’s your lucky night,” he said. “Since I’m new to these parts, I’m offering samplers. This one’s on me.”

The woman’s hand shot out and grabbed the packets with surprising deftness.

Tyler watched as she jammed the foil deep into her handbag. “You got your own rig?” he asked, referring to the syringe and needle she would require.

“Yeah, yeah, in here,” she said distractedly, snapping up the purse as if he might revoke his offer at any moment.

“What’s your name?”

“Carol,” she sniffled. She shuffled on the spot, looking desperate to leave.

“Carol,” he repeated, amused by the middle-class blandness of how it sounded under the circumstances. “Next time, you’ll know who to see about buying your stuff, right?”

“Oh, absolutely, you’re my new man, baby,” she said, not bothering to ask his name. Then she swiveled on the spot and lurched on her pumps back to the Dumpster.

Tyler watched until she disappeared into a crack in the building behind the alleyway. He had no idea what was in the packets he had just given her, but he had little doubt that it was more than just heroin and cocaine. And from the substantial deposit to his numbered Grand Cayman account, he inferred that it was going to dramatically shorten what little was left of Carol’s pointless life.

Running his hand along the sharp and ridiculous spikes of his highlighted hair, all traces of Carol vanished from his consciousness. He turned and headed back for his car.

A job is a job, he said to himself. The money is right. Focus.

Copyright © 2006 by Daniel Kalla

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 6 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2013

    Very good book

    I really enjoyed this book. There is plenty of suspense and a plausible plot. I read other book written by this author and each was very good.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 10, 2012


    If u know the location of the dynasty please say where here. Please.....

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2012

    Med cat den


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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 19, 2012

    HIghly Recommended

    It kept you on the edge of your seat and really provided a scary scenario.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 21, 2006

    A thrilling tale that will remind sub-genre readers of Dustin Hoffman¿s Outbreak

    In Seattle Dr. Catalina ¿Lina¿ Lopez works for the Pacific Northwest Epidemiological Intelligence Service, a branch of CDC. She joined the agency dreaming that she would heroically stop an outbreak of avian flu or some other epidemic. Instead she sits in public forums fielding tedious questions from pseudo-intellects still fantasizing that her disease prevention escapade will soon come along with her hopes of getting assigned to the headquarters one day.------------- However, Lina will soon learn that you better watch what out for what you wish for as reports from Vancouver and Portland claim a new 'superbug' that is deadly and totally immune to antibiotics has arrived. Soon hospitals throughout the region claim this superbug spreads faster than anything they ever seen and nothing seems to prevent it from moving on. Lina realizes that this is not just a health crisis this could be a pandemic worse than 1918. People are dying in bunches including health providers. Soon many in the health fields fear going to work and stop showing up, exacerbating the crisis. In Vancouver, Dr. Graham Kilburn, who has seen the impact from the onset, joins Lina in a desperate battle to develop a RESISTANCE to this PANDEMIC disaster while some unknown adversaries want to prevent the doctors from finding the elixir.------------ This is a timely exhilarating medical thriller that is at its best when the story line focuses on the impacts of the superbug and the efforts to find a means of prevention. When the plot spins into an action-packed conspiracy thriller it gains excitement but also loses the essence of what makes the tale so good. Still this is a thrilling tale that will remind sub-genre readers of Dustin Hoffman¿s Outbreak.---------------- Harriet Klausner

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 27, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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