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The Cure
     

The Cure

4.3 3
by Jack D. Hunter
 

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Suppose a cure for cancer was finally discovered, a cure that could save the lives of millions—and render much of today’s medical and pharmaceutical industry obsolete? How far would the world’s movers and shakers go to control this miraculous panacea—or destroy it?

Controversial oncologist Dr. Anson Lunt dies in a suspicious plane crash,

Overview

Suppose a cure for cancer was finally discovered, a cure that could save the lives of millions—and render much of today’s medical and pharmaceutical industry obsolete? How far would the world’s movers and shakers go to control this miraculous panacea—or destroy it?

Controversial oncologist Dr. Anson Lunt dies in a suspicious plane crash, just as one of his researchers develops what appears to be a “magic bullet” against all forms of cancer. Before his mangled body is even cold, powerful forces are conspiring to seize control of the top-secret cure, either to reap the potential riches at stake—or else to suppress the discovery entirely. Industrial espionage, blackmail, and murder are only a few of the ruthless strategies employed in the no-holds-barred battle for the Cure.

A gripping tale of cutting-edge medicine and international intrigue, The Cure exposes the dark underside of the modern medical establishment.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Jack D. Hunter writes like a million."—Los Angeles Times

"Hunter writes with impressive authority [and has] the God-given skill of making you avidly turn the pages."—The New York Times

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780765306487
Publisher:
Tom Doherty Associates
Publication date:
07/01/2003
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
368
Product dimensions:
5.82(w) x 8.52(h) x 1.23(d)

Read an Excerpt

The Cure


By Hunter, Jack

Tor Books

Copyright © 2007 Hunter, Jack
All right reserved.

ISBN: 9780765345622

1.
 
Morton tried to feel bad about the death of Anson Lunt, his old friend and benefactor, but it didn't work.
Despite an inexplicable but handy ability to forecast events and read the intentions of others, he wasn't much given to the metaphysical. His years of hardship and professional climbing had armed him with the notion that if it couldn't be seen, felt, tasted, heard, smelled, or measured, it was mainly irrelevant. He enjoyed ghost stories as much as anyone and had a live-and-let-live tolerance for the world's religionists, but his daily life was essentially consumed by the need to manage the existence he'd been given, with little thought for whatever might lie beyond. Death? Merely another abstruse law of a mysterious universe, to be dealt with and conformed to when it came into play.
But Anson Lunt had had a somewhat spookier, transcendental view of life and death. His decades as a physician and research scientist had convinced him that the human being was an extraordinary, animate computer, designed by a superior intelligence and programmed to perceive and act within certain parameters of a greater reality. He'd told Morton several times that he looked forward to dying, believing as he did that it would introduce him to a whole new level of experience.
So what was to feel bad about?
The local TV news lady, all mascara, tilelike teeth, and lacquered hairdo, wasn't so sanguine, her face andvoice remaining determinedly tragic and funereal. Even so, it took no mind reader to detect her private delight over the dreadful occurrence that had made her day.
Behind her, Zieglersville Airport was a cheerless prairie, darkened by low, fast-moving clouds and a drizzle that wanted to be rain. Except for the yellow slickers worn by the gaggle of Federal air safety people--stooping, plucking, and bagging like peasants in a bean field--it was a study in gray-on-gray, a monochromatic figment of Hell.
"Dr. Anson Lunt, renowned Zieglersville cancer specialist, and pilot Bill Rooney died here this morning," the woman singsonged, "when their twin-engine turboprop plane crashed while landing after a flight from New York. Federal authorities are on the scene, searching for clues as to just what caused the accident. So far as is known, there was only one witness to the plane's final moments. He is Albert Margolis, an employee of the Rooney Air Taxi Service."
Margolis, a small, dour man with restless eyes and the air of wariness that comes with a life of folly and desperation, came on-screen.
"Tell me, sir," the woman burbled, "just what you saw here this morning."
"Ain't awful lot to tell," Margolis said, self-conscious. "I was out on the apron, catching a smoke, and Rooney's turboprop came out of the east, its lights blinking. It made a kind of downward turn and came in toward the runway from the south. Then, while it was still pretty high up, settling toward the touchdown zone, props idling, lights on bright, the nose was all of a sudden pointing straight down, and the motors started screaming. There was a kind of screwy wobbling, and the plane went in and blew all to hell out there on the south boundary. Damnedest noise I ever heard, I'll tell you. By then I got myself together and ran for the phone and dialed nine-one-one."
"So then what--"
Morton blew a little raspberry, tapped the button, and cut her off in midquestion. Aloud he said, "Way to go, Anson. You did a great job with your life, and it was a pleasure knowing you. Have a wonderful trip."
He hated himself when he got sentimental like this. He beamed down to the real world by glancing at his watch.
The call should be coming by now.
Literally from birth Morton had this ability to read people and their intentions--an intuition thing. Its first piece of work was to warn him to tighten his buns, because, sure as hell, the midwife was about to slap them good. Probably then, too, he had learned that foreknowledge is okay, but evasion is better. While insight could put him on alert, it wouldn't ease the sting when life held him by the heels and actually registered a hit. The trick was to see the hit coming and not be there when it arrived.
When he transferred to Kenwood Junior High School, for instance, he knew from the minute they first traded glances that Billy Mahler, the honor student, athlete, and pet of all teachers, would try to make his days miserable. It was nothing specific--just an inner awareness that Billy saw him to be some kind of threat.
But what to do about the hassles he knew would follow?
Morton's solution was juvenile CIA stuff. First, he paid Billy's kid sister, Nancy, one candy bar a day to report on whatever she knew of her brother's comings and goings. Next, he got a Polaroid of Freddo Toomey diddling little Janey Fenwick in the cloakroom, a coup which turned Freddo, one of Billy's schoolyard henchmen, into a pretty good overall stoolie. With information flowing in from these sources, Morton was able to second-guess Billy and deflect or neutralize his sneaky little plots, most of the time making Billy, the would-be screw-er, the screw-ee. It worked so well it became Morton's lifelong policy to backstop his sharp eyes and sensitive hunch mechanism with bribery and espionage.
He was smiling at the memories when the phone rang.
"Hello."
"It's Margolis, Mr. Morton."
To the Social Security and IRS people, Margolis was a retired railroader who augmented his pension by working as the night watchman at Rooney Air Taxi Service. To Morton, he was an oily, repulsive son of a bitch whose true income was in the six figure range, thanks to the blackmail he laid on reputable citizens he had secretly photographed doing disreputable things in certain Mertz Highway motels. Morton knew about his little game, and Margolis and his motel-owner collaborators knew he knew. So to buy his silence they got vocal, and together made up the most zealous squad in Morton's platoon of informants.
"What's up?"
"You see the news? About the crash out at the airport?"
"Who hasn't?"
"Well, I got some computer disks left in the airport office by that nutty doctor, Lunt, before he left for New York last night."
"What do you mean--left in the office?"
"He was waiting in the office while Bill preflighted the plane. He had this locked tote bag with property of lunt biochemical laboratory stenciled on the side. He put it in Bill's wall locker. That's where passengers park things they don't want to take on a flight. I happened to be looking through the window, and I saw him put it there."
"And when you were alone you took a peek, right?"
"I like to work out with the picks. You never know when you might have to diversify, I always say."
"So what's on the disks?"
"Beats the hell out of me. Lot of scientific stuff. Numbers, signs. Like that. I understood them like I understand my exwife. Seeing as how your company is a competitor of Lunt Biotech, I thought you might want to see for yourself what's on them, so I made the copies."
"You're trying to sell them to me?"
"Well, yeah. Man's gotta live."
"Something else you've got to do. You've got to understand that it's not Bradford Chemicals Corporation's policy to buy stuff left lying around by careless competitors."
Margolis did some whining. "You're not even interested?"
"It's unlikely that Lunt could have put anything on those disks I'd want to see or should legally be allowed to see. So turn them in to their rightful owners. You might get a reward."
"Can we talk--?"
"This conversation is finished. Call me when you have something I can use."
 
Copyright 2003 by Jack D. Hunter


Continues...

Excerpted from The Cure by Hunter, Jack Copyright © 2007 by Hunter, Jack. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Meet the Author

From Model T Fords and biplanes to space shots, laser surgery, and microwave pizza, Jack Hunter has been there, done that. Born in 1921 in Hamilton, Ohio, he was raised in Kenmore, NY, schooled in Ridley Park, Pa., and, after graduation from Penn State with a degree in journalism, he served as a U.S. counter-intelligence agent in World War II. He subsequently worked as a newsman in Chester, Pa. and Wilmington, Del., then as a congressional staffer in Washington, and as a corporate PR executive in Charleston, W.Va., in Bridgeport and Newtown, Conn., and again in Wilmington.

Even as a boy, Hunter wanted to be a novelist, but the exigencies of war, peace, and family intervened, and he had to wait until he was 41 to write his first, "The Blue Max." It was a hit, became a million-copy seller worldwide and a major movie, and was followed by 15 other novels, most of them derived from his experiences in war, political intrigue, and corporate life. In later years, he and his wife, Shirley, settled in St. Augustine, FL, where he continues to write and pursue his "third career" as a professional aviation artist with an international clientele.

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The Cure 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Jumps at a catnip mouse
Dawson59 More than 1 year ago
Not bad. Not bad at all. Interesting concept. Our heroine, Mila Groso has built a thriving pharmaceutical research facility with her long time schoolmate and friend, Susan. Over the years, the company has produced many vital and important drugs and technologies for society as a whole. The one area they are not allowed to work in, as dictated by the current religiously controlled government, is re-animation of any type. Those found delving into this arena will be quickly extinguished from their post and existence. Mila has no problem adhering to the mandates until tragedy strikes when her husband and daughter are murdered. Will Mila continue to follow the dogma of the government, or will she secretly conduct experiments to revive the dead? That’s the story in a nutshell. The pros. Mr. Hunter does a good job in keeping the action moving forward with a good relaxing clip.  The cons: When it comes to action scenes, I look for believability, and at times, I felt Mila was encountering, situations above and beyond her physical capabilities.  The futuristic scenarios are well planned out and developed. Vey nice. I found it a bit redundant being reminded why Mila is doing what she’s doing. I believe some of those passages could be eliminated without deterring the story at all. I found some minor editing issues that did not detract from the story, but when time permits, it wouldn’t hurt to go back and straighten them out. Who will enjoy this read? Those who enjoy a good futuristic who done it tale. Well done Mr. Hunter 3.75 Stars
Guest More than 1 year ago
Jack D. Hunter has written several best-sellers, all of which have recently been reissued by Replica Books. His last offering was ¿Slingshot¿ originally published in 1995. It¿s been a long dry spell, but Hunter has finally done it again. And ¿The Cure¿ (from Tor-Forge Books) is his best yet. It has already started a buzz on the Internet; people are reading it, people are buying it, and people are talking about it, with good reason. What if someone discovered a cure for cancer which is truly miraculous -- one that could also prevent cancer? The formula would be worth millions -- but where there¿s big money, there¿s somebody trying to steal it. ¿The Cure¿ is the tale of a massively Machiavellian sting centering around the miraculous cure and its ownership. The scientist who discovered The Cure dies mysteriously in an airplane crash. Suddenly dead bodies are turning up all over the sleepy suburb of Zieglersville, and one man always seems to be somehow involved. But nobody can prove it, and everybody has a different opinion of him. Some say he¿s a rat¿s rat. Others insist he¿s the world¿s sweetest teddy bear. Is he guilty or victim? Hunter is noted for his meticulous research, and this book is no exception. He maneuvers around medical terminology with ease, devising stings and counter-stings, deals and counter-deals, all within an entirely believable high-tech, big-bucks pharmaceutical world. But he¿s never without his sense of humor and quirky ability to twist the English language to his own ends (a ¿sklurt¿ of oil, for instance). In short, ¿The Cure¿ is a must-read for Hunter fans, espionage fans and anybody looking for a believable and entirely absorbing tale of larceny, lechery, and licentiousness. Highly recommended.