Posts Tagged ‘books’

In 2016, USAID (The United States Agency for International Development is the United States Government agency) reported that nearly 75 percent of all new, emerging, or re-emerging diseases affecting humans at the beginning of the 21st century are zoonotic (i.e. originated in animals).

 

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There is talk among the scientific community that in the near future, humanity may face another Spanish Flu-level pandemic (the Spanish Flu H1N1 influenza virus killed 50-100 million in 1918 and infected 500 million worldwide)…or even something more extreme that threatens humanity’s survival.

Besides the Spanish Flu, the more recent history of pandemics, including and especially the H1N1 Swine Flu outbreak in 2009, inspired our new release novel Silent Fear (which goes on sale on Halloween on October 31: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B075HRYTVC/ ). We worked closely with a medical laboratory scientist/microbiologist to get all the medical aspects of the virus in our novel correct. And soon discovered microbiology is a fascinating, and sometimes scary, world underneath the surface…a place where viruses form at the micro level before sometimes spreading worldwide and threatening all of us.

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On the TheBlackVault.com website, in an article headed ‘USAID’s Pandemic Influenza and Other Emerging Threats (PIOET) Program‘, they mention: “Notable reminders of how vulnerable the increasingly interconnected world is to the global impact of new emergent diseases include HIV/AIDS, severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), the H5N1 strain of avian influenza, and the 2009 pandemic H1N1 influenza virus. The speed with which these diseases can emerge and spread presents serious public health, economic, and development concerns.”

The article continues, mentioning how USAID’s “Pandemic Influenza and Other Emerging Threats (PIOET) Unit supports two major lines of work: H5N1 Avian Influenza, and Emerging Pandemic Threats. H5N1 Avian Influenza: Since 2005, USAID has strengthened the capacities of more than 50 countries for monitoring the spread of H5N1 avian influenza among wild bird populations, domestic poultry, and humans, to mount a rapid and effective containment of the virus when it is found, and to help countries prepare operational capacities in the event a pandemic capable virus emerges.”

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So what’s looming in the world right now, virus wise?

Deadly Bird Flu In China Evolves, Spreads To New Regions http://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2017/09/07/549069924/deadly-bird-flu-in-china-evolves-spreads-to-new-regions

This article mentions:

“This past year China had the largest outbreak of a deadly bird flu since the virus was first detected in March 2013.

For the past five years, China has had annual waves of H7N9 outbreaks that peak around January and February.

During the 2017 season, the country reported nearly the same number of cases as all four previous years combined, researchers at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report Thursday. The virus cropped up in more geographic regions. And it showed signs of evolving in ways that cause concern.

As NPR reported in April, the virus has picked up mutations that make it more deadly in poultry and less susceptible to antiviral treatments. “Our research shows it can kill all the chickens in our lab within 24 hours,” virologist Guan Yi told NPR.

H7N9 isn’t your run-of-the-mill bird flu. H7N9 is “the influenza virus with the highest potential pandemic risk,” the CDC writes in the journal Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

In people, H7N9 can cause a severe form of pneumonia and progress into septic shock and multiorgan failure. “We know of only a small number of people who presented with influenza-like symptoms and then recovered without medical attention,” the World Health Organization says.

During the 2017 outbreak, the Chinese government reported 759 cases of H7N9. There were 281 deaths — about a third of those infected. By comparison in 2016 and 2015, the country reported 123 and 226 cases, respectively.”

 

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But wait, there’s more…Oh no!

CNN: The big one is coming, and it’s going to be a flu pandemic https://amp.cnn.com/cnn/2017/04/07/health/flu-pandemic-sanjay-gupta/index.html

Article Excerpts:
  • “Unlike seasonal flu, pandemics occur when a completely new or novel virus emerges
  • Gupta: Developing and deploying a pandemic flu vaccine just 24 weeks faster, would save many lives

(CNN)Experts say we are “due” for one. When it happens, they tell us, it will probably have a greater impact on humanity than anything else currently happening in the world.

And yet, like with most people, it is probably something you haven’t spent much time thinking about. After all, it is human nature to avoid being consumed by hypotheticals until they are staring us squarely in the face.

Such is the case with a highly lethal flu pandemic. And when it comes, it will affect every human alive today.

Pandemic flu is apolitical and does not discriminate between rich and poor. Geographical boundaries are meaningless, and it can circle the globe within hours. In terms of potential impact on mankind, the only thing that comes close is climate change. And, like climate change, pandemic flu is so vast, it can be challenging to wrap your head around it.

When most people hear “flu,” they typically think of seasonal flu. No doubt, seasonal flu can be deadly, especially for the very young and old, as well as those with compromised immune systems.

For most people, however, the seasonal flu virus, which mutates just a little bit every year, is not particularly severe because our immune systems have already probably seen a similar flu virus and thus know how to fight it. It’s called native immunity or protection, and almost all of us have some degree of it.

Babies are more vulnerable because they haven’t been exposed to the seasonal flu and older people because their immune systems may not be functioning as well.

Pandemic flu is a different animal, and you should understand the difference.

Panˈdemik/: pan means “all”; demic (or demographic) means “people.” It is well-named, because pandemic flu spreads easily throughout the world. Unlike seasonal flu, pandemics occur when a completely new or novel virus emerges. This sort of virus can emerge directly from animal reservoirs or be the result of a dramatic series of mutations — so-called reassortment events — in previously circulating viruses.

In either case, the result is something mankind has never seen before: a pathogen that can spread easily from person to defenseless person, our immune systems never primed to launch any sort of defense.”

 

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In our new release novel Silent Fear (A novel inspired by true crimes), we have created a fictional scenario inspired by this microbiology and worked closely with a scientist who guided us on our medical sub-plot. Within a murder investigation in a university for the Deaf in London, England, a deadly flu virus (H7N7) outbreak occurs, resulting in the university being quarantined from the outside world.

In the sealed-off university, we then explore in detail a chaotic virus management story where not only does the virus continue to infect more Deaf students and claim more lives, but a serial killer remains at large and terrorizes those who manage to survive the deadly virus.


Silent Fear Kindle cover

And just today, in an unusual coincidence that sounds all too similar to Silent Fear, news has broken out in the last few hours that four hospital wards in the Devon, England have been forced to close due to an outbreak of the norovirus.

Wards closed as outbreak of norovirus confirmed at North Devon District Hospital http://www.devonlive.com/news/devon-news/wards-closed-outbreak-norovirus-confirmed-690373

13:26, 27 OCT 2017

ARTICLE EXCERPTS:

People are being asked not to visit the hospital if they have had, or been in contact with someone who has had, diarrhoea or vomiting in the last 48 hours, unless their visit is essential.

Four wards at North Devon District Hospital were forced to close due to an outbreak of the vomiting and diarrhoea bug norovirus.

Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust is asking people not to visit the hospital if they have had, or been in contact with someone who has had, diarrhoea or vomiting in the last 48 hours, unless their visit is essential.

Norovirus is a highly contagious gastro-intestinal virus, which causes diarrhoea and vomiting.

Following the spread of this virus in the North Devon community, there is an increase in patients being admitted to NDDH with norovirus.

There have been confirmed cases of norovirus at NDDH this week and four wards were closed to new admissions as a precautionary measure.

The Trust is asking people not to visit the hospital if they have had, or been in contact with someone who has had, diarrhoea or vomiting in the last 48 hours, unless their visit is essential.

When in hospital, people should keep their hands clean using soap and water or the gels provided, and encourage others to do the same.

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Norovirus is a very contagious virus that can infect anyone. You can get it from an infected person, contaminated food or water, or by touching contaminated surfaces.

If you would like to follow up on this virus outbreak, and other outbreaks around the world, click on this link: http://www.globalincidentmap.com/beta/disease-outbreaks-map 

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Check out Silent Fear on Amazon (it published Halloween, Oct 31, but can be pre-ordered now):

 

See you on the flip side, guys (if you survive the pandemic AND the serial killer in SILENT FEAR!)

James Morcan

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The Kindle ebook version of our thriller-horror SILENT FEAR (A novel inspired by true crimes)  will be launched on October 31 and we thought it appropriate this coincides with Halloween. It’s a scary read.

Our friend and collaborator-in-crime Lisa Norris — @ernorris — kindly designed this artwork (below) to commemorate the occasion, and we reckon she nailed it!

 

SF Halloween poster

 

Pre-orders for the Kindle version of Silent Fear  are open now  via https://www.amazon.com/dp/B075HRYTVC/ — Order now and it will be auto-delivered to your Kindle at Halloween.

The paperback’s available already via https://www.amazon.com/dp/0473408120

Prepare to be scared!

 

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Membership of our contentious Underground Knowledge discussion group on Goodreads.com has topped 1000, making it one of the liveliest and fastest growing groups on the popular Amazon-owned literary site for readers and authors.

There’s no doubt the group’s growth and activity are testament to its freedom of speech policy. Anything goes…and members aren’t slow to exploit that! No subject is off limits. The fact that this group has no rules may also have something to do with its popularity.

 

A small sample of some of the group’s more controversial discussion threads follows:

Was 9/11 a false flag attack and ‘Inside Job’? 54% of you voted YES

Satanic Elite Child Hunting Parties

Are aliens visiting Earth or not????

Is the Islamic State (IS/ISIS) another invention of the West?

Conspiring to quash alternative medicines

Mozart & shattering the inborn genius myth

Evidence for scientifically advanced Ancient civilizations?  

Restructuring capitalism

November 22, 1963. Dallas, Texas.

The overpopulation myth (part 1)

Extensive biblical revisions made by the Romans

And last but not least…

What really happened to the dinosaurs? And how come the Bible doesn’t mention dinosaurs? (A satirical discussion thread from deep inside the Underground mental asylum – DISCLAIMER: consult with your shrink before reading and post at your own risk!)

Our polls are also popular. Some of the results make for interesting reading – including our latest poll, which asks: Do you believe the official story of Osama Bin Laden’s death was real or staged? (So far, 49% of poll respondents say it was staged)…

To visit our poll thread go to: https://www.goodreads.com/poll/list/142309-underground-knowledge—a-discussion-group?type=group

 

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The Underground Knowledge discussion group is open to everyone! All you need is an enquiring mind, an interest in the world we live in and a desire to learn or to uncover “underground knowledge” on important issues of our times. This group is also for like-minded people to discuss the controversial topics explored in The Underground Knowledge Series, which includes the non-fiction books Genius Intelligence, Antigravity Propulsion, Medical Industrial Complex and The Catcher in the Rye Enigma.

Our members include scientists, journalists, moms and dads, historians, doctors, whistleblowers, authors, bankers, teachers, intelligence personnel, housewives, students, Army vets, pacifists, conspiracy theorists, the odd redneck and the Average Joe. All viewpoints welcome!

To visit the group, or better still to join the group and have YOUR say, go to: https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/142309-underground-knowledge—a-discussion-group

 

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Dan Brown, Suzanne Collins, Stieg Larsson, Frank Herbert and Umberto Eco are among the bestselling authors whose books feature in a reader popularity list on Goodreads.com, the influential, Amazon-owned literary site for readers, authors and publishers.

Goodreads: Book reviews, recommendations, and discussion

Goodreads’ membership, which tops 30 million and rising, has been invited to vote for, or add books (either non-fiction or fiction titles), that contain “underground knowledge” or little-known facts about important issues. The list is inspired by the bookshelf of the Goodreads discussion group Underground Knowledge.

 

To view the Top 100 ‘Underground Knowledge’ books go to: https://www.goodreads.com/list/show/82849.Underground_Knowledge#25393264

 

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Book review:

A Walk in the Rain  –by Udai Yadla

★★★★★ Exquisite!

This reader discovered ‘A Walk in the Rain’ is an oft-used title, gracing the covers of a number of books. However, Udai Yadla’s version must surely stand alone. It’s truly unique and beautifully written. Exquisite!

Aptly subtitled ‘A journey of love and redemption,’ it is exactly that. A romantic, often intense, occasionally delicate and always gripping tale of a love found and lost, and an unforgettable journey of self-discovery.

The writing is tight but not rushed, the characterization is excellent and the storyline grabs you from the prologue right through to the last page. A must-read! Sterling Gate Books

Synopsis:
Love is poison that kills you. Love is elixir that keeps you alive. An unreciprocated love keeps you alive, but kills every day.

Heartbroken Sunny lives a reclusive life, trapped in the past, living in his memories. He has no complaints about his life, but refuses to embrace the present.

Saloni is a prostitute who is desperate to earn money by any means. She does not care about exploiting others to fulfill her purpose.

Fate unites the loner and the prostitute to embark on a life changing journey of retribution and self discovery.

Lovelorn Sunny turns misogynistic after Sandy, the only girl he loved walks away from his life, unannounced. He suffers painful solitude for almost two decades with the relentless haunting of her thoughts. A distressed friend Imran, vows to change his life forever. A surprise planned for his birthday turns into a tragedy that claims the life of his dear friend, triggering a series of unbelievable events. As Imran gets killed by a stranger, Sunny’s calm life suddenly turns into a turbulent storm. With nothing left to live for, vengeance becomes his ultimate mission. His reluctant alliance with a prostitute to trace the killer sets him onto a nerve racking adventure of life and death.

Both are bound to a common goal with different motives, but destiny has its own motive.

A walk in the rain is an intricate tale of intense emotions, driven by hair raising twists and turns.

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Goodreads.com, the world’s largest site for readers and book recommendations, has announced its nominees for the 2014 Goodreads Choice Awards — the only major book awards decided by readers.

Categories

Fiction

Big Little LiesThe Bone ClocksLandline

Mystery & Thriller

I Am Pilgrim (Pilgrim, #1)The Secret Place (Dublin Murder Squad, #5)The Gods of Guilt (Mickey Haller, #5)

Historical Fiction

Some LuckThe Invention of WingsThe Miniaturist

Fantasy

Up From the Grave (Night Huntress #7)The Book of Life (All Souls Trilogy, #3)Prince of Fools (The Red Queen’s War, #1)

Romance

The Will (Magdalene, #1)Maybe SomedayCrashed (Driven, #3)

Science Fiction

Ancillary Sword (Imperial Radch, #2)The Flight of the Silvers (Silvers, #1)Lock In

Horror

Bird BoxThe Girl with All the GiftsThe Rhesus Chart (Laundry Files, #5)

Humor

Shame on You (Fool Me Once, #1)William Shakespeare's The Empire Striketh Back (William Shakespeare's Star Wars, #5)Yes Please

Nonfiction

Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the EndNo Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Surveillance StateWhat If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions

Memoir & Autobiography

My Salinger YearRedefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much MoreSmoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory

History & Biography

Savage Harvest: A Tale of Cannibals, Colonialism, and Michael Rockefeller's Tragic Quest for Primitive ArtAstoria: John Jacob Astor and Thomas Jefferson's Lost Pacific Empire: A Story of Wealth, Ambition, and SurvivalKilling Patton: The Strange Death of World War II's Most Audacious General

Business Books

The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy AnswersThe Promise of a Pencil: How an Ordinary Person Can Create Extraordinary ChangeHooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products

Food & Cookbooks

The Oh She Glows Cookbook: Over 100 Vegan Recipes to Glow from the Inside OutThe 21-Day Sugar Detox Cookbook: Over 100 Recipes for any Program LevelNom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans

Graphic Novels & Comics

Locke & Key, Vol. 6: Alpha & Omega (Locke & Key #6)Seconds: A Graphic NovelManga Classics: Pride & Prejudice

Poetry

Chasers of the Light: Poems from the Typewriter SeriesI Wrote This For You: Just the WordsYou Can Make Anything Sad

Debut Goodreads Author

The Emperor's Blades (Chronicle of the Unhewn Throne, #1)Sweet Addiction (Sweet Addiction, #1)The Good Girl

Young Adult Fiction

Love Letters to the DeadI'll Give You the SunDon't Look Back

Young Adult Fantasy

White Hot Kiss (The Dark Elements, #1)Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass, #3)The Winner's Curse (The Winner's Trilogy, #1)

Middle Grade & Children’s

The Blood of Olympus (The Heroes of Olympus, #5)A Snicker of MagicThe Crossover

Picture Books

The Scraps BookThe Girl and the BicycleThe Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend

The organizers settled on 15 different nominees in 20 categories ranging from Fiction to Fantasy to Food & Cookbooks to Young Adult Fiction? Instead of relying on experts or judges, Goodreads analyzed statistics from the 275 million books added, rated, and reviewed on Goodreads in 2014.

A message from the organizers:

“We’re so excited to congratulate all of the nominees! There are some epic match-ups in this year’s list. In Best Memoir, the riveting true stories range from Esther Earl, the inspiration for teen bestseller The Fault in Our Stars, to North Korean defector Jang Jin-Sung. Mystery & Thriller has heavy hitters, with Stephen King going against “Robert Galbraith” (a.k.a J.K. Rowling). In History & Biography, it’s basketball god Michael Jordan versus an unlikely opponent, President Calvin Coolidge. Best Fiction, one of our most-watched categories, is anyone’s game, with debut authors like Nadia Hashimi and Mira Jacob ready to take on established masters like Marilynne Robinson, Haruki Murakami, David Mitchell, and Margaret Atwood. And double props to our double nominees, who include Roxane Gay, Gene Luen Yang, and B.J. Novak!

“Of course, with hundreds of thousands of books published in 2014, no nominee list could cover everything. We also accept write-in votes during the Opening Round to ensure that you can vote for exactly the book you want!

“You have three chances to vote. The Opening Round lasts until November 8. Vote now to make sure your favorite books make it into the Semifinals (November 10 – 15) and Finals (November 17 – 24).

“To read more go to: https://www.goodreads.com/blog/show/470-announcing-the-nominees-of-the-2014-goodreads-choice-awards

 

Happy reading! –Lance & James

 

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Here’s an eye-catching tweet – featuring our historical adventure novel strategically placed on a beach somewhere in Fiji and posted by a Twitter follower – that caught our eye. “I’d rather be in Fiji,” according to @TripFiction.
As TripFiction says at TripFiction.com, “See a destination through an author’s eyes, novels/books set in over 1000 locations.”
This unsolicited endorsement of Fiji: A Novel (The World Duology, #2) follows the novel’s recent nomination by TravelersToday.com as one of the ‘Top 10 Books to Read While Traveling’. The book came in just ahead of The Da Vinci Code and hot on the heels of Anonymity.
Fiji: A Novel (The World Duology, #2) is available via Amazon as a trade paperback or Kindle ebook: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0057YCZM0/
World Odyssey (The World Duology, #1) is available as a Kindle ebook:http://www.amazon.com/World-Odyssey-Duology-1-ebook/dp/B00HHVOMO0/

…and The World Duology (World Odyssey / Fiji: A Novel) is also available as a Kindle ebook: http://www.amazon.com/World-Duology-Odyssey-Fiji-Novel-ebook/dp/B00HMQRMFG/

Product Details  Product Details Product Details
Happy reading! –Lance & James
And feel free to follow us on Twitter at: @SterlingGate
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