Last week, I introduced some of you to one of my favorite Podiobooks, Quarter Share. This week, a review of a bestselling book that started life the same way, Infected.
I will warn you now, this is a very, very violent book. And you’ll like it that way.
Infected by Scott Sigler
Perry Dawsey is 6-foot-5, 265 pounds of angry ex-linebacker. He knows all too well that if he doesn’t control his quick temper, people get hurt. Through constant focus, he has locked his violent past away in the deep dungeons of his mind.
The infection changes everything.
Strange microscopic parasites tap into Perry’s bloodstream like tiny little vampires. They start as bright orange blisters, but soon take the shape of triangular growths just beneath his skin. The “Triangles,” as Perry calls them, try to control their host by manipulating hormone levels and flooding his body with neurotransmitters — imbalances of which cause paranoia, schizophrenia and excessive aggression. As Perry begins a desperate battle to cut the Triangles out of his body before it’s too late, his self-control dissolves into raging, murderous madness.
Well, I don’t know if it’s a high point, but I can’t use chicken scissors any more and when my wife wields them, I run screaming from the kitchen like a little girl.
The end of Dawsey’s storyline seemed a bit anti-climactic, but fortunately, there’s a sequel.
Originality: I don’t read a lot of horror, but I’ve never read any book that takes you this far “inside” the terror. Deeply disturbing, but you can’t put it down. 5/6
Story: Again, profoundly disturbing, but an incredible page-turner. 5/6
Imagery: They will burn into your brain, never to leave you. 5/6
Characterization: You’re not sure whether you should root for Perry Dawsey, but you are fixated on his plight as well as the hunt with the supporting cast. 4/6
Emotional Response: I shuddered more than once reading this book and damn near threw it away (see High Point) in horror. But I kept reading it. What does that say about me as a person. 5/6
Editing: Very good. I got this originally as a Podiobook (then titled Infection) and it was good then. A professional editor and publisher really cleaned the book up and made it even better. 4/6
Overall: This is a truly frightening and engrossing book. Avoid it at all costs if you’re the least bit squeamish. 5/6
Total Score: 38 out of 42