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As I raced through all three of the Viral Misery books, I couldn't put them down. The characterization, plotting, action and imagery (a billion rats streaming on the freeway, eating everything in their path and allusion to Leiningen Versus the Ants) are great. Attention to detail, whether construction, logistics, animal population dynamics.. Some of the language is off-putting, obscene sexual imagery, everyone screams, shouts or shrieks, no one simply "says" and what is a "startle". There are some other problems. Yes, Wilson Combat makes excellent pistols and long arms but nothing to orgasm over. One of the characters puts a thousand rounds of .45 ammunition through the love of his life, a Wilson 1911 pistol each day for ten days. I know a bit about pistols and I've spent a lot of time shooting them. That's not possible. A friend, now deceased, fired 150 rounds of hardball .45 ammunition through his 1911 one day. His forearm swelled to the size of a baseball bat with inflamed tendons. He waited a week as the swelling went down and did it again. Twice more like that and he had permanently damaged his arm. The idea of shooting a thousand rounds of .45 in a day is absurd. I also know about nuclear weapons, more than the Watsons. In the book, the main character claims that the US military made the nuclear weapons arsenal unusable by breaking open a few weapons and spreading around highly radioactive materials to contaminate the other weapons for thousands of years. In fact there are no "highly radioactive materials" in nuclear weapons outside of milligrams of tritium, gaseous unstable hydrogen. The stuff in a bomb becomes "highly radioactive" only after the bomb goes off. Beforehand the Plutonium and Uranium are very long lived, not very radioactive materials. They constitute an internal hazard (a bad one) if dust is inhaled but U and Pu dust would wash away in days to months or under the urging of a firehose (assuming you don't have to file an environmental impact statement). Still, I thoroughly enjoyed the books a look forward to more.
I purchase each Thomas Watson book as soon as it is available. His ability to combine detail, passion, violence, values, romance and well developed characters in a thoroughly engaging stew transcends the normal standard of pulp fiction. The combination of the unexpected with the meticulous development of his worlds is extraordinarily well done. He is a master storyteller.
Only a couple of criticisms. His books could be a bit leaner as they can be exhausting as well as entertaining. Pages of bridge construction methods, senseless chapter long dialogues that are more vulgar and less interesting than the need to be and countless encounters with entitled, squalling children would not be missed- at least by me. That having been said-looking forward to his next publication.
I really enjoyed the first two books in this series. The third book has a good story line. I feel as if the characters deviated a great deal from their personalities developed in the first two books. The screaming, yelling. swearing and arguing, around the kids was out of character. Moving far away from the patients and desire to build the kids up that occurred in the first two books. Making Arthur, Wendy, Samantha and Shawn acting like little brats, than adults.
The only thing that keeps this from a 5 star rating is Wendy! I just don't understand why she would have to outman all the men around her. And strangely for me I do believe that this is the weakest book of the series this far, and I have read the first 2 (again) in preparation for this one.
Another excellent installment in the Viral Misery series by Thomas A Watson. Can't wait until the next Book is available for purchase. I really hope this series eventually goes to Audible. I would buy without hesitation.