The commander of the Army virology unit that battled Ebola in The Hot Zone--and current director of Special Pathogens at the CDC--teams up with the bestselling co-author of Mind Hunter to chronicle his extraordinary thirty-year career fighting deadly viruses.
Currently the head of Special Pathogens at the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, C. J. Peters has been on the front lines of our biological war against hot viruses for three decades in South America, the U.S., and Africa. In Virus Hunter, he recounts his lifelong battle against these deadly and invisible agents--and the all-too-often equally dangerous bureaucratic turf wars that have at times escalated the conflict and exacerbated epidemics. From investigating Venezuelan equine encephalitis and Bolivian hemorrhagic fever to containing Ebola in Reston, Virginia, and the deadly hantavirus in the Southwestern U.S., Peters offers a fascinating array of stories about the clash between biology and bureaucracy--and the threat emerging viruses pose to our species.
Written with bestselling co-author Mark Olshaker (Mind Hunter), Virus Hunter is a first person memoir by one of the leading virologists in the Ebola outbreak and a dramatic complement to the mega-bestseller The Hot Zone.
As past chief of the Disease Assessment Division at the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases and as the current chief of the Viral Special Pathogens Branch at the Centers for Disease Control, Peters has enjoyed an impressive career studying and combating deadly viruses around the world, from various South American hemorrhagic viruses to the Ebola virus and those causing Rift Valley fever. Indeed, Peters was the officer in charge of containing the Ebola outbreak in a Reston, Va., primate facility chronicled in The Hot Zone. With such a wealth of material to draw upon, Peters's autobiography is fascinatingat least when it focuses on science and epidemiology. When it detours into his non-professional personal life and the numerous divorces and remarriages of his colleagues, it is plain tedious. The final two chapters detail, with frightening specificity, preparations undertaken to combat chemical and biological threats posed by Iraq during the Gulf War, the very real possibility of chemical and biological terrorism and the increased likelihood of deadly epidemics arising from our ongoing disruptions of natural ecosystems. Written with the aid of Olshaker (MindHunter), this book's prose is overblown at times, but its portentous message is always perfectly clear. Major ad/promo; author tour. (May)