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Bird Flu Books
 

Faster Than a Speeding Bullet
A new book warns that the next bird flu epidemic could strike fast:

The next flu pandemic will wing its way through the world at break-neck speed, hitching a ride on unsuspecting air travellers, speeding through train tunnels, and racing through shorter distances on bicycles, according to the author of a new book.

"Every year, one billion people travel by plane and in so doing provide viral hitchhikers unprecedented opportunities," Calgary-based journalist Andrew Nikiforuk told CTV.ca.

...He argues in his new book "Pandemonium" that our health is being threatened by biological invaders moving at unprecedented speed.

Unlike past pandemics, the next one will break all speed records, he writes.

October 24th, 2006

 

New Bird Flu Book

National Public Radio has an interview with Dr Marc Siegel, author of the newly-published Bird Flu : Everything You Need to Know About the Next Pandemic.

 

“Bird Flu” takes on the issues that are injected with a sense of panic and dread, as many parts of the world have grown to fear the spread of a deadly influenza outbreak in recent years.

 

That outbreak, says Siegel, is a distinct possibility. But he urges those who may be at risk to trust in reason -- and ignore the hype -- in judging the risks they face.

 

In making his case for an honest appraisal of those risks, Siegel cites progress in vaccine work and improved living conditions world-wide as two improvements that should make any epidemic far less deadly than that of 1918.

 

And Siegel urges practical changes in policy -- in Asia and in the United States -- that he says will make the world better prepared to resist a pandemic.

February 3rd, 2006

 

A Brilliant Jeremiad

I noted a couple of weeks ago that The Monster at Our Door: The Global Threat of Avian Flu by Mike Davis got a scathing review at Tech Central Station (under the headline, “One Flu from the Cuckoo’s Nest”). But now the New York Times describes it as a “brilliant, concise jeremiad.” They say that controversy sells books. It should do well.

November 28th, 2005

 

A Bird Named Enza

Where are all the bird flu books? I asked last week. I got an email from Dawn Meier in Sheridan, Oregon:

 

I have had a "bird flu" book out since 2003, before the current pandemic scare. Mine is not full of advice, but a poignant story of one town and how they coped with the influenza of 1918. Where are all the bird flu books? Just waiting to be published. 

 

I have tried to peddle my book since 2003 and finally self-published “A Bird Named Enza.” 

After I sold a few hundred books, I put it online for free.

 

My only accomplishment from this book is one high school here in Oregon that is reading “A Bird Named Enza” as part of their English curriculum. I go speak to the kids two times a year. These high school students are at least well aware of current events by reading my book. 

 

I have been trying in the past year to find a publisher that will publish my book at a more reasonable price than self-publishing on-demand prices of $12.95. I want more schools to be able to afford to purchase the book. So the books are out there, just not being considered for publication.

 

You can read “A Bird Named Enza” here.

November 19th, 2005

 

Where Are All the Bird Flu Books?

Some writers get lucky. John Barry spent seven years writing The Great Influenza: The Epic Story of the Deadliest Plague in History, about the 1918 pandemic. At times, he says, he got so frustrated with the project that he felt like quitting. It was published last year, and, soon after, the world started talking about a new flu pandemic. When President George Bush went on vacation in August he announced that Barry’s book was one of those he was taking to read. Sales are buoyant.

 

Publishers are quick to spot trends and to rush out books to meet them. So it would be normal to expect a flood of new bird flu books. Where are they?

 

My guess is that this is such a fast-moving story – new developments appear almost daily, as this blog and others attest – that publishers fear any book will quickly be out-of-date....continue reading Where Are All the Bird Flu Books?

November 14th, 2005