When the SARS virus broke out in China in January 2003, Karl Taro Greenfeld was the editor of Time Asia in Hong Kong, just a few miles from the epicenter of the outbreak. After vague, initial reports of terrified Chinese boiling vinegar to purify the air, Greenfeld and his staff soon found themselves immersed in the story of a lifetime.
Deftly tracking a mysterious viral killer from the bedside of one of the first victims to Chinas overwhelmed hospital wardsfrom cutting-edge labs where researchers struggle to identify the virus to the war rooms at the World Health Organization headquarters in GenevaChina Syndrome takes readers on a gripping ride that blows through the Chinese governments effort to cover up the disease . . . and sounds a clarion call warning of a catastrophe to come: a great viral storm potentially more deadly than any respiratory disease since the influenza of 1918.
About the Author
Karl Taro Greenfeld is the author of seven previous books, including the novel Triburbia and the acclaimed memoir Boy Alone. His award-winning writing has appeared in Harper's Magazine, The Atlantic, The Paris Review, Best American Short Stories 2009 and 2013, and The PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories 2012. Born in Kobe, Japan, he has lived in Paris, Hong Kong, and Tokyo, and currently lives in Pacific Palisades, California, with his wife, Silka, and their daughters, Esmee and Lola.
A work of riveting, relevant journalism...a dexterous approach that recalls Randy Shilts’s AIDS history And the Band Played On.
-The Village Voice
A taut scientific thriller, well told.
Greenfeld moves quickly, often conjuring a thriller, and his personal and professional involvement give his account...a unique perspective.
Greenfeld... ponders the nature and purpose of viruses as he paints a gloomy picture of what we...can expect next.
-Booklist (starred review)
“This book is a parable for our times.”