Sunday, September 28, 2008

The Hot Zone and Richard Preston in Literary Journalism

SACRAMENTO, Calif., USA - The Literary Journalism class at CSU, Sacramento will be discussing Richard Preston's book, The Hot Zone, again Monday night after going through parts of the tome last week.

The Hot Zone is about the Ebola virus, sort of. It's also about the potential of the disease, human reactions and how close the world might have come to disaster.

It also ponders the question: Will the world face Ebola again?

And when.

Preston, a writer for The New Yorker magazine has written three books about viruses: The Hot Zone, The Cobra Event, and The Demon in the Freezer. But branched out with a recent book, called The Wild Trees about giant redwoods and sequoias. Sorry about that 'branched-out' pun.

The Cobra Event was fictional, but was so well-researched - and written - that it prompted President Bill Clinton to spend many millions of dollars to get the nation ready for the bio-terror scenario that Preston suggests could happen.

Preston was interviewed last year by Jon Stewart for the Daily Show. And like all Jon Stewart interviews, well worth watching.