Into the Inferno by Earl Emerson
It's a tribute to Earl Emerson's narrative skill that he manages to make this implausible medical mystery not only believable but also compelling. When fire chief Jim Swopes traces the unknown disease that's wiped out half his department in less than a week to a truck crash on a western Washington highway, he knows his days are numbered--like the other victims, all of whom died, he has just seven days to live unless he can find an antidote to a chemical poison no one else believes exists. Helped by a beautiful doctor whose comatose sister drove one of the trucks in the crash, he traces the poison to a biotech firm with nothing to lose and everything to gain by letting the clock run out. But until it does, this tightly plotted race-against-time thriller will keep you riveted. --Jane Adams
From Publishers Weekly
Seattle firefighter Jim Swope-the irresistible protagonist of this latest high-octane thriller from the author of the Thomas Black detective series-is, in his own words, "destined for a jail cell, a straitjacket, or more likely, to end up dancing the funky chicken in a fusillade of bullets." This divorced, womanizing father of two has just realized he has exactly six days to figure out the nature of the mysterious ailment that's been killing off his North Bend Fire and Rescue colleagues-and is... read more
Earl Emerson, bestselling author of Vertical Burn, turns up the heat with this dynamic, fact-based depiction of the world of firefighting. In a frantic race against time, one man must unlock the secret to his own potential demise and that of his entire department—as they venture . . .
INTO THE INFERNO
In the freezing heart of the Pacific Northwest winter, a group of firefighters from North Bend Fire and Rescue responds to a freeway accident. Two trucks have collided on the icy pavement. One of the trucks was transporting livestock; the other carried within its cargo an unmarked, innocuous-looking container. Now the highway is chaos with irate drivers, volunteer fire crews, and hundreds of escaped chickens.
The trucks are cleared, the highway reopens, and another day ends. But the repercussions of the crash are enormous. For six months later, the firefighters who were at the scene begin to mysteriously succumb to unexplained accidents and ailments. Jim Swope wakes up with the first, strange symptom—a symptom of an unknown disease that renders its victims brain-dead within a week. Now he has only seven days to determine how he and his fellow firefighters have been poisoned—and to discover an antidote . . . if one exists. If he doesn’t, these will be the last seven days of his life.
In a red-hot pursuit to the end, Earl Emerson puts real-life heroes up against seemingly insurmountable odds. Intense in the third degree, Into the Inferno is a brilliant melding of fact and thriller. Prepare yourself for the sweltering heat of wickedly good suspense.
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful:
What a disappointment!, August 13, 2003
from Oxford, England
Emerson is one of the best of today's thriller writers - quirky, human, entertaining - with a good sense of locale. The Mac Fontana and Thomas Black series are outstanding. This is a piece of overwritten rubbish. The writing is simply bad - the opening pages are those of a novice not a skilled craftsman. The plot is unconvincing (to be generous). The group dynamics - which he usually excels at - are childish. But above all the characters are totally uninvolving and unconvincing. The awkward combination of self-knowing weakness and "charm" of the protagonist just make the hair curl on the back of your neck. This is careless and lazy writing from an author who is capable of much better and needs to stop looking for the "besteller" - and thereby underestimating the taste of his readers. Regretfully all three thunbs down.