Fatal Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Fatal

Bantam, May 2002, 24.95, 387 pp.
ISBN: 0553802038

Dr. Matt Rutledge obviously knows something is wrong in his hometown of Belinda, West Virginia when several of his patients in for not much more than a cold suddenly die with strange symptoms. He believes that the Belinda Coal and Coke Company has poisoned the air, land, or water or a combination of all three with their usual disregard for safety or environmental health. Matt detests the coal company because their practices led to the death of his father, an employee of Belinda Coal and Coke.
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Matt digs deeper into why intelligent people are suddenly babbling and have unsightly lumps on their bodies. He learns that former Belinda residents also have died from the same mysterious ailment. He soon finds out that while he practiced medicine elsewhere, his hometown was the test site of a supervaccine whose consequences are starting to appear. That elixir is about to be approved for use across the country; a few deaths in backwater West Virginia is not enough to stop Omnivax from reaching the marketplace.

Michael Palmer is a sure shot (no pun intended) to have his tenth New York Times best seller with the action-packed FATAL. The story line never slows down from the opening sore throat to the final climax. Readers will admire Matt for his stand against Herculean odds, but what makes him feel real is his deep negative feelings about the coal company. Though the plot seems to go over the edge at times, Mr. Palmer provides a penetrating spot light on America's vaccination program and to a lesser degree the environmental unsafe at any speed record.

Harriet Klausner

The review of this Book prepared by Harriet Klausner

Chapter Analysis of Fatal

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book descript. of violence and chases 10%Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 60%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 20%How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) 10% Tone of story    -   suspenseful (sophisticated fear) Time/era of story:    -   2000+ (Present) Medical Thriller    -   Yes Medical Plotlets:    -   wild experiments on people    -   cure/disease    -   unethical drug company Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   doctor Age:    -   40's-50's Ethnicity/Race    -   White/American


United States    -   Yes The US:    -   Deep South Misc setting    -   scientific labs

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment Amount of dialog    -   significantly more dialog than descript

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Michael Palmer Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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