Immortality is an apocalyptic techno-thriller fueled by the ecological turmoil in our world.
Without warning, something has gone terribly awry in our environment. In the remote and unnoticed places of the world, small pockets of death begin occurring. As the initially isolated extinctions spread, the world's eyes focus on this unimaginable horror and chaos. Out of the ecological imbalance, something new and extraordinary is evolving and surviving to fill the voids left by these extinctions. Evolution is operating in ways no one could have expected and environmental damage may be the catalyst. Once discovered, this knowledge changes everything.
Read more about the story behind the story, the cosmology of Immortality.
An apocalyptic story that evolves, September 21, 2008
By Schtinky, TOP 500 Amazon Reviewer (read original review on Amazon.com)
Deep in the Amazon, within specifically precise boundaries, humans drop dead within seconds, leaving behind animals and plant life. The areas are circular, and become known as "kill zones". Little notice is taken until a kill zone strikes in Anchorage Alaska ... American soil.
Dr. Kathy Morrison, a CDC doctor in their BVMC (Bacterial and Viral Maximum Containment) lab is assigned to study the kill zones. Are they chemical or biological? What she does find is large amounts of Chromatium Omri, a benign water bacterium, in eighty percent of the Anchorage victims. She needs an expert on the bacterium.
Dr. Mark Freedman, a bimolecular biologist, has been studying ancient layers of Chromatium Omri BIC 3.7 in fossilized form from the Cretaceous period. He's nicknamed the bacterium COBIC 3.7. Mark leaves behind his girlfriend Gracy, his ex-wife and daughter, to fly from Los Angeles to Atlanta to join Dr. Morrison's search for the cause of the kill zones. When Mark discovers a tiny "seed" embedded inside the COBIC, it's a race for time to discover if the seed is natural or foreign, and whether it's related to the kill zones. What they find is going to surprise you, over and over again.
Other major characters are Sarah Mayfair, a police officer in New Jersey and her hundred and twenty pound Rottweiler Ralph. Sarah finds herself a fugitive after surviving a kill zone, and must find her way back into society. Artie Hartman and his pregnant wife Suzy live in New York. Artie is a lawyer, working as an assistant DA and running from his past as a former gang member. General McKafferty, an ugly, determined man, leads the military research faction called BARDCOM ... but is BARDCOM working with the CDC or against them?
Mark and Kathy are in a race against time and a deadly foe, one that cannot be predicted or controlled. The fate of the world relies upon them breaking the code of the COBIC bacterium.
As an aficionado of Apocalypse books, 'Immortality' is a great addition to my collection. While marketed as a techno-thriller, it manages to fulfill both genres quiet nicely. Kevin Bohacz has done his homework. The descriptions are detailed, the dialogue is natural and flowing, and the plot has the distinctive feel of "real time". The characters are fully fleshed and naturally believable, you'll feel as though you know them personally as you travel with them through loss and triumph. The flow from one character's POV to the next is smooth and fits the flow of the storyline. Bohacz's coverage of possibilities, such as military mishandling, gang behavior, societal classes, changing politics, fear, herding and hoarding, and religious zealotry all smack of realism. 'Immortality' is a journey you don't want to miss.
On the downside, there are some typing errors, spelling and punctuation, probably due to a small press company, but don't let those distract you from a great story. The novel is not necessarily fast-paced due to the detailing, but I still found myself unable to put it down, and thinking about it while not reading. 'Immortality' is an overlooked gem in the apocalypse genre. I highly recommend this book. Enjoy!
Kirkus: There is enough power in the premise to leave readers reeling. A novel that will surprise fans of science-fiction and doomsday scenarios...
An eschatological techno-thriller that explores human evolution, technology and the threat of global environmental collapse. An illicit bulldozer operator begins hearing terrible noises from the depths of the Brazilian rainforest. It's too late for the operator and something terrible is in the air. Birds begin to fall from the sky, and before he find shelter, he slides into a deadly paralysis. Traversing the globe, the narrative picks up ten months later in a Wyoming mountain range. Nobel laureate Mark Freedman is leading an expedition to study bacteria with a group of graduate students. Unaware of the incident in Brazil, or the other “kill zones” manifesting around the world, his knowledge of a particular bacterial strain will become indispensable in the following months as humanity struggles to survive. In Atlanta, Dr. Kathy Morrison humbly prepares for a blind date, but in a few weeks she will be looking for the causes behind another demi-apocalypse—this time on American soil. What follows isn't simply a rehashed viral saga in a level-four biohazard suit. It's a story about genetic revelation, environmental destiny and humanity's ecological responsibility. The science of the novel feels just on the side of authentic, and the expertly rendered sterilization procedures that Morrison must endure are as creepy and cool as anything on film or in print. But the
novel's quasi-metaphysical implications make it more technically fantastic than hardcore science fiction. Bohacz takes great care establishing each character with personal details that serve the narrative well. Additionally, the science and science fiction are fascinating. There is enough power in the premise to leave readers reeling. A novel that will surprise fans of science-fiction and doomsday scenarios.
- Kirkus Discoveries
Sci-Fi Reader:This book manages to do what all the best sci-fi does – provide a thought-provoking, alternative viewpoint on the business of existence. I recommend you give it a go. (go to Sci-Fi Reader)
Immortality, by Kevin Bohacz - Reviewed by S. J. Higbee for Sci-Fi Reader
Sarah Mayfield, a young rookie cop, is plagued by dreams and a sense that some horror is just around the corner. Nobel winning molecular biologist, Professor Mark Freedman is increasingly obsessed with the microbe that made his reputation. His hunch that fossilised mats of this organism may be linked to great extinction events of the past, is starting to look feasible in the light of his most recent discoveries made on a field trip. Reformed gang member, Artie, is now a solid citizen as his beloved wife Suzy is expecting their first baby. Dr Kathy Morrison works at CDC, the national facility where the entire world's known pathogens are stored and studied. These four people are ripped out of their everyday lives and find themselves struggling to make sense of it all when the unthinkable happens. And goes on happening...
This doomsday tale of changing times and humanity's attempts to adjust has an old-fashioned feel about it. The constant swinging between a very wide cast of characters -- all told in third person POV -- harks back to Michael Crichton's The Andromeda Strain in atmosphere and treatment. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing. However, in order to make this particular storyline structure work, the author has to tread a very fine line between keeping up the pace, without confusing his reader with a dizzying procession of characters and events. Bohacz manages not to confuse, but at the expense of the narrative drive, particularly in the first section. I felt he could have shed many of the early episodes without losing much of the plot, while gaining pace and keeping the key characters to the fore.
But as the narrative picks up and the main characters clearly emerge from the incidental clutter, the science fiction aspects of the storyline gripped me sufficiently to keep me engrossed for the duration. Once he gets into his stride, Bohacz's depiction of the despair and chaos as civilisation crashes and the differing reactions of his characters are entirely plausible; as are the more extreme edges of his hypothesis accounting for the main extinction events that have dotted Earth's history. Bohacz's writing style isn't flashy. There are no shafts of sharp humour, or displays of wordplay. But his painstaking, detailed accounts of the changes afflicting his main four protagonists are riveting and horrifying in equal measure.
After a sticky start, this book manages to do what all the best sci-fi does – provide a thought-provoking, alternative viewpoint on the business of existence. I recommend you give it a go.