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New York cab driver Yuri Davydov is a disgruntled Russian immigrant ready to lash out at his adoptive nation, which he believes has denied him the American Dream. As a former technician in the Soviet Union's biological weapons system, Yuri knows how to wreak havoc in his new home. But before he executes his masterpiece of vengenance, he experiments first on selected targets. Dr Jack Stapleton begins to witness some unusual cases in his capacity as forensic pathologist in the City medical examiner's office. A Greek immigrant apparently succumbs to sudden overwhelming pneumonia, while an obese Afro-American woman collapses with acute respiratory distress. When an unexpected coincidence suggest to Jack that these seemingly unrelated deaths are actually connected murders, his colleagues and superiors remain sceptical. Meanwhile he is taking himself deeper into deadly danger - but can he reach the heart of the puzzle before Davydov and his associates unleash into the streets of New York the ultimate terror: a modern bio-weapon?
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Robin Cook's latest plot--the threat of an anthrax [bacterium] turned loose in a New York government building and in Central Park--is ripped straight from the headlines, and as such it may be charitably described as having a certain lumpish quality in the prose and an overabundance of cuteness in the lead characters.
Jack Stapleton and Laurie Montgomery, the dueling forensic pathologists who bounced off each other in Cook's Chromosome 6, collide and combine once again as a mad Russian cabdriver, who used to work in a Moscow bioweapons factory, comes up with a plan to punish America for not welcoming him with open arms. The cabby forms an unlikely alliance with two firemen who happen to be white supremacists; they fund his anthrax research to further their own lunatic schemes.
Cook is, as ever, best at creating scenes of perfectly realized medical terror which plug into the paranoia of the moment. But if you want deep characters and sensitive description, read Fay Weldon. --Dick AdlerFrom the Back Cover:
A disgruntled Russian emigre is poised to lash out at the adoptive nation he believes has denied him the American dream. A former technician in the Soviet biological weapons system, he possesses the knowledge to unleash into the streets of New York City the ultimate terror: a modern bioweapon. But before he executes his final act of vengeance, he must first experiment on a few unsuspecting victims...With signature skill, Robin Cook has crafted a page-turning thriller rooted in up-to-the-minute biotechnology. Vector is all-too-plausible fiction at its terrifying best...
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