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The Barcelona Review

QUIZ


Literature of Pandemics


So now that we are in one, do we need to read about fictional pandemics?  Yes.  Much truth can be found in these novels about sinister governments, greedy minions, improper courses of action, and things going further awry due to public panic.  Many foretell apocalypses or present post-apocalyptic worlds.  If you’re familiar with the genre, give it a go and you’re in the running to receive a 30-euro (£23 / $33) gift certificate to spend at Amazon; in case of a tie, a name will be drawn. Deadline: Aug. 31, 2020

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Name the novel:

1.  Beginning with a man who goes blind while waiting for a traffic light to change, his affliction soon becomes a city-wide contagion, and people are rounded up into asylums where violence is rampant. 


2.  Explores events in the fictional town of Commonwealth, Washington, in 1918 during World War I and the Spanish flu epidemic. The town agrees to quarantine itself from the outside world, hoping to escape the international epidemic of the flu.


3.  After the wonder drug BlyssPluss is widely distributed, a global pandemic, deliberately caused by it, breaks out and begins wiping out the human race and causing mass chaos outside of the protected compound.


4.  In this post-apocalyptic horror novel, a car crash at a petrol station accidentally sparks the spreading of a deadly super-flu, a virus engineered by the government.

5.  This thriller follows a woman's attempts to understand the death of her child, leading to her uncovering a sinister government plot involving a virus called 'Wuhan-400', which has a kill-rate of 100 per cent, developed as the “perfect” biological weapon.


6.  When a deadly plague forces the people of the town of Oran into quarantine, hysteria mounts and people respond with anger, fear or blame, sewing further paranoia and division amongst the group.


7.   A worldwide epidemic from Shenzhen, China, sweeps through New York City, which becomes a ghost town.


8.  This novel opens with a performance of King Lear on the night that a flu pandemic breaks out in America, which ravages the world in 20 years’ time. Still, even after the apocalypse, there is Shakespeare. 


9.   Set in a Manhattan segregated by a virus that has divided people into the infected (flesh-eating and mortally contagious zombies) and uninfected, we follow one of the people tasked with removing the former while working to keep order.


10.  In a novel about race and class and love, the background is a pandemic of cholera, killing thousands, while a cannon was shot regularly because people believed that gunpowder could stop the epidemic.

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