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Yale 62

Pandemic Reading, Anyone?

Class Secretary John Stewart suspects some of us may have interest in books about plagues. He sent us a list of several he personally recommends.

Pale Horse, Pale Rider, Katherine Anne Porter. A great read, holds up to today

The Plague, Albert Camus. We’ve probably all read it, but worth revisiting.

The Andromeda Strain, Michael Crichton. Of course

The Stand, Stephen King. Long but gripping. Also a miniseries from 1994

Love in the Time of Cholera, Gabriel Garcia Marques. The king of magic realism

Journal of the Plague Years, Norman Spinrad. A dean of SF.

The Years of Rice and Salt, Kim Stanley Robinson. One of my favorite writers. This one begins ca. 1,000 and takes the the start the Christians are all killed by the plague, and it’s how the next 1,000 would go without Christianity. Brilliant.

Station 11, Emily St. John Mandel. A traveling band of Shakespearian actors across a post-plague USA.

And I would add The Decameron, by Bocaccio. A group of young people are holed up in a villa outside Florence in the 14th century to avoid the plague.

Further, this list (click to view) from Vulture is an amazing list of books with plague in the theme, very wide-ranging, from literary to thriller. There may be more there that interest our readers.

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