Antivirus by Michael Koogler is a science fiction thriller with a twist of gruesome. It kept my mind engaged and my skin crawling until the end. This novel was a bit outside my normal genres—a bit more on the hardcore science fiction side than I tend to read.
There are compelling characters throughout Antivirus, I immediately connected with Jennifer and Jon Sheppard. Their relationship felt real and believable. I understood the conflict they both felt in relation to their careers and their need to make sure the other was happy. And their dog, Dakota, filled out their family, and became a real key player in the unfolding of the plot. I could see him bounding around the house and backyard wrestling with Jon and protecting Jennifer. I actually disagree with the book’s blurb on GoodReads. This book, in my opinion is about Jon and his family.
The computer virus, introduced in the Prologue, was a real character to me as well. The level of sophistication of the software and its ability to adapt was amazing. I was reminded of the movie, Her, which showed the tender side of intelligent, adaptable AI. The Horde is the complete flip of that. Imagine Hannibal Lecter as a virus. *shivers*
I will admit that Antivirus was a bit gory. The gruesome bits were a bit too much for me. The way the virus consumed people was disturbing. As the book wound down to its conclusion and the virus ramped up the body count, the gore escalated. There is only so much guts and gore this girl can take. I’m barely able to watch people bleeding to death on television without getting a bit squicked out.
Antivirus was a thrill ride I wasn’t expecting. If you have a weak stomach, you may wish to proceed with caution. And be prepared to be haunted…hunted by The Horde.