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The atmosphere in the lab is toxic.
It is only a matter of time before there is a flu pandemic with the potential to kill billions. Or so wealthy entrepreneur Lyle Lynstrum believes. That is why he is funding research into transgenics - the mechanism by which viruses can jump the species barrier - at a high security lab on a tidal island off the North Devon coast.
A suspiciously rapid turnover of staff has him worried. He sends in scientist Katie Flanagan as an undercover lab technician. Something is clearly very wrong, but before Katie can get to the bottom of what is going on, a colleague is struck down by a mysterious illness.
Has the safety of the facility been compromised, allowing a deadly virus to escape? Katie begins to suspect that the scientists are as deadly as the diseases - and that her cover has been blown.
Then the island is cut off by high seas and a terrifying game of cat-and-mouse begins...
"A thrilling, thought-provoking read. A real page-turner." Kate Ellis, author of The Mechanical Devil, a Wesley Peterson murder mystery
"A group of near strangers being thrown together on a tidal island is a classic crime setting... and for good reason. But add a research lab full of disease-carrying mosquitoes, a heroine with no great skill at staying undercover, and the shadowiest of shadowy killers, and you can feel the tension ratchet up with every chapter. Poulson knows her way around a lab and is unmatched at depicting the lives of working scientists and demystifying their world for a general audience, while never letting the setting overpower the story. Here the stakes are high, the suspects are many and the solution is satisfying. I loved it." Catriona McPherson, multi-award-winning author of Strangers at the Gate
"A compelling and original mystery with a convincingly detailed plot. It highlights the perils of viral research when a scientist goes rogue. An atmospheric setting and a rich cast of characters ensure that this is a highly intriguing read." Rebecca Tope, author of Secrets in the Cotswolds, a Cotswolds murder mystery