Alien Infection

Title: Alien Infection
Author: Darrell Bain
Genre: SF, Thriller
Rating: M
Ranking: Poor
LibraryThing: Title:Alien Infection
Type: EBook
Read: 2006-09-05

What is the Alien Infection? Will it doom the world or save it?

I got this as an e-book from, but I don't think I'm going to get anything by this author again.


It sounded really interesting from the summary -- otherwise I wouldn't have read it. What is the Alien Infection? Will Our Hero survive the Men In Black chasing him?

The amount of coincidence and luck required in this plot is amazing. Sure, we give the author one coincidence for free (the one that starts off the story). I guess it isn't quite the events that happen that are lucky, but, gee, Our Hero has a conveniently useful bunch of acquaintances!

Another part of the problem is that the title gives away 50% of the plot, and the blurb gives the other 40% away. Which meant that, instead of feeling like this was a tense thriller, I was just impatiently waiting for them to get on with it.


Too good to be true, and flat at the same time. The three main characters are given characteristics that the plot needs in order to solve the problems that come up, yet they don't feel like "whole" characters, just containers for attributes that push the plot along. For example, we meet Our Heroine because she's a go-between for false IDs, that's fair enough. Oh, but she's also a nice girl on the run from the mob, because the plot requires that Our Hero find somewhere hidden to hole up in. Oh, and she also has Lupus, because the plot requires a demonstration that the Alien Infection can cure incurable diseases. Oh, and she's also quarter Cherokee, like Our Hero, so that she can survive the Alien Infection. Oh, and she has exactly the same taste in books, so that she can be fallen in love with. Oh, and just when the plot needs to have people who can fight, she casually mentions that she's an ex-Marine. Perhaps it isn't the characteristics per se, but the way they're presented, at the last minute, like a deus ex machina. Though I think it's more than that; I also didn't get a feel for the "voice" of the characters, nothing that made them sparkle and come to life.

Another thing that irritated me was the confusion of love and lust.


Full of cliches. Plodding. Pedestrian. Also repeated things we already knew, and left out things we should have been told. Telling, not showing.

"And now I guess I am too. Oh goddamn, what next?" She expressed her feelings as though this were just another catastrophe in a long line of disasters in her life.


Gee-whiz ideas without any great thought about the implications. Again, concepts were introduced in order to make convenient solutions to otherwise difficult plot-problems.

Sid and Nancy scale: a stale pink donut