A decade in the future, humanity thrives in the absence of sickness and disease.
We owe our good health to a humble parasite - a genetically engineered tapeworm developed by the pioneering SymboGen Corporation. When implanted, the tapeworm protects us from illness, boosts our immune system - even secretes designer drugs. It's been successful beyond the scientists' wildest dreams. Now, years on, almost every human being has a SymboGen tapeworm living within them.
But these parasites are getting restless. They want their own lives...and will do anything to get them.
3 out of 5 stars
A decade into the future everyone has a genetically engineered tapeworm in themselves to keep them healthy. Its designed to improve the immune system and stop disease.
"Parasite" starts by us seeing Sally Mitchel wake up from a coma just as the doctors are about to turn off the life support. She was in a car accident and unfortunately doesn't remember anything about her life before she wakes up. Shes like a new born baby and has to re learn everything.
SymboGen Corporation take her under their wing and pay for her medical care, rehabilitation and tests. She has tests every 6 months or so.
6 years later and Sally has found love with Nathan. She is getting much better and trying to live her life until one day she goes to the mall with her sister and sees a little girl acting strange. The little girl is walking as in a daze and not reacting to nobody. So begins a rollercoaster of a ride for Sally as she learns about the sleeping sickness. She is thrust into a world of Parasitology and doesn't know who she can trust or who is telling her the truth. How and why is the sleeping sickness spreading so quick? How do the people who succumb to it know her name? Sally's quiet life is upended when she has to find the answers when people close to her are catching the sickness.
Okay firstly I'm going to say EWWW. Reading about how people have worms inside them and think its normal was just icky!!! I was squirming thinking of it. I think I now have a fear of worms and cat poo!!! Secondly Mira Grant sure knows how to spin a tale. While the first 45 percent of Parasite was really slow going, I still utterly enjoyed it. Its spent learning about Sally and seeing her journey to get better, her relationship with Nathan and her family (whom I thought were horrible to her) and her relationship with SymboGen. I know the first book in a series is usually introducing characters etc. but I just found alot of needless information in the first half of Parasite.
At a certain point Sal meets someone that can answer her questions and from then on the story gets faster and more happens. There are twists and turns and revelations that leave you saying wow. I do have to say though that the BIG twist I had figured out at the start of the book. Its fairly obvious but there were some wow moments for me.
I loved the story but found myself getting bogged down and lost with all the medical jargon when they were explaining about the parasites. I liked Sally's character but my favourite character was Tansy. She is like a psychopath that has ADHD. It was so funny reading her and I hope there's more of Tansy in the next book.
This was my first Mira Grant book and even though its a bit slow, Im looking forward to book 2 to see where the story goes from here.
Received from Netgalley.
Review by Natalie Cleary