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English 10 Enriched: The Hot Zone

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Michaela Allen

on 19 March 2013

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Transcript of English 10 Enriched: The Hot Zone

Written by: Richard Preston
Created by: Michaela Allen The Hot Zone Author's Point of View The author of The Hot Zone, Richard Preston, used the third person point of view in his book. The third person tense was greatly significant to the storyline. As I mentioned earlier, the book was broken up into miniature stories, each one containing a different person. With this specific set-up, the third person was the most logical option. The third person tense gave room for Richard Preston to identify each of his characters easily, allowing the reader to follow along without confusion. In the last part of The Hot Zone, Richard Preston changed his point of view to first person. The reason that he proceeded to change his point of view was because he began to describe the trip that he took to Mount Elgon (the place where the virus was first contracted). This change in view was important to the book because it informed the reader that the author was writing from his own experiences. Writer's Style The Hot Zone: Summary The Hot Zone is a novel that focuses on the diagnosis of the lethal virus, Ebola, during the late 1980's. Throughout the book, the author, Richard Preston, proceeds to interview multiple people that have worked with Ebola directly. The entire book is a series of stories about each of these people and their encounters with Ebola. In the end, the stories all tie together to create a complete diagnosis of the Ebola virus. Richard Preston uses the following wrting styles in his book: Compound, Complex, and Compound/ Complex Sentences Imagery Figurative Language- similies, metaphors, and personification Examples are placed in the next frame Examples Compound Sentence- "He understood what had happened, and he said he would keep his mouth shut." Page-335

Complex Sentence- " If he and Tom were locked up in the Slammer, they would not be able to carry out any research on this virus." Page 334

Compund/Complex Sentence- "So they found a friendly civilian technician and he twisted a rubber band around their arms, and they watched while he filled some tubes with their blood." Page 335 More Examples Imagery- "Usually he wore faded blue jeans with a flaming Hawaiian shirt, along with sandals and dweebish white socks, looking like he had just spent the night in a Mexican hotel." Page 324

Similie- "He saw virus particles shaped like snakes, in negative images." Page 317

Metaphor- "The cell was a world down there, and somewhere in that jungle hid a virus." Page 313

Personification- "Then his stomach screwed up into a knot and turned over, and he felt an unpleasant sensation." Page 314 Culture, Society, and Characteristics
of the Villagers Culture, Society, and Characteristics
of Nancy Jaax The villagers in this book lived in a secluded area in the jungles of Africa. The villagers were quiet people that kept to themselves, living in a tight knit community. In this particular case, the entire village was wiped out from a lethal strand of the Ebola virus. These people did not have access to treatment for this strand, which meant that after they were infected, they just sat, waiting to die. In the 1980's, technology was not as advanced as it is now. At this point in time, a vaccine had not been created for this virus. Access to vaccines and doctors was nonexisitent, meaning that many of the villagers died without knowing why they were ill. With all of these factors in place, the only solution was to let these people die in peace. Sadly, the villagers were leading simple lives in a simple world, not bothering a soul. In the end it didn't matter though, their simple lives were taken from them and the world just kept spinning. As a parent and a scientist, Nancy Jaax led a busy life. She was rarely home to see her children and her husband. Nancy spent most of her time in the lab, studying viruses within animals. She worked in a sanitary area with few people present. Her job required her to dress in a containment suit at all times. She was also required to keep quiet about her testing. The lab that she worked at was in an United States military base. All of her co-workers, who were a part of the scientific community, worked hard to protect their data from the outside world. The information about the methods that Nancy was using could not leave the base because they couldn't risk the public being involved. The scientifc community was very secretive. The life that Nancy Jaax lived was a small speck in the web of secrets that the base had created. Influence and Accomplishments After this book was written, the world was exposed to the danger of scientific works. It opened the readers' eyes to a world that they had no idea exisited. The release of this book let the world know what was occuring in our United States Military bases. As it would be expected, there were people that became upset after reading the book. They had realized that lethal agents were being tested in their country, a country that is supposed to protect its citizens. On the other hand, there were others who were greatly intrigued. They were excited to find out that there were people out there that cared about the survival of humanity. Out of all of these groups, the scientific community was the most interested in the procedures taking place. Once they were exposed, they wanted to become involved too. The community wanted to work to find a cure (sadly, still to this day, a cure or vaccine has not been discovered for the Ebola virus). This group of scientists wanted to be a part of the movement to save humanity. Important Quotes Important Quotes Important Quotes Important Quotes Important Quotes "I know about that. I come from western Kenya. I was the woman with Charles Monet." Page 47~ Unknown woman

This was a highly important quote because it revealed a character role that was nonexisitent beforehand. The role of this charcter was small, and her name was never revealed, but this statement allowed the doctors and scientists to understand more about the source of the Ebola virus. This woman was close with the first known victim of Ebola, and after meeting with her, the scientists discovered information about victim zero that was crucial for further studies. All in all, this woman played a major role in helping scientists discover the source of the Ebola virus. "He's positive for Marburg virus. This is really serious. We don't know much about Marburg." Page 77~ American Researcher

This quote marked an important discovery. As I cited, this quote is located at the beginning of the book. Since it was located so close to the beginning, the rising action hadn't begun quite yet. Until this quote was stated, the plot line was a bit foggy. This information gave insight to what the book's conflict was. Not only did it mark the beginning of the rising action, but it also foreshadowed the discovery of the Ebola virus. After discovering more information about Marburg, scientists came to find that Ebola was extremely similar. This quote marked the point where studies began on Marburg, and later, Ebola virus strands. "I remember having major confusion. I remember before my surgery, that I walked out of my room with my IV drip hanging out of me. I remember the nurses turning and turning me in bed. I don't remember much of the pain." Page 96~ Dr. Shem Musoke

This quote gave great insight to the victim's thoughts while infected with Marburg. This quote was from a survivor of Marburg, marking an important discovery in the plot line. From this information, the discovery was made that Marburg does not kill 100% of its victims. I found this quote quite intriguing because it allowed the reader to understand the victim's feelings. This quote opened up the reader's view of the characters. In turn, I believe that it allowed the story to come to life for the first time in the book. "What is the nature of the Ebola Virus?...It is related to Marburg. It is transmitted the same way, through contact with infected tissue and blood, and the signs and symptoms are much the same." Page 370~C.J. Peters

This quote took place halfway through the book, but it clarified an item that may have been confusing to some readers. This was the first quote, by a scientist, that explained exactly what Ebola entailed. Ebola was described earlier in the book, but it was never specified by an expert until this point. This quote allowed the reader to take the time to process how Ebola harms the body. After reading this quote, the story became real in my mind, opening my eyes to understand the massive destruction that Ebola can cause. "This is Colonel C.J. Peters, up at USAMRIID. I'm the chief of the disease-assessment division...How do you do?...Anyway, I'm calling to report that the second agent is apparently not Marburg. The second agent is Ebola virus." Page 369~ C.J. Peters

There were many points in The Hot Zone that could be defined as the climax, but in my opinion, this quote was it. As explained above, C.J. Peters confirmed that the Ebola virus, a lethal agent, with a 9/10 survival rate, was found in the United States for the first time. This quote was the end of the rising action and the moment that the climax became apparent. When I read this, I knew right away that United States' citizens were in danger of dying from a foriegn and an extremely hot agent. This quote was definitely the MOST important in the book. This quote iniated the moment that all of the miniature stories began to form into one, creating the big picture. Primary Source This picture takes place in Kitum Cave, a cave that was investigated as the source of the Ebola/Marburg outbreak in the book; this is the relationship between the nonficition book and the source. The picture is an example of a primary source because it is a firsthand account of an event that appears without further interpretation. In the photograph, Richard Preston stands in a biocontainment suit. I found the photograph on his website, futher varifying that the photo is a primary source. Richard Preston (the author of The Hot Zone) is the man standing in this picture. He is wearing a biocontainment suit. Secondary Source "Review and Criticism:
Very few books have caused me to turn pages as quickly and with as much anticipation as I did recently while reading The Hot Zone. In this narrative, Ebola comes alive with Preston's vivid descriptions of the ability of a microscopic filovirus to wreck havoc on human and animal flesh and there is no question that the author certainly has a flair for capturing and commanding the attention of his audience..."
By: Amy Jost~ 1999
http://www.haverford.edu/biology/edwards/disease/reviews/jostR.html
The above article is an example of a seconday source because it is a secondhand interpretation of the The Hot Zone. The relationship between the book and the above source is quite apparent. The author of this source, Amy Jost, is reviewing the The Hot Zone, she simply stated her opinion in the above excerpt. Ms. Jost talks specifically about Richard Preston's description and extradoinary detail. She also stated that she greatly enjoyed the book (further in her review). Furthermore, this review of The Hot Zone is an example of a secondary source that holds a connection to the author. Recent Article "Mysterious New 'Heartland Virus' Discovered In Missouri"
by RICHARD KNOX
August 29, 2012 6:18 PM
http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2012/08/29/160272241/mysterious-new-heartland-virus-discovered-in-missouri

"Two Missouri farmers have been infected with a brand-new tick-borne virus that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is calling the Heartland virus.
The men recovered but suffered serious illness that required hospital care and weeks of convalescence.Symptoms included fever, severe fatigue, headache and nausea. Their platelet counts plummeted, but even though platelets are necessary for blood clotting, the men didn't suffer abnormal bleeding." The above is the beginning of an article that I located online. This article is closely related to The Hot Zone. In the article, it is explained that two farmers, living in Missouri, were infected with a recently discovered "tick-borne" virus. The relationship between this article and The Hot Zone is quite evident. Considering that The Hot Zone is about the effects that that a lethal virus can trigger in a human, this article proves to relate closely to the topic. Moreover, this source describes the effects of a virus once it replicates in a human, similar to the nonficition book, The Hot Zone. Poem Disease
by Dean Graham

It tears me apart to say the words
To think the truth for just a second
Because then it's real - not a lie
And I'll have no choice but to forever cry

But still it's something I must face
And I must fight - win or lose
Because it's there - inside of me
Hidden in my skin - hard to see

I'm truly scared of what could be
Of what lurks beneath my skin
It may be hard for you to know
Thats because I cover it with a show

No one knew of my horrid secret
The thing I dreaded most
And then you appeared - came along
And spoke to me with hope's song

The lyrics came so loud and clear
Hold on, be strong, have hope
For that reason I trusted you
And that trust just grew and grew

I dont know where to next or if
This battle I will win
But you're here to keep me strong
And forever remind me or hope's song

I've said before how scared I am
How hope is hard for me to keep
But this I'll face just for you
My friend, my hero - It's true

I hear the clock as it slowly ticks
Shows me how time goes by
So not a minute should we waste
Let's get this over with - post haste

And if the news is really bad
I won't cry or break down
I'll fight it all the way
So next time I can save YOUR day I located the following poem
online. The relationship between
this poem and The Hot Zone is one
of mutual tragedy. This poem is
written in the perspective of a man
afraid of disease. In
The Hot Zone, Ebola is the virus
focused on for the majority of
the plot line. In the book, Ebola is
described in great detail and it is
emphasized that Ebola is extreme-
ly lethal. This poem expresses the
sadness and fearfulness of death
when one is not physically well.
As I read through this poem, it
was obvious that the disease being
described clearly matched the
nature of Ebola.
This poem is closely related to
The Hot Zone, representing the
human fears that correspond with
disease and death. The Hot Zone
Written by: Richard Preston Works Cited











Graham, Dean. "Disease." Sad Poem : Disease. 21 Jan. 2006. 06 Mar. 2013.
<http://www.poems-and-quotes.com/sad/poems.php?id=591465>.

Jost, Amy. "A Review of Richard Preston's The Hot Zone." The Hot Zone. Harvard
University, 1999. 06 Mar. 2013. <http://www.haverford.edu/biology/edwards/disease/reviews/jostR.html>.

Knox, Richard. "Mysterious New 'Heartland Virus' Discovered In Missouri." NPR.
NPR, 29 Aug. 2012. 06 Mar. 2013.
<http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2012/08/29/160272241/mysterious-new-heartland-virus-discovered-in-missouri>.

Preston, Richard. The Hot Zone. New York: Random House, 1994. Print.

Preston, Richard. The Hot Zone. Dan W. Dalgard, 1994. The Washington Post, 1994.
6 Mar. 2013. <www.anchorbooks.com>.

Preston, Richard. "Richard Preston: Study Guides." Richard Preston. 2008. 06
Mar. 2013. <http://richardpreston.net/study-guide>. (Preston 1) (Jost 1) (Knox 1) (Graham 1) (Preston)
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