First edition.
Publisher, Date:
New York : Ecco, An Imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, 2019.
308 pages ; 24 cm
9780062916433 (hardcover)
System Availability:
Current Holds:
Control Number:
Call Number:
F Koe
Course Reserves:
# System items in:
Fiction/Biography Profile
Roberto Diaz (Male), Military officer, Pentagon bioterror operative;
Science fiction
Biological warfare
Military missions
Race against time
- Australia
Missouri - Midwest (U.S.)
Time Period
2019 -- 21st century
Large Cover Image
Trade Reviews

  Publishers Weekly Review

Screenwriter and director Koepp makes his fiction debut with a sensational SF thriller. In 1979, Skylab, the first NASA space station, crashes into the Indian Ocean, with a piece landing in Western Australia. Aboard Skylab is a highly adaptive fungal organism, Cordyceps novus, which was sent into space as a research project. Once back on Earth, the organism starts to evolve into a sentient killer that sees humankind--and all other life-forms--as nourishment. In 1987, USAF Maj. Roberto Diaz, a Defense Nuclear Agency operative, manages to contain the organism after it decimates a remote Australian community in nightmarish fashion. In 2019, Diaz, who's now retired, receives the midnight call he's been dreading--the remnants of the organism, buried far underground inside a former military installation in Kansas, may have escaped. Diaz rushes from his North Carolina home to Kansas, where he joins two security guards in battling the menace. Breakneck pacing and nonstop action compensate for the predictable story line and the occasional contrivance. Michael Crichton fans won't want to miss this one. Agent: Mollie Glick, CAA. (Sept.)

  Booklist Review

This is a terrific thriller: ambitious, audacious, gory, scary, flamboyant, and funny. All good thrillers need a villain, and this one has a doozy a highly adaptive fungus with an evolutionary imperative: reproduce and spread as fast as possible. And, seriously, you do not want to be standing in its path. It'll roll right over you, rip you apart from the inside out, turn you from a living human being to a rapidly dying breeding ground for the world's most dangerous fungus. It's to Roberto Diaz, a Pentagon specialist in bioterrorism, to stop the fungus from destroying the world. In his first novel, Koepp, a deservedly renowned screenwriter (Jurassic Park, Mission: Impossible, and many others), does what many screenwriters have failed to do: make a seamless, massively effective transition from the visual medium to the literary. The book doesn't read like a modestly beefed-up pitch for a movie; it's a rich, textured, and downright impossible-to-put-down story that will rock horror-thriller fans' world. It may seem odd to recommend a YA novelist as a read-alike for this grisly genre-blender, but Daniel Kraus, author of Rotters (2011) and Scowler (2013), is just the ticket for readers whose pulses start pounding at the very thought of a killer fungus.--David Pitt Copyright 2019 Booklist

  Kirkus Review

A long-forgotten but deadly organism stored in a deep cave becomes a chilling threat, and a retired bioweapons agent and two security guards are the only ones who can stop it.Koepp is a very successful screenwriter (Jurassic Park, etc.) and director (Premium Rush, etc.) whose film experience is apparent in this propulsive disaster tale. In the prologue, set in 1987, two agents of the U.S. Defense Nuclear Agency, specialists in neutralizing bioweapons and the like, head for a remote Australian town where debris from the Skylab satellite fell. There, Roberto Diaz and Trini Romano find a bizarre catastrophe: An unknown fungus that mutates with spectacular speed has killed everyone in Kiwirrkurra. Diaz and Romano clean up the mess and contain a sample of the organism, which they deliver to a huge cave under the Missouri River bluffs used by the military as a highly secured storage facility. What could go wrong, right? Cut to the present, when the military has sealed the lowest sublevel of the cave, where the fungus is, and sold the rest of the space to a self-storage company. Add a little climate change to raise the underground temperature, and the novel kicks into high gear. Koepp keeps a tight focus on three characters: Diaz, who is called out of retirement to handle the situation secretly, and two guards at the storage facility. Travis "Teacake" Meacham is an ex-convict trying to get his life back on track. Naomi Williams is a college student with two jobs and a sweet little daughter she's raising as a single mother. When the two try to track down an unfamiliar warning signal going off in the facility, they find a nightmare. Koepp builds a tight plot as the three race against time and the fungus, a fictional but all-too-convincing monster of an organism that, if it escapes, could bring on global extinctions. Roberto, Travis, and Naomi are engaging, believable characters. Koepp is skilled at sharp, often humorous dialogue, and Roberto's discovery of the physical barriers to being a hero at age 68 is both darkly funny and an effective source of suspense.Unlikely heroes battle a frightening fungus that could wipe out humanity in this taut, mordant thriller debut. Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
<p>"On every level, Cold Storage is pure, unadulterated entertainment." --Douglas Preston, The New York Times Book Review</p> <p>For fans of The Martian, Dark Matter, and Before the Fall comes an astonishing debut thriller by the screenwriter of Jurassic Park: a wild and terrifying bioterrorism adventure about three strangers who must work together to contain a highly contagious, deadly organism that could destroy all of humanity.</p> <p>They thought it was contained. They were wrong.</p> <p>When Pentagon bioterror operative Roberto Diaz was sent to investigate a suspected biochemical attack, he found something far worse: a highly mutative organism capable of extinction-level destruction. He contained it and buried it in cold storage deep beneath a little-used military repository.</p> <p>Now, after decades of festering in a forgotten sub-basement, the specimen has found its way out and is on a lethal feeding frenzy. Only Diaz knows how to stop it.</p> <p>He races across the country to help two unwitting security guards--one an ex-con, the other a single mother. Over one harrowing night, the unlikely trio must figure out how to quarantine this horror again. All they have is luck, fearlessness, and a mordant sense of humor. Will that be enough to save all of humanity?</p>
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