Written by Louise Voss and Mark Edwards – All Fall Down is the sequel to Catch Your Death, which was the first book to be reviewed on Crime Fiction Lover back in 2011, when it was released as a self-published Kindle book. The authors went on to get a book deal, and in All Fall Down the story picks up two years after Catch Your Death. Heroine Kate Maddox is trying to lead a normal life with her partner Paul, and her son Jack. She is giving a lecture on deadly viruses when a face from the past turns up, bringing chilling news. Harley informs Kate that a new strain of Watoto, the virus that killed Kate’s parents when she was a young child, is loose in Los Angeles. As she’s a leading expert on the Watoto virus he needs her help to find a cure.
However, Harley has lied to Kate to get her to travel to LA, telling her that the virus is contained on an Indian reservation. In reality it is spreading through the city and to other parts of America – fast. Then when a bomb rips through a hotel killing many top scientists, including Kate’s research partner Dr Isaac, she begins to think there is more to the virus than Harley is letting on and it soon becomes clear someone will do anything to stop a cure being found.
After much deliberation Kate agrees to fly to Los Angeles to join a group of scientists working in a secret laboratory to find a cure for the new strain of Watoto. Both Paul and Jack join Kate on the flight to America but once they land Jack is sent to live with his father in Dallas, and when Paul is told he can’t join Kate at the laboratory he escapes to hunt down a man he has been trying to find since his twin brother Stephen was murdered. What they don’t realise is that the virus is spreading across the country and with a 99 per cent kill rate, soon it will be too late.
As the story progresses it become clear that the pandemic was started by a group of damaged women whose leader is called Angelica. They are determined to destroy humanity and enter what they describe as The Golden Age.
As a fan of any storyline where the end of the world is threatened, I loved this book. All Fall Down can be compared to the film Contagion, with the a deadly virus threatening the lives of millions, but is much more exciting. I loved the way this book is set out. Kate, Paul and Jack are each on their own missions within America and all the while the deadly virus could infect them at any minute. The chapters switch between each of their storylines, providing you with more information as the book progresses. As their journeys advanced I formed an increasing attachment to the main characters, worrying more with each page that Kate might not find a cure for the new strain of Watoto, and they might not make it back to England alive.
Although there are some references to events in Catch Your Death, and it helps to have read the first book, this certainly isn’t a necessity. The only downside to this novel is that, at times, there are a few too many coincidences. However, the excitement more than makes up for this.
CFL Rating: 5 Stars