• by Michael Palmer
  • Narrated by Michael Palmer
  • 13 hrs and 4 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The master of medical suspense brings us yet another novel of controversy, biology, and human greed. Internist and emergency specialist Matt Rutledge has spent the last five years of his life in Belinda, West Virginia, trying to find the links between the deaths of his father and his (Matt's) wife. He suspects the Belinda Coke and Coal Company has released toxic chemicals into the environment that have caused the "Belinda Syndrome," a miasma of symptoms that include violent and deadly paranoia in some, Ebola-like hemorrhaging in others. But he lacks proof. Meanwhile, two women come to Belinda, each pursued by violent death. Together with Matt Rutledge, they must get to the bottom of the "Belinda Syndrome" and avert a potential plague, while under mortal threat themselves.


What the Critics Say

"[Palmer's] most riveting book yet, leaving hardly enough time to take a breath." (Denver Post)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

A great audiobook by my favortie medical author!

Palmer has long been my favorite author in the medical thriller genre. "Fatal" was one of the few books I had not yet read. I was happy to find the unabridged version on Audible (I hate abridged audiobooks).
"Fatal" did not disappoint. The interplay between the characters, the medical and political corruption, and the seemingly insurmountable challenge faced by the hero... this is classic Palmer. I've read most of his other books (paperbacks), and this is my first audiobook by Palmer I've listened to. The narrator did a very good job, I have no complaints. He carried the story along very nicely.
It's a great story, about a corrupt coal mine and a killer vaccine. Sort of two sub-plots that play along side by side. The author keeps both stories moving nicely till they intersect at the end.
I loved this audiobook, but I'm disappointed that his other audiobooks available are all abridged versions.
The "Extreme Measures" audiobook is only 3 hours? Give me a break!
Please audible, release more unabridged Palmer books!
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- Barry

I wish I could UN-read this book

Book: I bought this because of the good reviews. BIG mistake. I have no idea what the others saw in this novel, but I think reading it caused me to lose brain cells. I wish I could UN-read this book.

Our hero, Dr. Matt Rutledge (Harvard), is as about bright as a box of coal. He spends much time not paying a lick of attention to his newfound girlfriend Dr I forget her name, (Yale) who IS very bright, but, I suppose, because she is a mere female, does not warrant his serious attention (other than THAT attention).

He thus does one dumb thing after the other until the reader wants to just grab him and slap him silly.

The author attempts to weave multiple sub-plots which all come together toward the end... in a cave... where we find all these stray ends (characters) miraculously alive and waiting for the book to end. Umm... Not. They did not work as sub-plots and the way the author weaves them together at the end requires the reader to just set aside ALL logic and just "believe" that this could happen. If you just have to read this, at least turn off one hemisphere of your brain to make it more enjoyable. Contrived and believable only if you have never read a real medical thriller. Grade 1 STAR - only because ZERO was not available.

READER: Average at best... couple of good characterizations... Makes no difference anyway as this book could not be made good regardless of reader. GRADE C

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- Tim "For simply incredible prose and superb fiction check out the Louise Penny novels featuring Chief Inspector Gamache."

Book Details

  • Release Date: 09-15-2003
  • Publisher: Books on Tape