Goodreads: Condition Black
Genres: Medical Thriller; Military Thriller
Expected Publication date: April 13, 2021
EVAN WEYLAND, a brilliant research scientist tasked with developing new technologies to fight cancer, sees the world through the lens of someone on the Autism Spectrum. His guiding light is his wife, Marie-a globally recognized war correspondent. When she returns home from Syria deathly ill with an unknown disease, Evan believes his research may be the key to unlocking the cure. However, when his superiors refuse his request for help, Evan’s single-minded love for Marie drives him to take matters into his own hands. It is a decision with far greater consequences than he could possibly fathom.
BILLY VICK, a Captain in the Army’s Criminal Investigation Command, is a combat veteran unable to leave the horrors of war behind. Only the love of his family and a sense of absolute justice keeps him grounded. When Billy’s unit becomes aware of a US-sanctioned airstrike on a civilian settlement in Syria and an eye-witness reporter comatose with an unknown illness, he fears the worst. An unethical military project thought mothballed has resurfaced, and a civilian, Evan Weyland, maybe about to inadvertently unleash it upon the world. It’s a mistake that could cost the lives of millions.
Pitted against each other in a game of chess-like deception and intrigue, with time running out, both men must come to terms with the magnitude of what’s at stake-and what each is willing to sacrifice to win.
“That’s Evan Weyland,” George said. “He comes through here all the time, dropping his wife off at the airport.”
“What’s wrong with him?” the soldier asked.
“He’s harmless,” George replied. “He’s on the spectrum. A bit odd, but clever as hell. He’s a researcher at John Hopkins. The guy doesn’t deserve a gun in the chest. You get me?”
“Yes, sir, but if he’s autistic shouldn’t he carry a medical card or something?”
“A medical card? Why? Do they make you carry one that says asshole on it?”Chapter 3, pg. 28-29
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As scientific advancements occur in our own world, it’s a bit surreal to catch a glimpse into a world we might be heading towards. While we might not end up living in a country under martial law, the medical and general scientific advancements in this story are real life goals. Medical advancements that allow us to fight cancer – and potentially any diseases that come our way? Absolutely! Better understanding the human mind and how it works? Yes, please!
This story is fast paced and action packed. While a game of chess between a John Hopkins researcher and an army veteran might not seem the most thrilling, it is. When it’s a fight between life and death – of not only yourself and your loved ones but everyone everywhere – you can’t afford to make mistakes. Every action has consequences and every step you take counts.
If you’re looking for a feel good book that’s going to make you smile, this isn’t it. But. If you’re looking for a thrilling, action packed read, you should check this story out.
Added to this the fact that Evan is on the spectrum, I truly believe that this book has amazing neuro-divergent representation. I cannot speak for Autistic people as I am not Autistic myself, but as a neuro-divergent person myself I definitely related to the way Evan looks at and interacts with the world. While I read I found myself nodding along to some of the ways that Evan dealt with being over stimulated and hyper fixating on things. More books need amazing representation like this.