The Nash family is close-knit. Tom is a popular teacher, father of two teens: Eli, a hocky star and girl magnet, and his sister Deenie, a diligent student. Their seeming stability, however, is thrown into chaos when Deenie's best friend is struck by a terrifying, unexplained seizure in class. Rumors of a hazardous outbreak spread through the family, school and community. As hysteria and contagion swell, a series of tightly held secrets emerges, threatening to unravel friendships, families and the town's fragile idea of security.
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I haven't read any other books by Abbott, but something about this description and the cover of this book drew me in. As a mysterious illness slowly starts to impact a high school class, everyone is questioning will I be next? Abbott tells the story from each character's perspective. The confusion, the uncertainty, the gossip, the social media impact is spot on. It's easy for the reader to relate with either the students or the parents or just as someone in the community. I could see this book adapted into a long CSI episode - all the elements can be found. There is even a little science fiction/fantasy element to this book. A few times I got the chills from reading a passage here and there. In the end the root cause is because of basic human emotions. High school never changes when it comes to girls who like boys and boys who like girls.