Home 5 News 5 Virus called ‘Wuhan-400’ Appeared in 1981 Koontz novel

Virus called ‘Wuhan-400’ Appeared in 1981 Koontz novel

by | Mar 3, 2020 | News

It must be one of the world’s greatest literary coincidences.  A 1981 novel by American horror writer Dean Koontz features a Chinese virus called Wuhan-400.  It tells the story of a mother who discovers her son Danny is being kept in a military facility after being infected with a man-made microorganism called ‘Wuhan-400’.

A character in the novel talks about ‘a Chinese scientist named Li Chen [who defects] to the United States carrying a diskette record of China’s most important and dangerous new biological weapon in a decade.  They call the stuff ‘Wuhan-400’ because it was developed at their RDNA labs outside the city of Wuhan, and it was the four-hundreth viabe strain of man-made microrganisms created at that research centre.  Wuhan-400 is a perfect weapon.  It afflicts only human beings…’

The internet is now awash with stories on the coincidence and readers on Amazon are all pitching in with their expressions of amazement.  One writes: ‘Is this book purely fictional ???? when it is describing a viral infection that is now affecting countries.  And that Wuhan is stated as the country it was started in !!!!!  How could a writer possibly know about man made viruses in 1981 that are now killing people in the same way that is described in this book ?????’

Some have suggested that the fiction RDNA research centre could be referring to the Wuhan Institute of Virology which is where China’s only level four biosafety laboratory is located.  Indian Congress leader Manish Tewari posted a cover of the book on twitter and asked “Is coronavirus a biological weapon developed by the Chinese called Wuhan-400?’

Meanwhile, in the publishing industry – and elsewhere – the situation is changing literally by the hour.  Macmillan US, HarperCollins US, Simon & Schuster US, Ingram and Amazon have all pulled out of the London Bok Fair , due to begin on Tuesday, 10 March, but at the time of writing (2 March) the London Book Fair said it would be going ahead.  Additionally, Livre Paris in France has been cancelled and the Bologna Book Fair has been postponed by six weeks.

Recent News

23May
Alice Oseman’s Auction Supports Gaza Aid Efforts

Alice Oseman’s Auction Supports Gaza Aid Efforts

Alice Oseman, bestselling author of the YA Heartstopper books, has raised nearly £20,000 for children in Gaza in a special auction organised by Save the Children.  Not Alone: The Alice Osman Fundraiser for Children in Gaza included Alice Oseman bookplates and Heartstopper enamel pins as well as ‘signed and doodled’ Alice Oseman books.  Save the […]

23May
‘Kairos’ Claims Victory at International Booker Prize 2024

‘Kairos’ Claims Victory at International Booker Prize 2024

The 2024 International Booker Prize has been claimed by “Kairos,” a poignant German novel delving into a tumultuous love affair set in 1980s Germany. Authored by Jenny Erpenbeck and masterfully translated by Michael Hofmann, this literary gem captivates readers with its exploration of love against the backdrop of political turmoil.   Eleanor Watchel, chair of […]

23May
Lord Byron’s Lost Memoirs Were “Evil”

Lord Byron’s Lost Memoirs Were “Evil”

  A letter describing the contents of Lord Byron’s lost memoirs revealing how he “set his mind to evil” has been discovered in a university library. It was written by Elizabeth Palgrave, from Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, in 1823 after a visit to a publishing house. The “bad boy” poet gave his memoirs to a friend […]

Related Posts

‘Kairos’ Claims Victory at International Booker Prize 2024

‘Kairos’ Claims Victory at International Booker Prize 2024

The 2024 International Booker Prize has been claimed by "Kairos," a poignant German novel delving into a tumultuous love affair set in 1980s Germany. Authored by Jenny Erpenbeck and masterfully translated by Michael Hofmann, this literary gem captivates readers with...

Lord Byron’s Lost Memoirs Were “Evil”

Lord Byron’s Lost Memoirs Were “Evil”

  A letter describing the contents of Lord Byron's lost memoirs revealing how he "set his mind to evil" has been discovered in a university library. It was written by Elizabeth Palgrave, from Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, in 1823 after a visit to a publishing house....

Healing Fiction: A New Genre Emerges

Healing Fiction: A New Genre Emerges

We’ve had chic lit, cosy crime and romantasy – now make way for ‘healing fiction’, the latest genre to be identified by publishers.  In a fascinating article in the Bookseller, Justine Taylor, managing editor at the Zaffre Publishing Group, described healing fiction...

Previous Next
Close
Test Caption
Test Description goes like this

Pin It on Pinterest