Debra Shanrahan, a veterinarian in New South Wales, Australia, anticipates a typical day of treating hogs and other livestock. The first hog she treats seems to be suffering from an unusually bad bout of bronchitis. Hardly cause for alarm-until the hog's owner and others who were on the farm turn up dead from suspected pneumonia. Within days, people all over the world are falling suddenly, terminally ill with a virulent strain of flu. Governments either overreact or fail to take any action, but all too soon it becomes undeniably apparent that the unthinkable has happened: the Australian hog's illness has jumped from the swine species to the human species, and there's no known treatment, no cure, and no way to contain it. The pandemic decimates the population in every corner of the globe. But oddly, some people are resisting the virus, even if directly exposed to carriers. Who are these hardy survivors? They are, for the most part, a group that was previously despised, mostly unloved, and only fitfully tolerated. They are the gays and lesbians. Men and women who were once marginalized in many societies are now elevated to be leaders and redeemers who must find their way in a world where the old rules no longer apply. God, or Fate, or the Omniscient Divine has intervened and forever changed the hierarchy. Follow the riveting stories of Debra and others who survive, in their struggle to triumph over biological Armageddon and create a new world.
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