what literary elements are used in the book Vector by Robin Cook?

can someone help please

4 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    I hope my time and your's is not wasted and that you find this useful. Good Luck.

    Vector is the 1999 suspense thriller book written by Robin Cook.



    Author Robin Cook had predicted bioterrorist attack in `Vector'.(Knight Ridder Newspapers)

    In 1999 Robin Cook had an idea.

    In 2001 it came true.

    Cook's two-year-old thriller "Vector" recounts an imaginary but technically credible tale of a conspiracy to kill hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers by releasing a highly infectious strain of anthrax into a government building's ventilation system, and later by using a stolen pest-control truck to spray the deadly bacteria around Central Park. The book's jacket billed it as the "latest urban nightmare."

    As Cook acknowledged in a recent telephone interview, "It turns out to be remarkably prescient."

    In the opening scene of "Vector," one of the villains, a disgruntled immigrant taxi driver named Yuri who once worked as a technician in the Soviet Union's massive germ-warfare program, tests the organism's potency by sending it through the mail along with a cleaning-service advertisement.

    The recipient he has chosen, a Manhattan rug importer, unwittingly opens the envelope in his office and out spills a cloud of glittering stars and dust. The rug importer rapidly develops a high fever, chest cough, headache and muscle aches. He is hospitalized and within a day dies of pulmonary anthrax, a diagnosis that "seemed beyond the realm of possibility" to the book's protagonist, a New York City medical examiner. The finding sets the medical examiner off on a frantic hunt for the source.

    All the reported anthrax exposures in New York, Washington and Florida are believed linked to spores sent by mail to offices where those exposed worked or visited. But Cook, a physician who became a best-selling novelist with "Coma" in 1977, takes no pleasure from his prophetic parallel.

    "One of the things that makes me feel uncomfortable is that the book starts out with anthrax going in an envelope," he said.

    He doesn't believe anyone is using his novel as a template for terror, though, and notes that all the specialized information he relied on was in the public domain.

    Cook decided on the theme after attending several lectures on bioterrorism at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta five years ago. He concluded that it was an issue the public should know more about and set about researching it for his 21st book.

    "There were a number of people who were really knowledgeable and committed" to addressing bioterrorism, he said. "But there has been a lot of foot-dragging and lethargy."

    Before restrictions were imposed in 1997, samples of anthrax bacteria were routinely sold by American laboratories for research purposes. In "Vector," Yuri, the Soviet bioweapons veteran, produces his own in a basement lab, using soil from an Oklahoma cattle yard sent to him by Ku Klux Klansmen.

    In real life, an estimated 60,000 people were employed by Biopreparat, the secret Soviet biological offensive program, and Cook was intrigued how many were left unemployed after their country collapsed in 1991. While researching his novel, he consulted one of them, Ken Abelik, who defected in 1992 after serving as first deputy chief of Biopreparat.

    Cook also went to the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases at Fort Detrick, Md. And he visited the New York City Mayor's Office of Emergency Management, whose brand-new emergency-preparedness center had just opened _ in the World Trade Center.

    He said he set the novel in New York, where he grew up, because he regards it as a "metaphor" for American power.

    "From my research at the time, I knew there was going to be a major terrorist event in a place like New York," he said. "It seemed that New York was going to be hit."

    Cook speculates that the perpetrators of the recent U.S. anthrax exposures are disgruntled home-grown lunatics who have enough knowledge to be dangerous and are seeking to create panic and anarchy. While he does think the perpetrators may be relying on technical expertise from abroad, he does not see a role for foreign militants prepared to die.

    "In `Vector,' I wasn't envisioning a suicide terrorist," he said. "I was envisioning terrorists who had a sense of self-preservation."

    The book's plot allows the villains enough time to escape New York before the magnitude of their work becomes evident. Yuri plans to return to Russia on a commercial flight, while his two American antigovernment confederates arrange a chain of safe houses through an online network of sympathetic militiamen across the central and western United States.

    As city officials struggle to contain the panic that breaks out as the book reaches its conclusion, they acknowledge that their planning, exercises, counterintelligence and response system had been inadequate.

    In an author's note at the end of the book, Cook wrote that what his characters say about biological weapons and terrorism is true. Of the potential for a major bioterrorism attack in the United States or Europe, he warned more than two years ago: It is not a question of whether one will occur, but when.


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  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

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  • Amanda
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    I'd rate it a 4. I like the way Robin Cook weaves a tale. Many of the things he writes about feel as though they could actually happen.

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  • Frosty
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago


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