This is a near-future evolutionary thriller, in which ancient viruses activated a decade past have produced a generation of Virus Children worldwide. The maturing of the adolescent SHEVA children is terrifying, exciting, and I was immediately hooked, and followed the five main characters along their trails of fear, worry, deadends and discovery with dreadful anticipation. This will probably rate as one of my books of the year, not only for the tense enjoyment, but also for changing my perception of genetics.
I hadn't read the prequel, Darwin's Radio, and didn't need to, but I borrowed it immediately so I could see how the story had unfolded.
Mark Augustine had been unable to fulfill that promise, at first because of what he thought he knew, but in later years becaue of grim political reality.