Nestled near the Hamptons, the fashionable summer playground of America's rich and famous, and in the shadow of New York City, lies an unimposing 840-acre island unidentified on most maps. On the few on which it can be found, Plum Island is marked red or yellow, and stamped U.S. governmentrestricted or dangerous animal diseases. Though many people live the good life within a scant mile or two from its shores, few know the name of this pork chop-shaped island. Even fewer can say whether it is inhabited, or why it doesn't exist on the map. That's all about to change. Lab 257: The Disturbing Story of the Government's Secret Plum Island Germ Laboratory blows the lid off the stunning true nature and checkered history of Plum Island. It shows that the seemingly bucolic island on the edge of the largest population center in the United States is a ticking biological time bomb that none of us can safely ignore.
Based on innumerable declassified government documents, scores of in-depth interviews, and access to Plum Island itself, this is an eye-opening, suspenseful account of a federal government germ laboratory gone terribly wrong. For the first time, Lab 257 takes you deep inside this secret world and presents startling revelations including virus outbreaks, biological meltdowns, infected workers who were denied assistance in diagnosis by Plum Island brass, the periodic flushing of contaminated raw sewage into area waters, and the insidious connections between Plum Island, Lyme disease, and the deadly 1999 West Nile virus outbreak.
An exploration of the complex world of microbiology, viruses, and bacteria, Lab 257 also shows how the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which ran Plum Island for the last half century, is far more than wholesome grade-A eggs and the food pyramid. The book probes what's in store for Plum Island's new owner, the Department of Homeland Security, in this age of bioterrorism. And for those interested in questions of national security and safety, it is a call to action for those concerned with protecting present and future generations from preventable biological catastrophes.
Lab 257 will change forever our current understanding of Plum Island -- a place that is, in the words of one insider, "a biological Three Mile Island."
Is there a connection between Lyme disease, West Nile virus and the Department of Homeland Security's laboratories on Plum Island? According to Michael Carroll's apparently thorough research, yes there is, and those aren't the only concerns - add to these biological meltdowns, infected workers denied assistance in diagnosis, flushing of contaminated sewage into local waters, and it's difficult to be anything but concerned. Is Plum Island an accident waiting to happen? It would seem so. (Reviewed by BookBrowse Review Team).
Kam Aures - MostlyFiction.com
Carroll's book leaves no stone unturned. He has thoroughly researched the history and present day workings of the laboratories and operations on Plum Island. He drew his information from a variety of sources, including speaking with employees past and present and utilizing the Freedom of Information Act to extract information from the appropriate government agencies. The way that he skillfully assembles all of this research into a work that reads as easy as fiction is remarkable. Carroll is a very talented investigative writer and LAB 257 is by far the most interesting and engaging piece of non-fiction that I have ever read.
Is there a connection between Lyme disease and Plum Island research?...And what about West Nile virus, which also suddenly appeared in close proximity to Plum Island?...The author acknowledges that the times demand that the U.S. have a research facility like the one at Plum Island and ends this provocative book with a list of reasonable, well-conceived suggestions on how to make the research lab safe, or at least safer. Readers will hope that someone takes notice.
Mario M. Cuomo, former Governor of New York
If we're lucky, someone in the media will read this carefully researched, chilling expose of a potential catastrophe and force the government to do something about it. If not, Mike Carroll's brilliant work will have been wasted and we may be the victims, once again, of government inadvertence.
Nelson DeMille, bestselling author of Plum Island and Up Country
If you lost sleep after reading The Hot Zone, then Michael Christopher Carroll's LAAB 257 will keep you awake all night. One of the best pieces of investigative reporting you'll read this year. LAB 257 is must-reading for the post-9/11 world.'
Lowell P. Weicker, Jr., former Governor of Connecticut
Lab 257 proves that scientific fact on Plum Island can indeed be stranger than science fiction. Mike Carroll has the uncanny ability to transport the reader inside the frightening world of Plum Island.
Recent Reader Reviews
Rated of 5
by mb1 Informative coverage of a sensitive topic Book did a nice job of covering a sensitive topic that most people are unaware of. Biological weapons are by far some of the most insidious potentially damaging weapons in the modern arsenal. It should not surprise anyone that our government is... Read More
Rated of 5
by Ranger X Lyme Disease didn't appear until 1975 Dee, I hate to outright call you a liar, but Lyme disease wasn't called such or discovered until the mid- to late-1970s.
Rated of 5
by The Arrow There's even more information that he missed finding Read the book in a very short while. Excellent. May only have scratched the surface of the problem. There may have been, as he suggests, collusion among the very 'Hallowed Ivy Covered' Halls of our most revered academic institutions ,the very... Read More
Rated of 5
by Dee Complete Nonsense! I have a book published by the Government that talks about Lyme Disease in the 1940's. The book I have talks about the Lyme Spirochetes and tick bites and all the diseases it causes.
Obviously, Mr. Carroll did not do his research. Shame on Mr.... Read More
Review (not rated)
Lab 257 is a powerful indictment of our government's secret plan to weaponize diseases. In this book the author presents strong evidence that one of the silent plagues, Lyme disease, came from this very lab on Plum Island. It is strong stuff and... Read More
Rated of 5
by bill june
Book was out of this world to be honest im not really a book person every book i pick up i read 10 pages and never finish.This book i couldnt put down,this guys work is simply amazing.Mike Carroll is someone with potential for greatness
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