We are living in very challenging times in the midst of a global pandemic. Pandemics are tragic times and have featured through the centuries from the Justinian Plague to Coronavirus. But plagues and pestilence have also brought transformational change to the world from the rights of peasants to new inventions. Read more about the history around great epidemics, plagues and pestilence with this book list.
The Viral Storm- the Dawn of a New Pandemic Age by Nathan Wolfe. Published by Penguin.
An exploration of why modern life makes us vulnerable to global pandemics.
Pandemic 1918 by Catharine Arnold. Published by Michael O Mara
A fascinating insight into the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918.
Pale Rider- The Spanish Flu of 1918 and how it Changed the World by Laura Spinney. Published by Jonathan Cape.
Another detailed history of the Spanish Flu and how it affected the world.
The Pandemic Century: A History of Contagion from the Spanish Flu to Covid-19 by Mark Honigsbaum. Published by Ebury. Traces a century of pandemics and their impact on the world.
The Black Death- The intimate story of a village in crisis 1345-1350 by John Hatcher. Published by Phoenix.
Tells the story of the Suffolk village of Walsham in 1348 as the Black Death arrives, and how it affects ordinary people.
No Time to Lose- A Life in Pursuit of Deadly Viruses by Peter Piot. Published by Norton
This brilliant book talks about the pursuit and discovery of new and deadly viruses including ebola.
La Peste– Albert Camus
Camus’ classic story of a plague outbreak in Algeria was thought to be a metaphor for the Nazis in World War Two.
The Last Hours- Minette Walters
A striking work of fiction about a medieval village in Dorset England during the throes of the Black Death. There’s also a sequel on my reading list- The Turn of Midnight.
Got another good book recommendation to add to the list? Let me know and I’ll add it.