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A book review of Infectious: Pathogens and How We Fight Them by Dr. John S. Tregoning

A book review of Infectious: Pathogens and How We Fight Them by Dr. John S. Tregoning

Stars: ****

OneWorld Publications (2021)
Popular Science
384 pages

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This post contains affiliate links.

Summary: Nature wants you dead. Not just you, but your children and everyone you have ever met and everyone they have ever met; in fact, everyone. It wants you to cough and sneeze and poop yourself into an early grave. It wants your blood vessels to burst and pustules to explode all over your body. And – until recently – it was really good at doing this…

Covid-19 may be only the first of many modern pandemics. The subject of infection and how to fight it grows more urgent every day. How do pathogens cause disease? And what tools can we give our bodies to do battle?

Dr John S. Tregoning has dedicated his career to answering these questions. Infectious uncovers fascinating success stories in immunology and virology, making this book not only a vital overview of infection, but also a hopeful story of ongoing human ingenuity.


This book starts off with the brief history and science of microbiology which includes why we don’t always get sick, the microbiome, immunology, epidemiology and diagnostics.

Part 2 covers prevention, vaccines, antibiotic, antiviral, antifungal and antiparasitics. Also bad medicine and the future.

That may not sound like a lot but each topic is covered well and the book is almost 400 pages. Most of it is written for the lay person to understand. It is no text book, that’s for sure.

I found the book very informative. It talks a lot about COVID-19 but not only about that. If the pandemic has made you want to know more about how viruses work, this is a great book. It’s nice to read about viruses and epidemiology from someone who knows what they are talking about and isn’t from a vaccine company or government.

The book was published in the UK and as such is written from a UK perspective. Just an FYI. The book was also written during 2020, the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. So at the beginning of each chapter, a timeline is given of when he was writing that chapter, along with where he was and Global COVID cases and deaths.

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About Kathleen

I've been a nonfiction lover for as long as I can remember. I love children's nonfiction as well and love to share my knowledge and the books I gained them from, with the world. I wish more people would give nonfiction a chance.