More Deadly Than War: The Hidden History of the Spanish Flu and the First World War

4 CDs. 4:41 hrs. Listening Library. May 2018. ISBN 9780525529194. $38. digital download.
Gr 5–8—Davis's well-documented and fascinating study looks at the causes and consequences of the most horrific pandemic in modern history. The influenza pandemic began in the spring of 1918, and struck at a time when men and machinery were mobilizing for war around the world. With the men living and traveling in close quarters, the flu was spread through the ranks of every country, infecting a third of the earth's population. Davis uses firsthand reports from patients, medical professionals, historians, and celebrities as he demonstrates how the war and the illness were intertwined, personalizing a chapter that is often overlooked by history books. Since the book is so heavy on facts, and the audio is missing the helpful and interesting photographs, period documents, and time lines, it reads rather flat; to his credit, MacLeod Andrews does his best to add emotion and to vary his inflection for quotations. The "Milestones in Medical History" timelines are read by Adenrele Ojo, which sets them apart from the text.
VERDICT A comprehensive and fascinating study of a medical and social disaster, and of the relationship between health and war, perhaps best read in print to appreciate the firsthand documents and illustrations.

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