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PLAGUE - Has Arrived! (And it's Just as Lethal as I'd Hoped it Would Be!)

Kent Book PlagueBy Kent Heckenlively

Last Thursday I received copies of the book I co-wrote with Dr. Judy Mikovits, PLAGUE - One Scientist's Intrepid Search for the Truth about Human Retroviruses and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS), Autism, and Other Diseases.

To say I'd been worried about what the final product would look like and how it would read is something of an understatement.  The day before it arrived I had a splitting headache, felt faint all through the teaching of my science classes, and was just generally grumpy to everybody around me.

But I didn't have to worry.

PLAGUE is everything I'd hoped it would be.  It is a smart, compassionate account of various disease communities and Dr. Mikovits fighting for answers to chronic diseases like ME/CFS and autism.  I can't help but think there are a confluence of forces, such as Sharyl Attkisson's recent book, STONEWALLED, which are supporting some of the core issues at the heart of PLAGUE.

It's been said lately that there is a great political divide in America between conservatives and liberals, but I think there's a growing unity of belief that many of the important issues of the day are being "brought" to us by special interests.  Whether your political bogeyman is big government or big business, we can all agree that having the two of these join forces is bad for everybody. 

As a science teacher and an attorney, I have always believed in evidence and reason, regardless of what the noisy crowd might proclaim.  In both science and law we have always admired those who fought the powerful voices of their day in the search for truth.  Sometimes that truth is about the guilt or innocence of a single person, or about humanity's true place in the cosmos.

If there is anything which has saddened me in chronicling the story of Dr. Mikovits, it's how rare a thing courage is in science these days.  Maybe I shouldn't be surprised.  Maybe it's always been this way.  Would Galileo have been forced to endure the persecution of the Catholic church if more of his fellow scientists had stood up for him?  What would have happened if Europe's scientists had marched to Rome and demanded that they would share whatever punishment was meted out to Galileo?

And yet it is those scientists who took the easy road who will be forgotten.  Those who clung to their positions, claiming it was the "smart" thing to do will never endure in the imagination.  Cowardice has a short shelf life and spoils quickly in the presence of truth.

PLAGUE and the story of the courage, intelligence and integrity of Dr. Mikovits is one you will long remember.  You can get it NOW from Amazon, or wait until Tuesday November 18 when it will be in bookstores EVERYWHERE.

Kent Book PlagueKent Heckenlively is a Founding Contributing Editor to Age of Autism and co-author with Dr. Judy Mikovits of Plague: One Scientist's Intrepid Search for the Truth about Human Retroviruses and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Autism, and Other Diseases.   Release date for bookstores is November 18, 2014.  Visit his website at Plague The Book. You can order the book HERE. (And be reading it the next day!)



I just finished reading this book which was impressive and a real page turner. I wish there was a bit more at the end about any treatments which may have worked even for a few of these patients. Are there any? Even anecdotally, has anything been effective? If so, please write a bit about that for A of A. Thanks and really interesting book.


Congrats, Kent!


From the ME Association in UK:

What is ME/CFS?

It should be explained that there are a number of different names for what is an illness of uncertain cause affecting many thousands of people. Currently it is estimated that some 250,000 people in Britain are affected by this illness.

- Myalgic Encephalopathy or “ME” (a term which The ME Association feels is more appropriate than the original, Myalgic Encephalomyelitis)

- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or “CFS”

- Post-Viral Fatigue Syndrome or “PVFS”

- Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome or “CFIDS”

All types of people at all ages are affected. Severe and debilitating fatigue, painful muscles and joints, disordered sleep, gastric disturbances, poor memory and concentration are commonplace. In many cases, onset is linked to a viral infection. Other triggers may include an operation or an accident, although some people experience a slow, insidious onset.



@Wishing for Recovery

Is M.E. the same as Chronic Fatigue? Answer is No. The symptoms as regard the Fatigue (not the correct term BTW for what is extreme cellular exhaustion i.e. imagine waking up one morning in a lead suit) are much the same, but the IBS and nausea, arrhythmia, joint pain and extremes of Blood Pressure (and other symptoms) are not. Also the start of M.E. can be very sudden and dramatic. CFS can be slow to develop. There is a lot of confusion in the medical world about the distinctions.

Wishing for recovery for all

What is M E? Is it the same as chronic fatigue syndrome? Can't wait to get your book!

Kent Heckenlively

Dear Readers,

Please remember to put at least a 3-4 sentence review on Amazon when you finish. Hopefully you give it 5 stars! I am hoping to get 25 reviews up by Tuesday, November 18, the day it will be in bookstores. Thanks!



Just received my copy, Kent. Can't wait to dig in!!


I started reading it and it's so good! Extremely interesting and also reads like a good thriller, with strong doses of complex science and medicine in the mix.

Kent Heckenlively

PLAGUE has its first customer review!

By JT on November 10, 2014

Amazing book! I've followed Dr. Judy Mikovits since the publication in Science in 2009. Those who followed the saga were able to view many of the events live and participate in on-line chat. Many patients are professionals (MD's, PhD's, lawyers, etc) willing and capable of learning the science behind their illness so they could discuss various events as they unfolded. They were also willing to learn immunology, genetics, and virology to fully understand the ramifications of the XMRV and other human gamma retroviruses.

Many knew the impact the Dr. Judy Mikovits' publication had. The majority of the public in the US have absolutely no clue. You will NOT have seen this covered on the evening news. Just like the CDC and the White House told the US that "we have this covered" when it came to Ebola, they do not have this covered either.

I encourage everyone to read this book. It will not be an easy read for some but the authors have made tremendous effort to make this book understandable to most people.

Anyone who has an interest in auto-immune diseases, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, gulf war syndrome, autism, vaccines, and how academic/government research and government agencies handle these topics will be enlightened by this book.

Kudos to Dr. Judy Mikovits and Kent Heckenlively for writing this phenomenal book. Let's hope the masses read this book, are enlightened, and demand accountability for what has transpired.


Thankyou for this book Kent. I have already ordered a copy and am looking forward to reading it.
I have had M.E. for 8 years. I recall Andy Wakefield's reply to a member of the audience at one of his lectures when asked 'Why don't adults get Autism?' He said 'They do. It's called M.E.' Many of my symptoms mimic those of autism. In particular are the brain, gut and bowel inflammations. There IS a connection somewhere.

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