After his flirtation with the straight procedural in New Orleans Requiem (1994), Donaldson's fifth leaps back into the swift currents of the medical thriller with this deadly-virus yarn. Forensic psychologist Kit Franklyn first gets a whiff of the coming plague when she goes to Grandma O's restaurant to meet an anonymous older admirer who's been sending her roses--and who collapses at his table as he's rising to greet her. But the virus has already claimed another victim, and it's threatening everybody who comes into contact with the corpses--in other words, all the regulars in Medical Examiner Andy Broussard's office. Determined to track down the infection's source, Kit asks one question too many in the wrong place and ends up getting kidnapped along with her steady, Teddy LaBiche, both of them put on ice by a pair of brutal killers who act as if they don't think the virus is moving fast enough. Looks like Andy will have to come charging to the rescue--if he isn't fighting for his own life in a hospital bed while his colleagues watch his vital signs flicker. Virus Du Jour with homicide obbligato--a sleek, fast-moving, curiously lightweight suspenser that never lets the deadly menace escape its pages and threaten the world as we know it.