When we first meet Canadian artist Kate, her city is reeling in a snow storm, and everything seems to be going wrong. Her husband, Jon, suddenly falls ill.
Nobody answers at 911, her neighbors aren't around to help. She reaches her dad on the phone, but he can't help. Then her toddler son falters as well, succumbing to "the disease."
Soon, Kate is sorely affected by something, vomiting continually, her body wracked with fever and covered with pustules. She somehow survives. Her family is dead, her neighbors and friends are dead ... disintegrated and desiccated. Kate is a sole survivor. She makes a connection with Thomas, 7-year-old boy who calls her but doesn't talk.
Okay, now that you know that, I'm going to do you a favor, and suggest that you skip the first third of the book. There's really nothing interesting to read, just mindless drivel designed to give you insight on Kate's mental state of being, but not doing a very good job of it.
How she got from Canada to St. Augustine, Florida, between Chapters 9 and 10 is not explained. Neither is her sudden communication with a resurrected imaginary childhood friend, Ping, who lives in Texas.
And then there is Jack, a former doctor convicted of murder and sexual abuse of a young boy, incarcerated in a maximum security prison. One day, about four months after the "event," he shows up on a beach and meets Kate. They become intimate and he falls in love. He wants to just stay there and live out their lives; she wants to search out Thomas and Ping. Her telepathic connection with Ping pays off. It turns out she's met him before.
Frankly, I skimmed over the last half of the book, and it was a chore even to do that. In fact, I quit reading before getting three-quarters of the way through. I give it 0 bookmarks with a recommendation that you save your dollar and consign Ping to the "Forget It" bin. It's awful.
Amazon Digital Services, Kindle edition ($1.00 list)