If you’re an active social media user or you’ve spent some time surfing the internet about COVID-19, you’ve surely come across the name Dean Koontz. You might be confused about the tweets or Facebook posts and wondering what a writer has to do with the raging pandemic. Not to worry, we’ll explain it all in detail here, and as usual, you’ll learn a lot more, so let’s get to it!
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Who is Dean Koontz?
For a bit of background, let’s talk about who the man in question is. Dean Koontz is an American author who has written lots of popular books in the suspense thriller and science fiction niches. Some of his well-known works include Demon Seed, Seize the Night and Odd Thomas among many others.
What does any of this have to do with COVID-19?
Okay, here’s where it gets interesting. In 1981, Dean Koontz published a novel titled ‘The Eye of Darkness’. In the novel, Dombey, one of the characters, talked about a biological weapon developed as a virus from China that was called Wuhan 400. This virus could be transmitted from person to person and had the ability to make people sick and eventually die. Seeing the similarities? For proper context, here’s a picture of the page and the book itself:
As expected, this got a lot of attention and had set off various social media discussions after it was put online, due to all the similarities with the Coronavirus. Lots of people saw the book as a prediction of the virus and there were jokes about whether or not Dean Koontz was psychic or clairvoyant.
Truly, the Wuhan virus described in the book has some similarities with COVID-19, considering that the specific city of Wuhan was mentioned which is actually where the Coronavirus originated from. Also, the human to human transmission pattern checks out as well. However, here is where the similarities end.
First off, the virus in ‘The Eyes of Darkness’ is described as a biological weapon, built, and designed by Chinese scientists to be used against other countries of the world. Researchers from both the West and China have repeatedly debunked claims that COVID-19 is a synthetically engineered virus.
Also, the Wuhan 400 in Koontz’s book was described as being capable of infecting humans only. There are strong speculations from researchers that COVID-19 was likely contracted from animals like bats and others before being spread among humans.
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Another stark difference is in the mortality rate. The Wuhan 400 virus in ‘The Eye of Darkness’ has a 100% mortality rate which means that everyone infected with it dies; no recoveries, no cures, no remedies. Getting the Wuhan 400 was an automatic death sentence. COVID-19, despite how infectious it is, has a far lower mortality rate.
Currently, scientists estimate the mortality rate to be around 3-4%, and there are speculations that it may even be lower in reality. The recovery rate is also quite high with more than hundreds of thousands of people already recovered from the virus.
Finally, Wuhan 400 could not exist outside the human body. COVID-19, on the other hand, can survive for some time on surfaces and be contracted when people come in contact with infected surfaces.
So is Dean Koontz really a prophet? Well, maybe not. Perhaps it was all just a coincidence.
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