During World War II, at the selection ramp of Auschwitz, Dr. Joseph Mengele selects four-year-old Jakob Bauer and his sisters for his notorious experiments. Mengele takes keen interest in Jakob’s intelligence and Nordic features, resulting in a paternal-like relationship that shelters Jakob from many of the concentration camp’s cruelties, and he survives the Holocaust.
In 2019, Dr. Chris Malone investigates seventy-five mysterious deaths for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. All deaths occurred within a twelve-hour period in three remotely located communities spread across the country. Peculiarities from Malone’s investigation lead her to Tudos Pharmaceuticals, a drug manufacturer known for innovation and egalitarianism. The founder is Jakob Bauer, seventy years removed from his liberation from the death camp.
Jakob has recently been demoted after falling out of favor with the stockholders for his role in creating an anti-addiction drug available to millions, in turn destroying profits. Despite his reputation for social conscientiousness, evidence keeps pointing Malone to Jakob’s involvement with the mysterious deaths. What Malone eventually uncovers defies comprehension and leads her on the trail of a pathogen as old as mankind.