Maybe you should also read this exposé of all the dramatic exaggerations in that book. It’s kind of like if everything you know about sharks came from the movie Jaws — you’re a walking talking source of ignorance.
The Hot Zone, for me, is unfortunately one of those books that you read as a young person and think is amazing, only to revisit years later and see it as much more shallow and contrived, the characters one-dimensional and the plot predictable. The problem is that The Hot Zone is not just a young adult novel–it’s still presented and defended as an absolutely true story, especially by huge Preston fans who seem to populate comment threads everywhere. And now it looks like there will be a sequel. At least it should be good for a drinking game.