Tinker's Plague by Stephen B. Pearl

A post-apocalyptic, science fiction, environmental, medical and political thriller.

A roller coaster ride from start to finish, this book will hold you with its fast pace and tense tone leaving you with memories that will both haunt and inspire you long after you put the book down, Jason Tertro, the Germ Guy.

Rated PG16, adult - adult content.

Second edition, 2016, published by Brain Lag in trade paper back and e-book.

First edition published by Draumr Publishing in trade paper back and e-book.

ISBN-10: 1928011101, ISBN-13: 978-1928011101 paperback;
ISBN-13: 978-1928011118 Kindle ebook, ISBN-13: 978-1928011125 epub ebook.

40 chapters, 304 pages, ~98,000 words.

Location: future Canada - Guelph and surrounding area, Ontario.

Available from: Amazon on line booksellers - including Canada, USA, UK, Australia,
Smashwords, Barnes and Noble and Nook, Indigo, Chapters and Coles bookstores in Canada,
and other book store locations.

Tinker's Plague  book cover - post apocalyptic novel, science fiction novel

Tinker's Plague Chapter 1

Tinker's Dam radio play


  •      In Tinker's Plague, Stephen B. Pearl takes us into a post-apocalyptic world where medicine is performed by engineers, public health is a matter for the military and the denizens of a small community begin to die as a result of a mystery plague. The story follows the efforts of one engineer, a Tinker, as he struggles to find not only the cause of the infection, but also how to cure it. His only help is an 18 year old girl who is willing to do anything to support him. As the Tinker races to find an answer, he is hampered by a discordant response that is rife with political interference, socioeconomic divide and undertones of racism and distrust of the government. A roller coaster ride from start to finish, this book will hold you with its fast pace and tense tone leaving you with memories that will both haunt and inspire you long after you put the book down.

         Jason Tertro, the Germ Guy and the Super Awesome Science Show.

  • Realistic, local, can't put the book down.

         I'm only 1/4 of the way through this book but I have not been able to put it down. The local settings help make it interesting. I got lost driving to Guelph and ended up going through Arkell and I spent a lot of summers in the Eden Mills area this is one of very few books that take place on a landscape I know. The "modern" makeshift solutions made by the story's present day population are believable. I met the Author at Hamilton's Art Crawl and now I hope to meet him again to discuss his books in person. Thanks for these stories, Stephen, they are very enjoyable.

         Phil Meitz.

  •      In the supermarker, one of the counter staff beckoned me over. She told me, "I hate you and your book (Tinker's Plague). I was up until 3 am two nights in a row reading it."


  •      Strong characters in an involving plot in a well researched and highly credible future world - could you ask for more in a science fiction novel? I didn't think so. If you haven't already gotten a copy, what are you waiting for?

         Ira Nayman - author of Welcome to the Multiverse. Sorry for the inconvenience, Goodreads rating 4 out of 5 stars

  •      Synopsis: This book mix of old technologies with new. They end up battling a plague as the title states, but the social make up of non educated and a few that are is extreme. All things being unequal in life some things never change, even a couple hundred years in the future.

         Review: This book is not meant for under age readers it has adult situations. The story line is told in a way which makes it easy to read and follow but doesn't explain who is talking, sometimes a little hard. The author is entertaining and keeps you through the entire book.

         Julies Book Reviews: by Cookie Nathan 4 stars out of 5.

  •      Stephen can truly spin a tale. "Tinker's Plague" novel really is the most original post apocalyptic stories I've read in... well... forever.

         Chris A. Jackson - author of Scimitar Moon.

  •      Stephen, I am reading the book to and from work on the TTC, without a doubt I am thoroughly enjoying each turn of the page, normally I am a voracious reader, but for this gem, I am carefully allocating a few pages each trip to extend the pleasure.

         Debra Yeung - Toronto conventions volunteer and organizer, e.g. SFContario.

  •      My mother gave me a signed book of the Tinker's Plague, for Christmas and I must say I enjoyed every second of it. Great work! :)

         Krystle Ann.

  •      Wow what a gripping story, loved every page. Andromeda Strain crossed with the Postman with a little bit of I am Legend thrown in ( no zombies ) .... This book is worth getting if you love PA sci fi.

         5 stars (5 star max.)

         Faye - Goodreads.

  •      You say you want an interesting post-apocalyptic novel, but The Road is too...Cormac McCarthyesque for you? Why don't you check out Stephen B. Pearl's Tinker's Plague? I read with Stephen at the Ad Astra science fiction convention, and when I was listening to him, goosebumps.

         Ira Nayman - proprietor of The Alternate Reality News Service.

  •      I first came across this book when I attended the Eden Mills Writer's Festival in September 2010. I didn't meet Stephen Pearl, but I did spend about ten minutes talking with his wife. She gave me Stephen's card with his web address and I promised I would check it out.

         I then visited his website and found that he had posted the opening chapter of his book Tinker's Plague. I read it and thought that it was pretty good and that I'd have to get a copy. I didn't act on it right away, but my thoughts kept returning to this book. A few more months went by and this book was still on my mind. Enough, I ordered it through my local store and waited again.

         I have to admit that it was well worth the effort, though I do wish I had acted sooner and bought it right away, had bought it at the event.

         This is a post apocalyptic novel set right in the area of Eden Mills and Guelph, Ontario. Brad is a tinker and he travels around from town to town with his horse drawn trailer full of technological wonders. Life is different in this after time, The tinkers are a well educated group, Brad has a Doctor of General /Applied Technologies, that are trained by the Novo Gaians. Today we would view the Novo Gaians as the environmental and the compassionate members of society. In the after time, the tinkers are the ones who travel the dark lands selling and trading goods as well as providing various levels of medical care.

         Brad is doing just that when he is alerted that a new type of illness is felling people in the city of Guelph. Is it really a new illness or is it a long forgotten ailment from the before period of time come to wreck havoc on an unsuspecting population.

         Mr. Pearl has created a new world. He didn't make it all perfect and pretty; he included the nasty parts as well. The thieves, scoundrels and politicians. What he also included are people such as Brad who have the will to make things better for everyone, not just for themselves. The people who live in the dark lands aren't bad, many of them have limited education and are living hand to mouth. They just want to survive and provide for their families. Pretty realistic. The Griders seem very self centred and only care about themselves. If it's not in their best interest, they don't want to get involved and in fact will try and make matters worse. The Novo Gaians are the altruists. They truly want to make the world better.

         I found this a fully believable set of characters and populations. I had no problem with horses pulling trailers full of technology. I live in a Mennonite area and view similar events every day.

         I am hoping that there will be a follow-up book to Tinker's Plague so I can read more of Brad's travels and adventures.

         Heather Pearson' review Goodreads 4 out of 5 stars.

  • Good plot about a dystopian future we might all face one day

         Tinker's Plague takes place in Southern Ontario (or what once was Ontario anyway) in the future a few hundred years from now. Tinker and his trusty assistant Carla travel the Dark Lands despite being highly mistrusted by an ignorant and backward population that fears science, knowledge and tinkers. When a terrible plague is accidentally released from a long-dead experimental facility, and politicians play games with peoples' lives because they can't be bothered to help, Tinker is basically on his own, trying to save lives while others panic and react with violence.

         The plot is well-done and the author clearly pays attention to modern-day politics and environmental issues. The bleak future painted therein is based on a world (ours, obviously) that didn't heed warnings about pollution and sustainability - what was once Toronto, for example, is now the "C-zone", so badly contaminated that nothing can live there, so of course that's where they keep the criminals. The Novo Gaians have figured out a sustainable way of living which, of course, makes the rest of their tribal neighbours fearful (although one suspects, perhaps also jealous.)

         There's an interesting and horrifying explanation for the mysterious plague that begins decimating some, but not others, and some provocative glimpses at technology that still works, and technology that doesn't. My only nitpick is there's a bit too much dialogue and not enough narrative - I know narrative has fallen out of favour with novelists and editors in recent years but I think a little more would have helped here. I would have liked a bit more background on how the world got to such a terrible place and how people managed to socially devolve so quickly. Otherwise, it was a fine read and something I think sci-fi readers will like especially if they like a medical slant.

         4 stars.

         Nicole Chardenet - author of The Republican Princess.