I've reviewed the book Deadly Companions: how microbes shaped our history in the current issue of Chemistry & Industry, No 15, p 29.
Here's a snippet from the review:
"Dorothy Crawford, a professor of medical microbiology at the University of Edinburgh, has taken a sabbatical year to explore our history from this angle – an all too rare example of an established scientist taking time to popularise science. Her book is an excellent explanation of what went wrong for most of human history, what went very briefly right in the 20th century, and why microbes have now wrongfooted us again, at the beginning of the 21st. As microbes are everywhere around us, most of this “deadly companionship” can be explained in terms of human activities and lifestyle changes offering pathogens from other animals new opportunities to invade."
Full text should turn up online here, but it's often late.