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The Reaper’s Rainbow

June 21st, 2009 ~ No Comments

Book Review by Bruce Thompson
Harley Farmer – Cause publications Ltd – ISBN 978-0-9526144-0-9

The Reaper’s Rainbow by Dr Harley Farmer is a brilliant detective yarn with an intriguing and compelling plot.

A mysterious illness begins killing strategic individuals in the financial sector and the police believe that Al Qaeda are unleashing a new weapon to cripple our economy. Detective Karen Fraser teams up with Doctor Michael Blandford a former Infection Control Doctor at the hospital where patients start dying.

Together they establish a specialist team of unlikely bedfellows to hunt down the culprit. Gordon Campbell runs a computer security company whose high tech facilities becomes a focal point for their intelligence gathering and international communications.

At first sight you might be tempted to think that it is another story with a superbug as the threat, and faceless terrorists as the enemy. However, after the dramatic opening sequence, I realized that the science is bang up to date, and completely plausible. What is more, the real enemy is lurking in the corridors and boardrooms of hospital trusts everywhere.

I can relate to the bureaucracy that the author describes so vividly. I have heard those same legal arguments, which corporate lawyers utter in all sincerity, but which tell you that they have truly lost the plot. When faced with the intransigence of “the system” which would rather follow procedure than risk success, I have experienced the deep feeling of frustration to which the characters are exposed.

Surely it couldn’t possibly happen? As people started dying, I started to get that funny feeling which I haven’t felt since reading Jaws by Peter Benchley.

This is an exciting book, which kept me up late at night to find out what happened next. It is all the more gripping because it is so believable, and really could happen. I will not spoil the suspense by telling you the ending, but after you have read this book you might think twice about your next visit to a hospital for anything more than parking your car.

The bugs are real, and people are literally dying in their thousands every year from exposure to them. The products and solutions cited really do exist and were developed to break infection cycles. You really must read this book. Then I suggest you send a copy to your local MP and recommend that they read it too!

Harley Farmer is a PhD Virologist who lectures at international conferences.
Amazon UK have a listing for The Reaper’s Rainbow click here to visit Amazon

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