Broken Chain by Lisa Von Biela is a worrying look at genetically modified food introduced into the food chain in the shape of soya products for animal feed and human consumption.
Something is wrong, outbreaks of violence are becoming commonplace, livestock are dying prematurely, food is rotting before its sell-by date, send in the CDC to investigate. Kyle Sommers is a CDC doctor working flat out to solve the crisis, he travels to Minnesota with his wife and young daughter.
The truth is devastating for the USA, a ticking time bomb that doesn’t simply end with the first explosion. The story touches on various people as the major food sources are affected, the Homeland security services and the farmers. The GMO Company responsible who see this as an ideal opportunity to make more money and Daphne, who opens a vegetarian cafe amidst the steak loving people hot in the Minnesota summer Sun.
Broken Chain is a well written medical thriller bordering on post-apocalyptic horror and will appeal too many but I wasn’t dragged into the premise wholeheartedly. I felt there was some liberties taken with the whole food and violence link, not difficult to understand but it’s easy to overload on medical terminology. The characters didn’t really grab me, so I wasn’t really invested in the story and to be honest Broken Chain wasn’t my usual kind of read. The lettuce munchers don’t fare to well, which is not such a bad thing (joking) and on the other side of the fence, the meat eaters don’t come out much better. The race is on for fruit, veg and fish, grab your depth charges we’re going on a raid, yeehaw!
So Broken Chain is a stark look at a future where man’s infatuation, even need for easily and cheaply produced genetically modified food products takes a devastating toll on life.
Words by Paul Nelson, @pgnelson72