Forge, Jul 2003, 24.95, 367 pp.
Perhaps the only female superstar in the molecular genetics world, CEO Lara Blackwood runs GenIntron, a bioengineering lab, a firm developing cures or treatments for diseases using synthetic genes made from DNA. Lara feels good about her work and even serves as an advisor to the president. However, her perfect world crumbles when GenIntron's new parent company board fires her and Tokyo is devastated by a deadly disease that uses a person's DNA to kill he or she.
SLATEWIPER contains a synthetic gene similar to Lara's work that destroys people from within by converting them into slime. The Korean population residing in Tokyo is being eradicated as a genocide conspiracy of biblical proportion is happening. Lara is the only hope to stop Tokutaru Kurata from ethnic cleansing that will leave Japan for the Japanese. The quest becomes even more personal when Laura finds out that a hitwoman is killing off Lara's scientific associates.
Exciting, plausible perhaps even today, SLATEWIPER is a superb thriller starring a strong woman who, except for the macho male muffins, readers will appreciate. The story line is action packed yet the author makes sure the scientific basis for the theme is presented, easily understood in spite of the complexity of the topic, yet interwoven into the plot so nothing slows it down. Fans of scientific based thrillers will quickly realize that this book is worth setting aside several because once you start, you are hooked at a microbiological brain level to finish it in one sitting.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner