Jul 172014

Cover for Deadout by Jon McGoran. Dark red color background with title in intense red letters; honeycomb imprints "DEAD" and there is an x-ray of a bee as the middle of the O in OUT.Booklist: McGoran brings back Philadelphia detective Doyle Carrick and his girlfriend, Nola, in another intriguing ecothriller that takes the GMO food angle first explored in Drift to a whole new level.The bees on Martha’s Vineyard appear to be dying off at an accelerated rate, leaving the farmers to hand-pollinate their crops or use genetically modified bees. A large agribusiness has offered to test their lab-created bees on the island, but not everyone wants them there. A weekend trip to the Vineyard lands Nola a job on an organic farm, and her new boss, Teddy Renfrew, is especially vociferous about keeping the GMO bees off the island, to the point where he may be endangering a deal his father has cooked up. The senior Renfrew hires Carrick to keep an eye on Teddy, who definitely doesn’t want the interference. But when someone takes potshots at Carrick, he realizes there is something deadly going on. The characters are never fully realized here, and the story gets bogged down with the technicalities of the dwindling bee problem, but it should still hold the interest of ecothriller fans.