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{August 3, 2013}   {Review} The Eradication Dilemma by William Wilkerson

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From Goodreads: What if genetic science presented a way to end the worldwide cocaine trade with the snap of your fingers? Jake MacQuilkin, the top DEA agent in Latin America, resigns after a cocaine bust leaves his fiancé dead. Jake is called back to the DEA where it’s disclosed that renegades in his agency have hatched a plot to deploy this science and end cocaine trafficking forever. If he allows to plot continue to its end he could avenge the loss of his love. But politics overrides his instincts. Instead he is instructed by his superiors to do just the opposite. Stop those who would stop cocaine and the global criminal enterprises that profit from the trade. The Eradication Dilemma is the story of a man faced with the difficult choice of seeking revenge and finding redemption or following his orders and allowing the cocaine trade to flourish..

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This was a very interesting look at the cocaine trade, a topic that I honestly don’t think about very often.  What was perhaps the most interesting was the revelation that some economies in the world actually thrive and stabilize based on this trade, presenting Jake MacQuilkin with an extreme moral dilemma as he has the opportunity to take down cocaine forever, but also doom entire populations that thrive off cocaine farming.  While this novel certainly doesn’t condone cocain trade by any means, it does present its growth in a way that I’m sure many have never thought of before—aside from being an addictive deadly drug, it is also the livelihood of many, many people in a completely legal way.

When I began this novel, I was certainly all for the destruction of cocaine plants as I only had one side of the story: preconceived notions of what my personal economy and cultural stereotypes say about the plant.  But, this novel presents the philosophical question of killing one for many, or killing many so even more may thrive, and it is a very interesting moral dilemma that our main character, Jake, is faced with; I do not envy him at all.

This is a novel that makes you think, a mixture of science, mystery, and intrigue as it all unfolds, and I enjoyed this aspect of it very much.  I would have liked to connect a little bit more with the many characters within the novel, though.  Jake and Rhonda were extremely interesting and great together, but I never truly felt like I knew them—possibly because they’re so very different from anyone I know!

This story takes place over the course of 60 days, and I really enjoyed knowing the date, time, and place each time there was a transition, however, the execution of the story was also a little difficult to follow here and there because the reader is whisked away to so many places within the text.  Luckily for me, most of the time I has no issues keeping up with Wilkerson.  It also helped immensely that he bolded the text when a change in time and location took place, though I think these transitions might have been a little more fluid and easier to understand had they been chapter breaks and not just paragraph breaks.  However, that’d make for a ton of chapters, so I do understand why Wilkerson chose this format.  Overall, this is a well-written, thought provoking book.  Three stars.

3 stars

I received this novel from the author in exchange for an honest review.

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