Harvest of Greed
Reggie Ballantyne is a firebug for the times. He’s obsessively clever, full of strong convictions yet willing to sell his services for a song, he’s an urban warrior and he specializes in inventive attacks on wheat and sugar cane fields. Australia’s crazy weather is playing into his hands. It’s baking hot and hasn’t rained in prime farmlands for months. Young Reggie is caught by country cop Bruce Brown then freed on the instructions of police headquarters. They’re too busy to bother. What a mistake. Then when big-city screen jockey Alix Kingston’s telephone rings and he is also too busy to take the call, it takes him weeks of battling office politics to realize that he has turned his back on the biggest, life-saving story of his career. Kingston and Brown finally discover they have just the right mix of divergent self-needs to chase Reggie down. This leads Alix to the knock-out discovery that Chinese government officials are paying Reggie to fulfill his firebug dreams. China! The rising superstar of the world economy. What is it doing in grubby little firebug deals in Australia? Lawless Chinese business practices lead Alix on a treacherous chase through Hong Kong, Outback China and Taiwan. This reveals a world of ruthless Chinese capitalists, decked out in Ray-Ban sunglasses and Gucci suits, and ever-spreading concrete over land grabbed from peasants. Is China saving the world or eating it alive? Shimmering heatwaves from the Australian wheat arson attacks hang like a mirage over a new world where rampant lust for money meets the climate crisis and global food fears in battles across grains bowls and commodities markets. Alix faces the challenge of his life chasing answers in a crooked global game of greed which has the power to hit hard at virtually everyone in every corner of the world.
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