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What others are saying about Lords of the Harvest

Washington Post:

"'Lords of the Harvest' tells a little-understood story in a compelling and credible way." (see entire review.)

Scientific American:

"fascinating and thoroughly reported" (see entire review.)


"I have friends who say 'MonSatan,' and it always startles me.  Surely, I think, there's more to this story.  And so there is - in Daniel Charles' wise and generous new book."  (Read entire review.)

Washington Times:

"In his eminently readable account, Mr. Charles weaves the threads of science, agriculture, business and social activism into a coherent, if not simple, historical tapestry." (see entire review.)

New Scientist:

[Dan Charles] explains the protoplasts and plasmids involved in manipulating genes, but his main interest lies with the people, and it is his rich cast of characters that moves Lords along.  (see entire review.)

Farm Journal:

"There's probably enough newly exposed information in this book to make a few of the corporate cast uncomfortable."  (Review not online.  Published in the February, 2002 issue of Farm Journal.)

St. Louis Post-Dispatch:

"I don't think I have read a more balanced, even-handed discussion of virtually every issue that bedevils agricultural biotechnology." (See entire review.)

Chemical & Engineering News:

"... the book has the guilty fun of a potboiler, taking a tour of the best and worst of human behavior and emotion ..."  (See entire review.)

American Scientist:

"Daniel Charles does an exceptionally good job of explaining in lay terms the technicalities of genetic manipulation of organisms.  In tracing the labyrinthine corporate history ... he also has written a book that is revelatory for scientists. .... His account of the battle between industrial empires ... is as gripping as a Tom Clancy novel.  (Not online.  Published in the March-April 2002 issue of American Scientist.)

Red Herring:  

"'Lords of the Harvest is the first account that essentially gets right the story of how we got here, while confronting the irony of the 'frankenfoods' controversy"  (See full review.)

Technology and Culture:

"[T]his fascinating book [is] a must-read for anyone interested in the history of agriculture or biotechnology." (See full review.)

National Journal:

"A good and serious book for people interested in getting beyond the shouted slogans and the corporate flackery, and actually acquiring some understanding of the risks and rewards of bioengineered foods." (Not online.  Review published in National Journal on November 10, 2001.)

Foreign  Affairs:

"Charles .... enthralls his readers ...."  (Not online.  Published in Foreign Affairs in January-February, 2002).  

Nature Biotechnology:

"a refreshingly unbiased and thorough chronicle of the birth and formative years of the young agbiotech industry."

Library Journal:

"[A] carefully researched and balanced account. ... Charles is also an excellent storyteller." (Not online.  Review published in LJ on November 15, 2001.)

Harvard Business Review:

"[A] provocative history of biotech in agriculture" (Not online.  See October, 2001 issue of HBR.)

Technology Review:  

"insightful" (see entire article.)


"It's told with a science reporter's expertise and a storyteller's grace ... accessible and entertaining." (Not online.  See October 1, 2001 issue of Booklist.)

"the agrobiotech equivalent of fly-on-the-wall industry epics like World War 3.0, Liar's Poker, and Hit Men."  (See entire review.)

Ray Suarez, author, The Old Neighborhood and Senior Correspondent for The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer:

"Lords of the Harvest is an epic tale of scientific breakthrough and public suspicion. It's science writing that never dumbs it down, and at the same time smart storytelling that keeps you wondering about the origin of every morsel of food you'll put in your mouth today. The perfect handbook for a perplexing new world of food and farm."

Paul Raeburn, Senior Writer at Business Week and author of The Last Harvest: The Genetic Gamble That Threatens To Destroy American Agriculture:

"Lords of the Harvest is a fascinating history of a scientific revolution that already affects every one of us in the most direct way: through the food we eat. We've all read the headlines in the angry debate over biotech foods; Daniel Charles gives us the compelling story behind the headlines."

John Hyde, co-author of American Dreamer: The Life and Times of Henry A. Wallace:

"Daniel Charles has cast sorely-needed light on some of the most heated controversies of our time -- the genetic modification of plant life and the powerful grip large corporations now have on our food supply. Thoroughly researched and lucidly written, Lords of the Harvest is a clear and balanced account of a dramatic scientific breakthrough with huge social, political and environmental implications."

Thomas Urban, former Chairman and CEO, Pioneer Hi-Bred International:

"This book should be mandatory reading for those presently in the [agricultural biotech] business."