In the action-packed page-turning thriller Nuclear Farm, Dr. Andy Carlson, his wife Lindsey, and their two precocious kids Jack and Ava and one disabled child, Peewee, face a nightmarish potential scenario of terrorists who manage to get their hands on nuclear weapons.
The author of Nuclear Farm, Dr. Charles C. Anderson, has carefully researched each of the three novels he’s written in The Farm series, which begins with his excellent debut novel The Farm. Anderson has a third novel he’s written and which is currently available in the series, called Blue Farm, which I will review in the near future.
The main protagonist of The Farm series, Dr. Andy Carlson, is loosely based on the author’s own life. While the author never (to my knowledge) faced the exact same sorts of threats that face Dr. Andy Carlson, he has been involved in more than his fair share of what many would call heroic actions.
Dr. Andy Carlson is an ex-Navy SEAL and emergency physician and his wife Lindsey is an ex-CIA operative and nuclear physicist, and they live on a 4,000 acre antebellum plantation located in Farmville, Virginia, called The Farm. It is an original Crown Grant plantation that has been in the Carlson family ever since 1741, and there are networks of interlinked natural caves and tunnels underneath the property.
The author of The Nuclear Farm, Dr. Charles C. Anderson, is himself a retired naval officer and an emergency physician, critical care physician, and a weapons specialist. He’s an expert in several fields of knowledge, like about Colonial Virginia, the Civil War, limestone caves, and the military instillations in Hampton Roads, Virginia. Anderson wrote about all of these elements in The Farm and the other books in the series.
Also, the plantation he writes about is a very real one, which has been his family’s house since 1743. It is recognized as being of great historical significance, and there are actually limestone caves and tunnels beneath the property.
While the plots of the novels in The Farm series are works of fiction, they are torn from today’s headlines. There has been much discussion and I’m sure there are many plans in place for actions which the United States would take if they ever were threatened by other countries or terrorists with the prospect of having one or more of our cities nuked. Nuclear Farm brings these possibilities very much into the realms of reality.
In Nuclear Farm, we see Dr. Anderson and his wife — who has very special skill sets herself — raising and training their extremely gifted children on their vast plantation. They teach their ten-year-old twins and their younger child, Peewee, to be warriors, not casualties. They learn languages and other subjects that they would learn at public schools, but their father also teaches them how to stalk and kill animals like deer on their property.
The plot of Nuclear Farm involves both the President of the United States and the Prime Minister of Britain receiving an ominous warning. They are told that if they try to give assistance to Israel during an upcoming Jihad, martyrs hidden in both the United States and England will destroy entire cities with nuclear warheads.
As a sign of proof that the Islamic fundamentalists are serious about their threat and can act upon it, they explode a nuclear warhead over Ras Tanura, which is a key Saudi oil export terminal near the Strait of Hormuz.
At least one critic, while liking Nuclear Farm, has referred to the “absurdity” of some aspects of the plots and the extreme personalities of some of the characters, like Dr. Anderson, Lindsey, and their children.
I would have to answer that by saying that sometimes what might seem far-fetched or absurd on the surface can an has actually happened, that the truth is often strange than fiction and sometimes is less believable than fiction as a result, and that the author has done extensive research in the writing of The Farm series. And, of course, the novels, no matter how realistic they are and how much they will make you want to stay up late into the night reading them, are works of fiction, after all.
Still, Dr. Andy Carlson has his reasons for wanting his children to grow up being more than capable of defending themselves. When he served in the war-torn Middle East, he saw thousands of dead children in the streets there. He doesn’t want the same sort of fate to happen to his children, his family.
Carlson and his unit of trained professionals perform missions to travel around the United States to find where nuclear warheads which were smuggled into America years ago have been planted by the terrorists and then eliminate them.
I don’t want to give away any further spoilers — read Nuclear Farm, and experience Dr. Anderson’s stellar writing for yourselves. It can be read and enjoyed as a stand-alone novel, though I would also highly recommend that you read the first book in The Farm series, called The Farm, before you read Nuclear Farm. If you love reading action-packed thrillers based on history and actual potential threats to our country, you need to add Nuclear Farm to your personal libraries today!
Written by: Douglas Cobb