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Reviewed by Michelle Stanley for Readers' Favorite
“You are what you eat!” This quote is definitely proven in Bill Calhoun’s novel Emerald Crystal 5. When a friend asks Stone Maddox, former leader of a secret Navy Seal unit for help and suddenly dies, Stone suspects murder. Japanese conglomerate Global Health and Fitness uses a closely guarded ingredient called Emerald Crystal 5 in their nutritional supplements, animal feeds and many food items. Stone’s investigation unveils a deadly cover-up about product ingredients that the manufacturer doesn’t want consumers to know about. It is not an easy assignment as the conglomerate has crooked politicians, policemen, FDA agents and other useful persons on its payroll. Who is trustworthy enough to help him? Stone becomes the target of hired assassins, and regroups his former unit to destroy the powerful conglomerate.
Bill Calhoun made me ponder more seriously about the foods and supplements I purchase. How are the products made? What are they made from? Were these items actually tested by relevant government authorities? Emerald Crystal 5 is a terrific short story which contained good suspense and action. The author developed his characters well, and it was interesting and amusing to see what each one thought of the other. I liked the way Bill Calhoun matched the protagonist and antagonist, as both had military training using different techniques. The writing style of the author was unforced and unpretentious. He was able to express his thoughts on a health issue that many persons are concerned about in a most creative and believable format.