The Big Finish by James W. Hall is a gripping crime thriller in its own right. But the novel is also a graphic depiction of the damage done to the natural environment and to human health by reckless industrial waste pollution.
The novel is part of the continuing series to feature main character, Thorn, a rugged outdoorsman loner who often finds himself entangled in dangerous situations. The setting for this novel is rural North Carolina. Thorn's son is missing there after joining some militant environmental activists who are battling a large hog livestock farm operation. The hogs are being maltreated in truly horrendous conditions and the waste byproducts are poisoning the local land, river, and populace. The farm owners are a brutal lot who stage a fatal armed attack to stop the activist group.
Thorn leaves his native Florida and heads north to find out what happened to his son. In the process, he comes into violent conflict with some coldly vicious enemies.
The Big Finish was written to be the finale to the Thorn novel series. The Thorn books have always been outstanding for their descriptive depiction of the natural ecology of Florida, where Thorn lives. Thorn's deep disgust at the way the state's lands and habitats are being lost to relentless development is an ongoing theme in the novel series.
The Big Finish is a great read as a Crime thriller and as a sometimes stomach-turning picture of how livestock industry pollution can damage a local community and its residents.