In Paris, a physicist dies after performing a laboratory experiment for a beautiful visitor.
In the jungles of Malaysia, a mysterious buyer purchases deadly cavitation technology, built to his specifications.
In Vancouver, a small research submarine is leased for use in the waters off New Guinea.
And in Tokyo, an intelligence agent tries to understand what it all means.
Thus begins Michael Crichton's exciting and provocative technothriller, State of Fear. Only Michael Crichton's unique ability to blend science fact and pulse-pounding fiction could bring such disparate elements to a heart-stopping conclusion.
This is Michael Crichton's most wide-ranging thriller. State of Fear takes the reader from the glaciers of Iceland to the volcanoes of Antarctica, from the Arizona desert to the deadly jungles of the Solomon Islands, from the streets of Paris to the beaches of Los Angeles. The novel races forward, taking the reader on a rollercoaster thrill ride, all the while keeping the brain in high gear. Gripping and thought-provoking, State of Fear is Michael Crichton at his very best.
Topics: Speculative Fiction, Suspenseful, Adventurous, Climate Change, The Environment, and Politics
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I wasn't disappointed.
The action is steady, and builds. But not in a once style tension, like a runner circling the track and slowly adding speed as the laps progress.
Rather, this was more like a crosscountry run over terrain not fully anticipated. And though the initial pace is wisely modulated down, the tension and apprehension of what is happening begin from the first chapters.
Slowly characters are added, and not necessarily in order of importance, at least in terms of status of the character.
Also, unlike some thrillers, more esp those I've seen on film, rather than read via a book, action and suspense aren't the end alls of the story. Depth is added via explanations disguised as discussions between characters. There might be a few of those dialogs that started to drag a bit, but rather that, than an unrelenting drive that simply wears the reader out in an effort to convey the "thrill."
There is considerable depth of discussion and, for me, it didn't begin to detract. It surprised me, that such a well regarded best seller would have such in-depth dialog about things to do about science, the environment, power. And one can skim or skip over those portions and not lose much in terms of the physical action of the plot. But if skipped or scanned, the reader might lose the full impact of how good this book really is as a whole.
I'm glad Micheal took the time to elaborate the themes and ideas and state of the research regarding the book's topics, the environment and the wielding of power.
The two are weaved together in a totally convincing manner to me.
There is a sadness, understanding more of our earth's history, the history of ideas among people, and grasping the magnitude of the forces of nature beyond our control.
But there's a satisfaction in understanding, even if just somewhat.
And like all good fiction, there's a release in how the story unfolds, exposing us to the characters' fears and desires. To our own predicament of being people on a small planet in a large universe. And how much detail of concern there is just within our own planet, happening with and without us.
Totally recommend this absorbing book.more
I like Crichton usually, but this is a very bad book.more