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Sea Change

3.28 of 5 stars 3.28  ·  rating details  ·  130 ratings  ·  17 reviews
BENEATH THE CALM SURFACE A DEADLY TERROR AWAITS.

In the cold waters of the Pacific Northwest, two fishermen are the first to feel the heat. Then a young girl, playing innocently by the seashore--before dying an agonizing death. Now the media have a story. Reporters, scientists, and government officials are descending on the coastline, searching for a killer in the water. Re
...more
Mass Market Paperback, 481 pages
Published August 8th 2000 by Island Books (first published 1999)
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(showing 1-30 of 250)
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Victoria
Thrillers with an oceanic twist invariably end up being amongst my favorite. It’s an admittedly small sub-genre and one that I greatly enjoy. Powlik’s addition to the sub-genre is a thrilling one. The plot holds plenty of excitement and the characters come to life above the stock-character genre level. There’s a definite effort here to give it a solidly scientific tone with a strong attention to detail - which unfortunately can slow the overall pacing down at times. There is one major, gaping ho ...more
Audrey
This is a pretty good thriller involving some deadly plankton blossoms in the sea that may or may not have been created by man and the deadly tide of these microscopic killers are getting closer and closer to Seattle!

The plot was pretty good, there is a lot of science in this book and I found most of it very interesting but it also tended to bog the story down at times.

I didn't like the two main female leads very much at all, Carol seemed to be in a rage most of the time I began to doubt if the
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Scott Parsons
This 1999 yarn by James Powlik came to my attention in a used book store. It is a riveting yarn pitting marine biologist/oceaonograper Brock Garner against a deadly colony of rare phytoplankton previously unknown to science.The setting is the Pacific Northwest, BC and Washington State.Brock is doing his Ph.D. thesis at the Bamfield Marine Station on Vancouver Island. When the novel opens Brock is at sea in the middle of the Pacific on a research vessel monitoring plankton and oceanographic param ...more
Cris
I didn’t really dislike this book, but I didn’t much enjoy it either. The story is definitely the draw for this book. The characters are flat and very uninteresting which robs the story of some of its power. Several characters meet gruesome deaths, but because they were unappealing, flat and boring, I didn’t care. A reviewer called this book “an expert riff on the classic monster-horror novel,” and I’d have to agree. And while the story is pretty interesting, it would have been much more powerf ...more
Tom
I still can't decide:
Was this one "Sea Change" inspired by "Der Schwarm" from Schätzing - or, more likely, was the "Schwarm" inspired by this one.
They're just TOO similar.
It's not as bombastic. You could say: It's the Swarm without tsunamis and a bit more well-grounded biology.
The characters are as cheesy as Schätzings but thankfuly it's a good deal shorter and therefore cut out most of that greasy pathos, that Schätzing has quite overdone.
Additionally, Powlik is an actual biologist (maritime bi
...more
Tom
I still can't decide:
Was this one "Sea Change" inspired by "Der Schwarm" from Schätzing - or, more likely, was the "Schwarm" inspired by this one.
They're just TOO similar.
It's not as bombastic. You could say: It's the Swarm without tsunamis and a bit more well-grounded biology.
The characters are as cheesy as Schätzings but thankfuly it's a good deal shorter and therefore cut out most of that greasy pathos, that Schätzing has quite overdone.
Additionally, Powlik is an actual biologist (maritime bi
...more
Peggy
This novel is set in the Pacific Northwest, where people and marine mammals are dying after being exposed to something in the water that destroys them. The main characters are a marine microbiologist and his ex-wife, a whale sonar expert, and a doctor who treated some of the victims. The race to identify and neutralize the killer before it decimates the population in the Seattle area is complicated by an oncoming storm and the interference by other interested parties...don't want to give it away ...more
Margaret
Feb 20, 2009 Margaret rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Ex-navy seals with a phD in Marine Biology
This book is hard reading...I have a very strong science background and even that didn't help with much of the terminology. This is the first work of fiction I've ever read that required a glossary. I think so much more could have been done with this topic. The author spends more time describing the ships and the gear than he does developing his plot. Not really a fan of this one and won't be reading any more from James Powlik anytime soon.
Terry
I read this book quite a long time ago, but it has stuck in my mind and obviously passed the test of time. I loved that it is set in the Pacific Northwest, and I found the story to be very engrossing, even though I'm not a "sciencey" person, I was able to catch the gist of what was going on. I think I'll give this book a re read this summer.
Liesl
Thought this one started slow, but had a good ending. Didn't like that there was a map, but many places flagged in the story weren't on the map. Plus didn't like that everything kept getting flagged in latitude and longitude and again, wasn't on the map. Silly complaint I'm sure, but found it mildly distracting.
Jim Carvin
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Teipu
I couldn't finish this book. The story itself is quite interesting but Powlik stuffed this book so full of technical details and biologic explanations that it confused me more than it helped me.
Amy
The prolog and the epilog were the best. The stuff in between was good, technical at times but good. I really enjoyed this book as I thought it was all figured out until the epilog!!
Chris
I really like it. Thought it was imaginative, creative and the possibilities scary. I could be biased because it's locally based, but science/tech books take me on adventures.
Data
The bad guys are so bad, the good guys are so good ... but the science is sound.
Allison
Suspenseful tale of bioterrorism/red tide in the Puget Sound area.
Cherry Brown
Great pace...very scie tific...learned a lot!
Vivian
Vivian marked it as to-read
Aug 24, 2015
Raelee Gerrior-bays
Raelee Gerrior-bays marked it as to-read
Jul 29, 2015
Kevin
Kevin marked it as to-read
Jun 13, 2015
Jackie
Jackie marked it as to-read
May 28, 2015
Brian Bova
Brian Bova marked it as to-read
Apr 27, 2015
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