The Andromeda Strain
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The Andromeda Strain

3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  123,304 ratings  ·  1,630 reviews
Some biologists speculate that if we ever make contact with extraterrestrials, those life forms are likely to be--like most life on earth--one-celled or smaller creatures, more comparable to bacteria than little green men. And even though such organisms would not likely be able to harm humans, the possibility exists that first contact might be our last.

That's the scientif

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Paperback, 288 pages
Published September 20th 1992 by Ballantine Books (first published May 12th 1969)
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Alejandro
This book is a good example that sometimes the rating that one gives to one book isn't fault itself of the book but due the timing of when you read it in relation with having read other books of the same author.

All that long introduction is to explain that my very reason to give only 3 stars to this very good book is because I happened to read it after of reading Sphere (see review of that book: HERE), that I find quite similar in the general premise.

Both books have the calling of a expert scien...more
Annette
liked the beginning, thought the end was unbelievably anticlimatic.
Russ
Aug 22, 2007 Russ rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Scientists
Shelves: 2007, thriller, novel
This book is all about the tension, not the payoff.

As with most entertainment, this book pulls you in by asking some questions. "What is it?" "How does it work?" "What happened?" While those questions are still being asked, this book is a fairly thrilling read.

If you don't like books that get too technical about things, though, this isn't the book for you. It's full of pages from government documents, computer readouts, and the like. That only helps the book go by quicker, because I just skippe...more
Richard
This was probably one of the first science fiction books I ever read, and so far the only book by Crichton. My rating is based on my reaction over three decades ago -- I seem to recall there were some parts that felt awkward, like they were written by someone trying to leap across the so-called "generation gap". But my teen self loved the book, so it gets the five stars. I have no idea whether I'd still feel as generous if I were to re-read it, but then I seldom re-read books anyway.

The movie wa...more
Tfitoby
The Andromeda Strain, Michael Crichton's contagion procedural, has more in common with Sjowall & Wahloo's Roseanna than anything created by anybody widely associated with the science fiction genre but the biological investigation by Stone, Leavitt et al is most assuredly science fiction and most importantly a fascinating account of how an extraterrestrial bacteria might react to human beings and how human beings might react in return.

It's a methodical, slow burn thriller that's heavy on the...more
shayla,
Such an expertly written book. You can tell Crichton has a background in medicine from some of the terminology he uses, the knowledge of biology is uncanny! Definitely makes the book unique in context to any others I have read. The cover and use of the galaxy name Andromeda in the book draws Sci-fi readers towards it definitely. I know this for a fact because I wouldn't of even gotten the book if it didn't have the cool cover of the earth and numbers matrix style and the space title.

The plot of...more
Tommy Carlson
I read The Andromeda Strain back in my youth and had fond memories of it. So, I recently grabbed an eBook version to revisit it. I'm not exactly sure from where the fond memories came. It's not that great a book. On the positive side, there are few female characters so Crichton's misogynistic streak is mostly absent, but that's about it.

Dialogue is sparse and flat. Characters aren't much better. Crichton seems more intent on showing off his research than about telling a compelling story. The who...more
Paulo "paper books always" Carvalho
I had to think for a couple of days to give this book a proper review/rating.

First of all, let me say something. I read some criticism that this book didn't developed any characters. Well my thoughts are the same BUT Michael Crichton in the beginning of the book says that this is a report and every single chapter/day was from a report of some sorts. There are several instances in each chapter that our narrator tells us important details, and say "how wrong they were..." or "If only they had don...more
Arun Divakar
The books that I have been getting my hands on recently all have the theme of disaster written in bold letters upon them. This was the first of them and the catastrophe was biological in terms of its agents and occurrence and as a reader it offered to me a most horrifying premise : wipe out by a biological weapon.

The villain here is a microbe of extra terrestrial origins and one that is ruthless in the devastation it brings about.A crack team of specialists sets to work on it and in the end the...more
Kaph
So I decided to give Crichton another go. I was optimistic. There is no movie of this one (as far as I’m aware) and I do enjoy a good space epidemiology premise. What can I say? I was right, solid 3. Also, look up ‘page-turner’ in a reputable dictionary and you will be directed to this book. Bloody impossible to put down, almost irritatingly so. I read the last chapters in a kind of frustrated mania, aware I had things to do but also accepting of the fact that they were not getting done until I...more
Andrew Mueller
The Andromeda Strain starts fast in a small Arizona town where a mysterious military satellite has crash landed. When a dispatch team is sent to retrieve the satellite, something terribly wrong happens. At the site of the satellite, the dispatch team also sees a horde of dead bodies surrounding the satellite. As the dispatch team contacted a nearby military base to tell the news they are suddenly overcome by a mysterious unknown force, leaving them dead, and the communicator silent. The militar...more
Jason
Andromeda Strain addresses a "worst case" scenario, where an unknown bacteria has the potential to wreak havoc on society, and a secret government agency has to deal with it before it gets completely loose.

The construction of the events and the execution feels very real - rather than an elite team of geniuses who use super spy powers to do whatever they want, you get a feel for the bureaucracy created by a government organization made to address an unknown threat, and the hodge-podge nature of a...more
Frank Roberts
This might be a wildly inaccurate review since this isn't exactly a freshly read book. Read it about 36 years ago when I was 8 - it was my first Big People book, having had my fill of Roald Dahl and Judy Blume I felt it was time to step up my literary undertakings. So I'll try to write something here reflecting how I felt reading it in third grade.

The Andromeda Strain is the greatest book ever!!! The movie was on TV a couple of times this year, but always at like 9 o'clock and mom won't let me s...more
jzhunagev
Nov 27, 2011 jzhunagev rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Michael Crichton and Techno-Thriller fans
Recommended to jzhunagev by: the "Voice"
The Strain That Started It All
(A Book Review of Michael Crichton’s The Andromeda Strain)


Where others credit classic writers like Jules Verne and H. G. Wells, I forever owe my first real taste of science fiction to Michael Crichton — long before I was even made aware that such a classification exists — and perhaps, as I think of it now, even more.

I still remember the day I borrowed Congo from the high school library during my junior year. What made me pick me the book is this vague idea that’s it...more
Becky
Jan 28, 2009 Becky rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Researchers, biologists, and science lovers
This was my first Crichton book, and I have to say, I wasn't terribly impressed. I know, I know, this is a Science Fiction Classic, but I just kept waiting for something to happen.

I suppose if I was a scientist, or a biologist, I wouldn't feel that way. Probably, if I was a researcher, I would have found this book riveting, fascinating and terrifying. As a human of roughly average intelligence, I found it none of those things, and I felt like I should have.

The premise is excellent: a satellite...more
Ryan
I was disappointed by The Andromeda Strain.

Having said that, I was impressed to see that even as far back as 1969, Crichton had prepared all of the ingredients that would make up his later work. The Andromeda Strain challenges our faith in science. It ridicules the objectivity of scientists. Carefully managed systems fail elaborately to create suspense. A crack team is challenged under harsh conditions.

Unfortunately, The Andromeda Strain reads like little more than a blueprint for Crichton's lat...more
Ed G
Jul 11, 2007 Ed G rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Crichton fans, Medical Fiction fans, Mystery fans
All I'm going to say about Crichton is that he has a knack for what I call the "miracle ending". In one summer I read Congo, Jurassic Park, The Andromeda Strain, Terminal Man, The Great Train Robbery and Sphere. I felt the same about each of them when I finished each.

He's a very good writer with captivating storylines, dead on science, compelling plot and in depth characters, but...I feel like he gets tired of writing the same story or can't properly tie things together at the end so he has som...more
Leif Hague
It's generally difficult for a science-fiction book to be believable, but The Andromeda Strain does a good job of making it feel like the events in the book could actually happen. This book spans five days and follows a group of scientists: Stone, Burton, Leavitt, and Hall, as they investigate a mysterious organism called the "Andromeda Strain" that was brought to earth in a government satellite. This dangerous bacteria killed all but two of the residents of a small town. As members of the Wildf...more
James
After hearing about the mini-series based on the book that came out on A&E last year, I figured I should probably read The Andromeda Strain. I’m a fan of some other books by Michael Crichton (ie: Jurassic Park and Next), not to mention ER, so this is worth a shot, right? Not really. The Andromeda Strain is basically all the uninteresting parts of The Stand. You remember that one chapter where they talk about how the disease spread and how devastating it was? Well now imagine that chapter, e...more
Rade
Crichton was a great writer. I did not read many of his books (plan on reading a lot more), but I like his writing style. He researches his topic well and his writing is top notch in my opinion. That being said, The Andromeda Strain was kind of a let down.

I did not really know what to expect from it. It started off with a great premise, a satellite falling on a small town and not too long after, the people in that town are all found dead of mysterious cause. So far so good. Then we are introduc...more
Emily
My mom told me this was one of the most thrilling books she had ever read. I think she is easily thrilled. I was bored out of my mind. Had there been some dionsaurs it would have been a whole lot better.
Branko
Branko Galonja
Ms. Campanella
English 3H Period 2
8 December 2009
The Andromeda Strain

The genre of this breath-taking and awe-inspiring book is classified as a Science Fiction novel, one with many technological and medicinal terms. I chose this book because I am a huge fan of Michael Crichton and I love Science-Fiction novels. I love the feeling of mystery and fear throughout the books and love to see what the characters do in the situations of peril and disaster. The setting takes place in t...more
Duffy Pratt
I saw this movie when it came out. I was about ten at the time, and it impressed me quite a bit. I don't think I've seen it since. Yet I can still vividly remember much of it, and found myself comparing scenes in the book to my recollection of the movie. Here's one of the rare examples where the movie is better than the book, or at least my fond memories of a ten year old's impression of the movie is better.

Crichton has great ideas, but his writing is pedestrian at best, his characters lack char...more
Joann Muszynski
Jun 19, 2009 Joann Muszynski rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who is more non-fiction/scientifically detail inclined.
Recommended to Joann by: no one.
Unfortunately, I was unable to finish this book, despite my best efforts to pull through it and finish it out. I was almost there. So... Close... But I was defeated by lack of plot and action.

It's a shame. I love Michael Crichton and he is listed as one of my favorite authors. I will say, however, that there is definitely a growth to his writing. With The Andromeda Strain one of his oldest books and having read NEXT, one of his newest, the blend of scientific fact with gripping story lines and h...more
Marcel Meyer
I can see how someone not interested in science, might put this book off as boring due to the large amount of technical details. That said, Crichton managed to write a thriller on scientific discovery, which is quite exciting in its own right. Also, most scientific concepts are clearly described and I, as a reader, felt thrilled to join the scientists on their quest to understanding the extraterrestrial organism. Indeed, given this quest it was necessary to provide technical details and this boo...more
Brent
Michael Crichton's The Andromeda Strain is a must read for any fans of sci-fi or thriller novels. The book tells the story of a the mysterious Andromeda Strain, a mysterious virus brought down to earth by NASA's Scoop program that has the power to kill an entire town within minutes. The story follows the Wildfire teams, a group of elite scientists working in an underground government facility, as they race to find a cure to this disease that could cause the death of every human being on the plan...more
Kat
I like Michael Crichton's work. I know not everyone does, so I'm going to keep this short, and as relevant as possible.

I had few options for a novel to teach to my summer school English course, and this book was among them. It had been on my list of books to read for awhile, so I grabbed it. The short version- I loved it, and the kids got really into it. These aren't the honors kids getting ahead, either. They're the ones who are "recovering credit." The fact that they like it, in spite of the s...more
Alex Watkins
Jul 29, 2009 Alex Watkins rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Blast from the past style people just coming out of their bunker from 1960
Shelves: science-fiction, 2009
This book is kinda lame. Nothing really happens, its like Jurassic Park if the dinosaurs never escaped, but instead evolved into birds. The cover of the book made all sorts of bold claims like the Thriller that shocked a generation! must be a very delicate generation. There is lots of interesting science in this book, but half the book is him setting up this elaborate computer (in the loosest sense of the word) operated base that is not believable at all. Probably because it was trying to be rea...more
Punk
SF. An upper-atmosphere probe brings back a microorganism that kills an entire town and a group of scientists are called to a secret underground laboratory to identify and, if possible, neutralize it.

The premise is interesting, but I wish Crichton had spent more time developing the characters and less time reproducing computer menus, mass spec results, teletype messages, and an amino acid analysis that yields two pages of nothing but zeros. It adds to the realism, if you know what you're looking...more
Anne
Andromeda Strain is probably a four or five star book, but it was just way too technical for me. I found myself skimming all of the technical stuff and skipping ahead to the part where the scientist would explain what he just said in "dummy speak". On the bright side, it is not a very long book, so it didn't feel like it was dragging. I thought the ending was great. I was very suprised, because it was not at all what I was expecting.
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Michael Crichton (1942–2008) was one of the most successful novelists of his generation, admired for his meticulous scientific research and fast-paced narrative. He graduated summa cum laude and earned his MD from Harvard Medical School in 1969. His first novel, Odds On (1966), was written under the pseudonym John Lange and was followed by seven more Lange novels. He also wrote as Michael Douglas...more
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