One of the finest first drafts of a novel I've read. Needs a good editor, though. Hope they can find one before it's published.
That said, the Cr...moreOne of the finest first drafts of a novel I've read. Needs a good editor, though. Hope they can find one before it's published.
That said, the Cretaceous ecology is marvelously fleshed out. Lots of research obviously went into setting and sequence and other details. The Maastrichtian age feels much closer.
The characters are believable, although many are stock. To my own surprise, I was taken in by the 1 or 2 really satisfying twists. There were other twists but... let's not dwell on them. Many small unresolved questions by the end. The Alphadon bones? The body in Roscoe? The fate of the *other* reverter, whomever he was?
I do wish more attention had been put into logical consistency, of closing these loopholes. And spelling. Man, I had no idea 2 PhDs could release a novel with this many typos. Small things like this flag my suspension of disbelief. They're really small, but they're on every page and they add up to a huge distraction. Overcome them and enjoyment is possible.
If you like realistic dinosaur action you ought to read this, no question. The dinosaurs redeem this whole book. Just understand that, as far as quality goes, this is a first draft of what may one day be an excellent book.(less)
Plot holes, flat characters, cliched twists, poor research, logical flaws, and a horrifyingly unsatisfactory ending that uses Bruce Springsteen to ter...morePlot holes, flat characters, cliched twists, poor research, logical flaws, and a horrifyingly unsatisfactory ending that uses Bruce Springsteen to terrorize primitive man. What's not to like?
This is the kind of book that lovers of prehistoric fiction, or lovers of techno-thriller (read: Crichton and imitators) should love. Being both, I must report painfully otherwise. Why? Just plain sloppiness. Understand that I don't have a problem with dumb: give me a simple plot and a juicy payoff and I can be happy. However, if the author insists on poking me in the eye by writing inconsistent descriptions, destroying objects then bringing them back pages later unexplained, switching between different points of view unannounced, forgetting his own character's motivations, developing threads only to discard them needlessly, and refusing to use an editor for more than spellcheck, well, I WILL THROW YOUR BOOK IN THE GARBAGE.
I am beset by a few lingering questions: how do you watch an avalanche from the mouth of a cave under it? Are non-extinct cave bears just a bonus any time you discover stone age people? Why is there so much firewood above the treeline? Do you know the difference between paleontologist and archeologist? Did you read the books and articles in your bibliography? Have you ever been camping? Have you ever met a scientist, a Russian, or a military officer? Have you ever met a woman who likes the phrase "pubic mound?" Do you hate your readers? Do you hate Bruce Springsteen? Have I proved my point yet?(less)
Academic. Boring. Full of characters, yet having no character. My main fault with this book is that it was written by the author. Really really overwr...moreAcademic. Boring. Full of characters, yet having no character. My main fault with this book is that it was written by the author. Really really overwritten. That, and it appears to now be the most available general interest book on gypsies out there, which is regrettable.(less)
An enjoyable book and a quick read, but a few things bug me.
Firstly, I expected a return of The Watcher from Fossil Hunter. A sentience that spans the...moreAn enjoyable book and a quick read, but a few things bug me.
Firstly, I expected a return of The Watcher from Fossil Hunter. A sentience that spans the Universe and is, in fact, older than it? Awesome. Sounds like it should probably be a repeating character, though.
Secondly, there seems to be a logical flaw with the Jijaki extinction. So the last space ark to the Quintaglio moon happens to now have the last Jijaki on it — ok. It plummets from the sky. All established in Fossil Hunter. But as presented on viewscreens at the top of the space elevator in this book, the Quintaglio moon is actually number 27 out of 31. How'd those last four become seeded? Furthermore, how did a species whose mission was to preserve Earth life on planets other than Earth not have the foresight to preserve specimens of itself? I guess I was really just rooting for a return of my Jijaki friends.
I was afraid that the part of this book that would annoy me was the psychoanalysis. I'm not a fan of Freud, and consider him rather unscientific and backwards, and didn't expect placing him in a pantheon with Galileo and Darwin would pay out. Nevertheless I found the logic of it quite satisfactory, and hey, now I dislike Freud less.
I just… I wish the trilogy overall paid out more, and especially that there was more of a continuation of Fossil Hunter's cosmic perspective. Perhaps one day I'll be lucky enough to read an epilogue to the epilogue, and I'll be made satisfied.(less)
It's his posthumous. Having read so much of his work as an impressionable youth, I had to.
A quick read, and a good one I must say. I found it refreshi...moreIt's his posthumous. Having read so much of his work as an impressionable youth, I had to.
A quick read, and a good one I must say. I found it refreshing, since Crichton is so often a genre writer, to read something out of his normal milieu. That said this book felt very much his typical style, with no lack of killing or brutality, and its share of excitement and cliffhangers. His effort to hit all the pirate adventure checkpoints was obvious. Nevertheless I did get a sense of why this wasn't published during his lifetime — there's a certain incompleteness, and a lack of fine polish that probably results from an editor who could no longer correspond with the author. Such things can't be avoided, I suppose. Requiscat in pace, artifex celebrus.
Apparently Crichton had been working on this story since at least 1982 (before I was born). Also interesting to note is that he has used the name 'Matanceros' before, as the name of another island on the chain that included the fictional Isla Nublar and Isla Sorna.(less)