May 02, 12
Read from April 27 to May 01, 2012
Michael Crichton has consistently been one of my favorite authors and I have looked forward to each book. A Case of Need happens to be the first Crichton book I ever read; then I saw the movie Jurassic Park and read the accompanying novel. Afterword, I waited for each Crichton book to appear and it seemed to fit well with my nerd persona.
Essentially that's what Crichton is. His detailed writing and use of specific research and concepts appeals to readers interested in right-brain thinking. A Case of Need is a prime example. Being one of Crichton's first books the writing of medical minutiae does tend to overwhelm at times and would be difficult for someone used to the fast-paced novelization of his later novels. The expanded appendices on medical conflicts and techniques is a worthy addition (presenting at one point the arguments for and against abortion in scientific analysis).
As a story there are gaps. Character development is sorely lacking and at times you find yourself so enthralled with the medical-technical that you forget this is a murder mystery. Unfortunately Crichton uses the last few chapters to bring things to a shocking conclusion that has you wondering where all of the medical prose went.
Highly recommended and worthy of four stars, but just barely.