Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “State of Fear” as Want to Read:
State of Fear
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

State of Fear

3.70  ·  Rating details ·  83,983 ratings  ·  3,519 reviews
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. Th ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 672 pages
Published November 1st 2005 by Avon (first published December 7th 2004)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about State of Fear, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Infinity's Bookshelf He came to the conclusions he did because the world hadn't really seen the effects yet. I don't think he consciously attempted to misappropriate data …moreHe came to the conclusions he did because the world hadn't really seen the effects yet. I don't think he consciously attempted to misappropriate data to form this book. He was simply speaking from the playbook that the climate change deniers spoke from. Now, while Texas has the worst winter storm in decades, wildfires destroy land on three continents and islands are being swallowed by the ocean, we have to acknowledge that even if humans aren't causing this, we are going to have to survive it somehow. Back in 2003, they had no idea the scale of the problem. (less)
cool breeze As stupid as it sounds (and is), there are plenty of idiots arguing that global warming causes earthquakes and tsunamis:

Climate change will shake the …more
As stupid as it sounds (and is), there are plenty of idiots arguing that global warming causes earthquakes and tsunamis:

Climate change will shake the Earth (The Guardian)
More Fatal Earthquakes to Come, Geologists Warn (Newsweek)
Waking The Giant: How a Changing Climate Triggers Earthquakes, Tsunamis and Volcanoes (Yale)

Global warming - is there anything it can't do?
"Global warming turned me into a newt! (I got better)"(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.70  · 
Rating details
 ·  83,983 ratings  ·  3,519 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of State of Fear
Ahmad Sharabiani
State of Fear, Michael Crichton

State of Fear is a 2004 techno-thriller novel by Michael Crichton in which eco-terrorists plot mass murder to publicize the danger of global warming. State of Fear is, like many of Crichton's books, a fictional work that uses a mix of speculation and real world data, plus technological innovations as fundamental story line devices.

When a group of eco-terrorists engage in a global conspiracy to generate weather-related natural disasters, its up to environmental lawy
Mario the lone bookwolf
Chrichton is superficially playing with ethical and political ideas in one of his worst novels. Others weren´t really good too, but at least he avoided showing that he didn´t do his homework when dealing with an important topic.

I don´t know why Chrichton integrated climate change activists as a key element without doing his research and invited in this way much true criticism of that one shouldn´t so superficially deal with a very complex and controversial context to boost the sales of a book, e
Robert McDonald
Nov 14, 2007 rated it did not like it
I never expected to read this book. But my mom left a copy of Michael Crichton’s book State of Fear at my house, and I found myself reading it. The book is an odd mix of fiction and pseudo-scientific argument.
As a fiction piece, it’s actually okay. For reasons that are irrelevant to the plot, evil villains are trying to shear a big iceberg off into the ocean, create a flash flood in a canyon, and make a tidal wave hit LA. The good guys are of course trying to stop them, and manage to stop them
Jan 19, 2008 rated it did not like it
If you want to write an essay on your opinion of global warming, Mikey, do so. Don't disguise it as a novel when you've only got 10 pages of plot. ...more
Sep 17, 2007 rated it did not like it
State of Fear is centered around a plot by eco-terrorists to bring world attention to global warming by, you guessed it, blowing up half the world. Yes, the nonsensical plot that makes up the spine of this book leaves the rest of this skeletal narrative in the hands of a man we've rarely seen: Michael Crichton, political philosopher. First of all, the book, released in 2004, asks you to believe that there is a "state of fear" being pushed on the public in order to "scare" them into belief of Glo ...more
Oct 18, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: i-said
3.5 stars

I can’t believe that I am sitting here thinking about this review while Hurricane Sandy’s imminence is being trumpeted just outside my door.

Makes you think…..

The story itself is about global warming. It’s a cautionary tale really. On the one hand you have some radical environmentalists/ scientists who are not above manipulating the environment in order to support their fund raising goals. I mean people will dig deeper into their pockets if they have been personally impacted by global wa
Tentatively, Convenience
Apr 23, 2008 rated it did not like it
Shelves: sf
This is propaganda written by an ultra-rich person. Utterly despicable. I just thought Crichton was mediocre until I read this. Now I think he's insidious. There're 2 basic thrusts: Global Warming is a myth & ecology activists are phenomenally stupid. I don't actually have much of an opinion about global warming one way or the other so I don't hate this novel so much b/c it's a threat to mass consciousness there. I hate it b/c it's so repulsively propagandistic (w/o any self-acknowledgement as s ...more
Aug 15, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Exciting book! I've read it 3 times now. Definitely read the author's message at the end, it's really interesting. ...more
Mar 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Reread Dec 01, 2014

Thought-provoking, controversial, action-packed, suspenseful, well-researched, outrageous, perhaps a science-fiction, as well as fictional science book?

The plot:A lawyer represents a wealthy client who is donating large amount of money to various conservation causes and gets involved in the underworld of power, greed and social manipulation. The discovery of a set of GPS points leads to the action-packed adventures which becomes the main focus of the drama.

"State of
Jun 22, 2009 rated it did not like it
As a thriller, this books fails to achieve Cricthon's usual intensity. The plot is an obvious vehicle for the rhetoric, and full of predictable thriller-writer strategies. The premise--climate scientists with guns--never ceases to feel absurd. The characterizations are flatter than usual, and vicious where he means them to be merely satirical. There is cranky old man venom in the writing. In short, this book is a piece of propaganda and would never have been published were it not for Crichton's ...more
Patrick Mcginley
Jul 08, 2007 rated it did not like it
Shelves: stayaway
This is the worst book I have ever had the misfortune of wasting my time with. Not only are the politics deplorable (it's about a group of eco-terrorists who induce fake desasters to back up their false claims of global warming), it's also shoddily written. The characters are paper thin and idiotic, the hero is a dim-witted buffoon, and the plot consists of icreasingly boring action-scenes, interrupted by the preachings of an obnoxious Jack Bauer rip-off. The bad guys all drive Priuses and the g ...more
J.S. Nelson
Apr 19, 2020 rated it liked it
The best part of this novel was the scene on pages 499-506, which explains the title of the novel “State of Fear” & couldn’t be more true (& actually has nothing to do with global warming 😆).
Having worked for the media in the past, I can tell you that it is very true. They only wanted us to write stories that inspired feelings of hate, anger & fear in the reader. Why? Because the media is actually a business & that’s how money is made in that business. Advertisers pay for what sells, what most p
Mike (the Paladin)
If you've read many of my reviews you know it's not unusual for me to open a review with something like "This is an interesting book" or simply "Interesting".

That applies here also.

I looked through some of the other reviews of this book and I find that in many if not most cases the "number of stars in the rating" depends heavily on whether you agree with the stance of the main character (or one of the main characters, Kenner is the spokesman in most of the narratives but the protagonist is Evan
Mar 20, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Michael Crichton continues to impress with both his story telling and with his researching capabilities. State of Fear, on its surface, is a novel about the global warming debate. But the issues it touches upon go deeper than just whether or not global warming is a phenomenon we should be concerned about.

A particularly cogent theme of the book is the role of politics in shaping scientific research. In particular, Crichton delves into how global warming research is shaped by political agendas (bo
Oct 16, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: makes-you-think
Holy crap. First of all, a good, solid Crichton novel. Second, you will never think about global warming or science in general the same way again... I don't know how much of the information about global warming presented in the book is true, but it sure does make you wonder about a lot of things. What the book is really about is the politicization of science and the manipulation (even if unintentional) of scientific information. And all of this is presented in the form of an exciting, well-told, ...more
Kon R.
Mar 27, 2021 rated it it was ok
I was torn between a 2 or 3, but decided to go with the former. There is so much ranting about global warming in this book that the plot takes a back seat majority of the time. For a while you kind of forget that this is supposed to be a thriller and not a debate. I think what ultimately led me to go with the 2 star rating is the afterword. Ok, we get it! You think global warming is a ruse. We got that point clearly about 20% in. This novel should have been edited down to about 50% of its size. ...more
Ruth E. R.
Balanced perspective on the issues of Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming (aka "climate change"), politicized science, romanticized environmentalism, poorly informed decisions, and media bias.

Exciting! Provocative. From the brilliant mind of Michael Crichton, M.D. Like all of his books, he describes scientific concepts, and the new directions they may take, in the context of a dramatic story.

Extensively researched, contains footnotes and a bibliography, including his personal opinions, of
Jan 18, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The deck is stacked here. The lefty environmentalists are dimwitted TV actors who nearly rape women who don't desire their advances, or cynical ideologues, if not actual murderers. The climate change denialists are clear-thinking, evidence-admiring McGyvers. When the good guys are being followed by the bad guys, the bad guys are driving Priuses. The characters are puppets who recite talking points. They often refer to climate change (nonchange) graphs, which Crichton inserts in the text. They el ...more
Jan 28, 2008 rated it really liked it
Do you enjoy seeing pompous, self-righteous jerks get their rightful comeuppance? Then you will like this book. Dr Crichton delivers his usual competent tour through a scientific realm, mixing a decent amount of action and suspense with actual facts. Global warming zealots are the target here and he hits the bull’s eye, judging from the reaction about this book. The book reads exceptionally fast for all the science and background explanation necessary. For the average person with a little common ...more
Dec 19, 2007 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book, despite being a tree-hugger and one of the main themes of the book being that it questioned the entire concept of global warming. It was a very compelling page-turner, and I think Crichton does an excellent job of conveying the message not that global warming is necessarily false or that there aren't things we could all be doing differently in our lives, but that every news headline (and every study too) should be taken with a grain of salt and the data behind it shou ...more
Trigger warnings: violence, gore, cannibalism (seriously), car accident, murder. I think that's all, apart from offensive abuse of science.

So this was technically a reread for me. Except that considering I read it the year it came out, I'd forgotten literally everything that happens in the story. And I probably should have known that it would end very badly when my brother saw me grab it off the bookshelf the other day and said "Ooooh, that book is gonna make you REALLY mad..."

He was not wrong
Patrick Peterson
24 Sept. 2017
What an amazing book. A great action thriller by one of the best in the business PLUS dialog based on timely and crucial factual issues of science, politics, economics, psychology and culture. And backing up that dialog are non-fiction footnotes, an appendix and an "Author's Message" listing his particular assessments of the crucial facts and opinion as to what needs to be done. The integration of the fiction and non-fiction in the book was quite well done.

I enjoyed the twists and t
Nov 14, 2009 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: climate-change
Alright, I've waited to review this book long enough. The fact is, I waited so long because I could never find enough hate filled words to accurately describe my opinion of this book. However I don't think I'll ever find them, so here it goes.

A new goodreads friend asked me why I hate Michael Crichton. I decided I'll post my response here as my review:

As for Crichton, well it's kind of a long story. I'll tell you, but I'll understand if you choose to skip it. You'll notice that Jurassic Park an
Jul 30, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was intriguing to me. It is not what I would consider my normal genre, but the student I tutored last year did a report on Michael Crichton and this book was in a lot of the research we did. I had no idea Michael Chrichton was so multi-talented.
Anyway, my husband had listened to this book on CD while driving, and really enjoyed it, so I picked it off the shelf. Once I started reading, I had trouble stopping for food, drink, bathroom breaks, or even sleep. (This is the reason I can onl
2.0 stars. This book was somewhat of a disappointment for me as I have always been a Michael Crichton fan and the premise of the book (radical environmentalists as the bad guys) was intriguing. However, rather than letting the story or the various arguments make the case against "global warming", Crichton just beats the reader over the head with one-sided monologues. I was hoping for a more thoughful, and thus more powerful, expression of the premise. That said, it was an easy read and there wer ...more
Nov 06, 2008 rated it it was amazing
State of Fear by Michael Crichton
Beginning with the mysterious death of a wave analyst in France, this book has its moments of action all around the world; though, the main setting is Los Angeles, California in 2004. It also takes place in Antarctica, the Solomon Islands, Iceland, and several other places throughout the world, all the while chasing after the relentlessly evil plot of the eco-terrorist group ELF.
The reason I really enjoyed this book was how you were just dropped in the middle o
Ashley Daviau
Mar 02, 2019 rated it did not like it
This was most definitely not the book for me. I’ve enjoyed other books by Crichton but this one just fell flat for me. I felt like I was reading a science text book and while I do enjoy learning new things when I read, I don’t want to feel like I’m in school being lectured and that’s what reading this book felt like to me. The story got buried beneath all the jargon and it just about bored me to tears!
Dec 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller
This book was not quite what I expected. I mean it's all there in the plot summary: environmental extremists are running around the globe trying to cause or amplify "natural" disasters. Peter Evans, lawyer for billionaire and environmental enthusiast George Morton, is unwittingly sucked into the race to expose the bad guys and foil their plans.

Usually climate fiction strives to warn people of the dangers of global warming. I read Kim Stanley Robinson's, New York 2140 this year, which imagined a
May 24, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009, fiction
"So what [we:] need is to structure the information so that whatever kind of weather occurs, it always confirms your message. That's the virtue of shifting the focus to abrupt climate change. It enables [us:] to use everything that happens. There will always be floods, and freezing storms, and cyclones, and hurricanes. These events will always get airtime. And in every instance, [we:] can claim it is an example of global warming. So the message gets reinforced. The urgency is increased."

This fro
Apr 03, 2007 rated it really liked it
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
*Best Sellers* Bo...: November 2020 - State of Fear by Michael Crichton 6 4 Nov 29, 2020 09:26AM  
Too many books and not enough time! 1 15 Mar 02, 2019 06:57PM  
Goodreads Librari...: Add info 2 9 May 10, 2017 09:47AM  
Small Government ...: State of Fear by Michael Crichton 10 49 Aug 04, 2015 12:46AM  
Indian Readers: State of Fear 28 106 Dec 11, 2012 10:48PM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Bottled Lightning
  • The Andromeda Evolution (Andromeda, #2)
  • A Case of Need
  • The Sacred Well Murders
  • Counter Identity (The Remmich/Miller Series Book 2)
  • Dire Wolf of the Quapaw: a Jubal Smoak Mystery (Jubal Smoak Mysteries Book 1)
  • Binary
  • Segment of One
  • Get Rich or Get Lucky
  • The Hellfire Club
  • Timbuctoo
  • Sing a Song of Tuna Fish: Hard-To-Swallow Stories from Fifth Grade
  • Theories Of Nationalism: A Critical Introduction
  • Lament for a Maker (Sir John Appleby, #3)
  • Third World America: How Our Politicians Are Abandoning the Middle Class and Betraying the American Dream
  • Jesus Triumphant (Chronicles of the Nephilim, #8)
  • Burn the Ice: The American Culinary Revolution and Its End
  • The Devil in Vienna
See similar books…
See top shelves…
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 Doug ...more

Related Articles

Logan Ramsay has unintentionally become a better version of himself.   As an agent for the Gene Protection Agency, Logan receives an upgrade to...
222 likes · 37 comments
“Do you know what we call opinion in the absence of evidence? We call it prejudice.” 1256 likes
“Nobody dares to solve the problems-because the solution might contradict your philosophy, and for most people clinging to beliefs is more important than succeeding in the world.” 46 likes
More quotes…