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Dragon Teeth

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  18,279 Ratings  ·  2,289 Reviews
Michael Crichton's recently discovered novel—an adventure set in the Wild West during the golden age of fossil hunting.

The year is 1876. Warring Indian tribes still populate America’s western territories even as lawless gold-rush towns begin to mark the landscape. In much of the country it is still illegal to espouse evolution. Against this backdrop two monomaniacal paleon
Hardcover, 295 pages
Published June 1st 2017 by HarperCollins Publishers (first published May 22nd 2017)
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Rob Parsons Apparently this is a recently discovered manuscript. There was at least one other such, Micro. (And possibly one more?) Micro needed a bit of work and…moreApparently this is a recently discovered manuscript. There was at least one other such, Micro. (And possibly one more?) Micro needed a bit of work and its writer got a co-authorship, but sounds as though this one was more complete.(less)
Franklin Kendrick Considering the output of prolific authors such as Stephen King and others, it's not unimaginable that there are drafts of novels that have never seen…moreConsidering the output of prolific authors such as Stephen King and others, it's not unimaginable that there are drafts of novels that have never seen the light of day in their filing boxes and hard drives. The same can be said for Crichton. I think this book was a great addition to my Crichton collection. Stylistically, it felt like a cross between Eaters of the Dead and Jurassic Park. This was his attempt at an adventure story, no doubt. I recommend it just for the sheer enjoyment of a fast-paced, well-researched tale.(less)

Community Reviews

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Another posthumous offering from Crichton. I hope they keep finding them! This book was great! It is a western - pure and simple - gunfights, saloons, Indian war controversy, and even the appearance of some famous Western names. But, instead of gold nuggets, the treasure is dinosaur bones.

It's something I think people really don't think about. One of the best sources of dinosaur bones is the American West, and their discovery began right in the middle of all the tobacco chewing, stage coach hold
Henry Avila
Jul 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
Nine years after the untimely demise of the bright Dr. Michael Crichton a good writer , more talented than many believed, his third posthumous novel Dragon Teeth, is published (he's been busier than numerous authors still technically alive) . If you're looking for an early version of Jurassic Park you will be disappointed, but this book has a feel to it that will keep you turning the page...Essentially the story of two ruthless pioneering paleontologists , historical figures, and great rivals in ...more
Apr 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 Stars

"We are finding wonderful dinosaurs!" exulted Cope. "Wonderful, marvelous dinosaurs!"

Good ol' dinosaurs are wonderful and marvelous as always, and men will always be men: competitive, violent and vengeful. Dragon Teeth is Crichton's third posthumous publication, and fourth historic fiction (Fifth, if you count Timeline). The novel tells the fictionalized account of historic 19th century Bone wars, a race between two paleontologists to unearth and claim dinosaur bones.

Meet Edward Dri
Bob Milne
Apr 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Unlike so many ghost-written novels that are 'polished' after an author's death, Dragon Teeth does feel like the completed manuscript it is purported to be. In fact, it reads very much like one of Michael Crichton's earlier historical novels - The Great Train Robbery, Eaters of the Dead, and even (to some extent) Congo. It is a leaner, simpler sort of story, more concerned with the facts of the past than the theories of the future.

Readers with an interest in paleontology are likely already famil
Montzalee Wittmann
Jun 18, 2017 rated it it was ok
Dragon Teeth by Michael Crichton is a book of Crichton's I didn't like. I have read all of his and loved them all but this was so un-Crichton. It lacked the spark, the thrills, the adventure that kept me glued to the others. I was bored to tears and forced myself to finish it. I got this book from the library and noticed the total ratings on it was only 3 stars and wondered why, now I know.
Jul 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Not what I expected, but I don't think there is anything he has written that I wouldn't love.

I was hoping this would have the feel and flavor of the Jurassic Park novel, which is one of my all time top 5 books that I have read. If you are hoping for the same thing, I can tell you unequivocally this is completely different. Are there dinosaurs? Yes, but none that have been cloned or a threat to mankind. In fact, this story takes place in the year 1876, when paleontologists didn't get near the re
May 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorite-fluff
Most of us get a fuzzy feeling when an author seems to include us in an inside joke. The writer is, of course, someone we'll never meet let alone befriend, but unlike appreciating the performance of an artist or actor or musician, the musing of a writer feels more personal. In just one novel, he or she whispers into our mind's ear for ten or fifteen or twenty solid hours as we read. In a way, it resembles conversation.

When that time together brings us to familiar territory, it can feel like trav
Aug 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
Such is the draw and popularity of Michael Crichton that nine years after his death, his new releases are still going to be bestsellers.

Truth be told, before I began reading I knew nothing about his 2017 posthumous publication, found from notes and put together lovingly by his wife and his literary estate. Also, to be honest, there are gaps and loose ends that a fan would not expect from the meticulously researched and well written books we have all come to love from him. But this is also reson
Mogsy (MMOGC)
3.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

I’m a huge Michael Crichton fan, but admittedly I went into Dragon Teeth with reservations. After all, posthumously published works tend to make me a little wary, and the last two novels published after Crichton’s death have not exactly disabused me of this bias, reinforcing my belief that most “found manuscripts” are doomed to disappoint. So you can imagine my surprise when I finished this book and found that I really e
Steven Brown
Aug 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
In 1876, the hunt for ancient bones is more thievery than science. When a spoiled Yale student takes a bet that he can’t survive one summer in the Wild West with paleontologist Othniel Charles Marsh, he’s in way over his head.

His boss might be paranoid, but the bullets are real.

This is one fantastic story! Dragon Teeth is a thriller set in the past (not a Jurassic Park novel), so the antagonists read like Indiana Jones villains in the Wild West. (Not dinosaurs.) But here’s the crazy thing: they’
Dec 31, 2016 marked it as to-read
Shelves: not-out-yet
How many of these "recently discovered" manuscripts are there?!
So a manuscript of Michael's, the god behind one of my favourites ever Jurassic Park, had a manuscript lying in wait all along. And it really is original. No question,

Dee Arr
May 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
What began as a measure designed to protect a young man’s pride soon turned into an adventure that William Johnson would not soon forget. Michael Crichton’s novel about the early days of paleontology in the United States is a mixture of whimsy, seriousness, humor, and just good old fun.

The late Mr. Crichton’s manuscript was found in his files by his wife, and it is wonderful to read a “new” novel by a talented author. Though the character of William Johnson was born in Mr. Crichton’s imagination
May 29, 2017 rated it it was ok
All new Crichton!

New in the sense that the novel is new, but not so new in the sense that this novel takes place in the late 1800's.

And the verdict: it sure is a snooze.

Crichton has always been hit or miss for me. He's had his gems: Jurassic Park, State of Fear, even Airframe was all right. But with Dragon Teeth it really felt like Crichton was just phoning it in.

This was a lazy, half-ass attempt at a novel. Now, I am not oblivious - I do know that Crichton is no longer alive; however, this wa
Aug 04, 2017 rated it liked it
This was such a fun book . it is the perfect book to take to the beach (specially during this hot summer), to read on the train or take on vacation. The plot is not very complex , but cowboys and dinosaurs are doesn't get any better than that . The main character goes through a tough journey and finds out that sometimes caring is an important trait for a man to have. The dinosaur bones and the rivalry between two of the characters helps give the story context and add another tier t ...more
Aug 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
In 1803 Thomas Jefferson said it would take a thousand years for the West to be settled. By 1876 he was proven gravely wrong. This is Crichton's "lost manuscript" that was been published.

It is one of his historical fiction novels (much like "Great Train Robbery" or "Eaters of the Dead"). In this case the year is 1876 and the topic twofold. The first is the competition between Drs. Marsh and Cope. Marsh was a Yale man and Cope a Univ of Penn man. Both were Paleontologists. I had not realized jus
Jun 10, 2017 rated it did not like it
So sorry to say that this book was just awful. It looked to be cobbled together in such a haphazard manner that it seemed a child wrote it. I am sorely disappointed in this as I have often so enjoyed Crichton's novels. That being said this book was suppose to be "found" many years after Mr Crichton's death. Makes one wonder! This is no Jurassic Park nor is it a prequel to that amazing book that entertained so many so very well.
A previously unpublished book.

If you're expecting Jurassic Park, the prequel, you will not get it. This is a Wild West type of story.

To be more precise, a historical fiction tale set in the Wild West of 1880s about the literally cutthroat competition between 2 key figures in the hunt for dinosaur bones.

A rare step away from his normal speculative fiction back into the early days of dinosaur fossil hunting. What we now call palentology but with less bloodshed.

From his research, he presents a n
♛ Garima ♛
Who is writing this book?

"Michael Crichton passed away from lymphoma in 2008. He was 66 years old."
Jun 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
When I was a little girl I went to the NY World's Fair. There were two things I remembered; Belgian Waffles and dinosaurs. Not long after that I was taken to the Academy of Natural Sciences; in Philadelphia, when I saw my first fossils. At that time I didn't know that many of those fossils were collected by Edwin Drinker Cope. I didn't learn about the 'war' between Cope and Yale paleontologist Othniel Charles Marsh until I introduced my son to dinosaurs 25 plus years later. In 2007 I was able to ...more
Jun 23, 2017 rated it liked it
I love the subject of paleontology so wanted to read this as soon as I read the description. This was a quick read but it was interesting and has me now craving Jurassic Park and the Lost World again. Think I will be heading the library soon to get those!
Mattia Ravasi
Jun 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Video review:

My second favorite Michael C gives us one last gem in the form of a Western adventure set within the context of the 1800s Great Dinosaur Rush. At times you can feel this is the skeleton of what may have been a longer and more complex adventure, but that only means that the pace is even faster, and indeed there's enough thrills and tension in here (and guest stars!) to make it a total pleasure to read.
Jul 13, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio, overdrive
The blurb for this book really tells all there is to know about it. There were a lot of info dumps about Indians, Custer and paleontology. I thought it was just ok.
Erin Clemence
May 10, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks
This review is for the audio version of “Dragon Teeth” by Michael Crichton, narrated by Scott Brick and published by Harper audio.

Audio: 4 stars Brick’s soothing, deep voice speaks to years of experience and training. He tells the story well and speaks in a consistently eloquent tone. Brick read the entire novel in his monotone voice, and did not differentiate between characters, which I don’t love. Also, his voice, although calming, has a slight tendency to be a bit too relaxing. If he
"Hunting for bones has a peculiar fascination, not unlike hunting for gold. One never knows what one will find, and the possibilities, the potential discoveries lying in wait, fuels the quest." (Passage from William Johnson's journal)


"Readers unfamiliar with this period of American history may be interested to know that Professors Marsh and Cope were real people, their rivalry and antagonism depicted here without exagger
Dec 07, 2017 rated it liked it
Ancient discoveries
An epic rivalry
An adventure that made history

Says the cover page.
And all this is true.

But somehow this book didn't have the same zing packed by Jurassic park or hid other works.

Read more like a Westerner than a quest for dinosaur fossils.
I am always enamoured by the scientific facts that adorn books such as this. This one sadly lacked in those , though I came to k ow a lot about the war between the native Indians and the pilgrims to conquer the wild.west.
Saw some lovely scen
I don’t normally enjoy biographical fiction or fictionalised biography, but I loved this. I don’t know much about this era of American history. I don’t think I knew about dinosaur fossils being found in America. The only other book I’ve read about fossil hunters is Remarkable Creatures by Tracey Chevalier. The topic would not have been so fascinating to me had it not been about the Wild West too, however. Cope and Marsh were real rivals and prominent in their field. #thoroughly enjoyed.
Donna Backshall
Meh. It's not even worth the five minutes to review. I can't believe how long I waited for an Overdrive copy, but thankfully I didn't have to pay even a cent for this weird, goes-nowhere-interesting story.

In a word, BORING.

Don't believe the hype, there is no wild adventure here, no characteristically Crichton oddities to spice up the story. I toughed it out all the way to the end, even though it was as dry and dusty as Deadwood itself. Just a bunch of boring old bones.
Eric Mikols
Feb 13, 2017 rated it liked it
Original review found at

I read Dragon Teeth months ago because I got a Advance Readers Copy because I'm a librarian, but I'm talking about it now because I'm a bad blogger.

So this is a western, using dinosaur bones as a means of getting me to read a genre I tend to avoid. In fact, this might only be third western I've ever read (the other two being Doc by Mary Doria Russell and Appaloosa by Robert B. Parker, both recommended). I can't say I'm not disappoi
Aug 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018-read, western
A fast-paced western about the relationship between Othneil Marsh and Edward Drinker Cope, two famed bone hunters in the late 1800s in the US. Both men contributed greatly to the collections of museums with their finds, and to slowly changing the view of life on this planet in the past. The men began as friends, but eventually became enemies and constantly attempted to outdo the other in the numbers and qualities of their scientific discoveries.
Crichton uses fictional character William Johnson t
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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 Dougla ...more

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“You would think that people who had experienced injustice would be loath to inflict it on others, and yet they do so with alacrity. The victims become victimizers with a chilling righteousness. This is the nature of fanaticism, to attract and provoke extremes of behavior. And this is why fanatics are all the same, whatever specific form their fanaticism takes.” 17 likes
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