How dangerous are squid bites

Michael S.

2.0 out of 5 starsBig book, thin story ...

Reviewed in Germany on February 7, 2005

Verified Purchase

My first book by Michael Crichton.

The book's first (and certainly not the last) disappointment is the seduction and murder of a scientific nobody by a beautiful, exotic woman who, after having towed him from a cafe, is very interested in his completely unspectacular environmental studies.

If you don't notice anything after five sentences at the latest, the book can be highly recommended.

Two government investigators, a millionaire, a lawyer, a couple of secretaries and a puffed-up, complacent actor go on a private plane on the hunt for environmental terrorists who are armed to the teeth.
With futuristic technology and some self-made natural disasters, they want to wipe out a few thousand human lives in order to make publicity for an environmental congress that is supposed to warn the world of a natural disaster that actually does not exist.

Instead of simply catching a bullet for this, the main characters in the book are poisoned by terrorists with octopus bites, lured into crevasses, passed on to man-eaters or made into human lightning rods by manipulated radio equipment.
It goes without saying that all these attacks by civilians who outgrow themselves irrationally when there is danger go wrong again (except for the actor, who was invited to lunch with the natives, everyone actually survives ...)

In my opinion, the greatest achievement of the author is undoubtedly to skilfully divert more than two thirds of the book with scientifically presented half-truths and sometimes quite exhaustive monologues on the subject of "global warming" from the fact that the entire story, with a little technical background knowledge and a little logic, is more complete Humbug is.

I've read a number of science thrillers and am also a little bit open-minded about ScienceFictin, Fantasy, Voodoo, and Horror every now and then. The mixture offered here of self-justifying story with half-hearted justifications and loose action snippets is really quite thin fare. Often questions remain unanswered or circumstances are constructed in order to drive the action in the desired direction. Usually this happens so conspicuously that the reader asks for pages when it will finally happen.

The rather weak story is only topped by the appendix, which with a bunch of literature references and a few pages of personal notes from the author tries to give the impression that the book has a real, scientific basis.
If you like science thrillers, Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child are recommended here. There is also a lot of voodoo here, but you realize from the start that the plot is completely fictional.
In addition, after 200 pages you are not completely in the picture (and therefore miles ahead of the actors).