If you’ve seen the movie*, you might think you know the story, but we’re here to tell you, you need to read the book.
On the page, this story has all the elements we loved in the film — characters who are intelligent, complicated, flawed people; dinosaurs that are both terrifying and sympathetic; challenging conversations about science versus ambition; and some of our favorite lines, like: ‘God created dinosaurs. God destroyed dinosaurs. God created Man. Man destroyed God. Man created dinosaurs… Dinosaurs eat man…Woman inherits the earth.’
In print, there’s time for Crichton to really dig into the problems inherent in the hubris of bringing extinct animals back to life. There’s the dawning realization that things have gone horribly awry, perilous dinosaur-vs-human fight scenes, peaceful moments with the most amazing creatures to walk the planet, and interpersonal sparks, romantic and otherwise — all played out in the lush, tropical jungles of an isolated island.
The story is told from several characters’ points of view, so we get to know the heroes and villains in equal measure. But let’s be honest: We all know that Ian Malcolm will be your favorite. Because we know these people and grow to care about them, we also worry that in the end, perhaps, none of them will survive. You must read to the end to learn their fate! And along the way, brave the T. Rex, the pterodactyl, the stegosaurus, and — of course — the raptors.
This breezy read is smart, sharply written, surprisingly funny, and impossible to put down.
You know what’s wrong with scientific power? It’s a form of inherited wealth. And you know what assholes congenitally rich people are. — Michael Crichton
The exhilarating sequel to Jurassic Park is The Lost World — also recommended!
*If you haven’t seen the film version of Jurassic Park, for the love of all that is good, please remedy that situation immediately. Thank you.
Strong Sense of Place is a website and podcast dedicated to literary travel and books we love. Reading good books increases empathy. Empathy is good for all of us and the amazing world we inhabit.
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