Thursday, January 04, 2007

The "Next" Book Review from the Verge

I was so excited to pick up the latest thriller by Michael Crichton, Next. The excitement was short lived as I waded through this sluggish mess.

I generally expect Crichton to provide fast paced thrills and interesting information. Unfortunately I was disappointed on both counts. Genetics and genetic engineering, fascinating science in their own right, are presented here in caricature.

A plethora of poorly defined characters with similar and sometimes identical names (which came into play a total of once in a completely predictable mistaken identity moment... and was clearly unnecessary) bogged down the plot.

Numerous loosely connected substories were meaningless and distracting. This lack of cohesiveness gave me the feeling that Crichton had cobbled together several previously discarded short vignettes about the dangers of tampering with genes. This mishmash of sidelines was distracting and once I even had to question what the main storyline was!

A book that could have been a hard hitting, shocking look into the future, was instead a weak, confusing amalgam of leftover stories with awkwardly heavy handed morals.

I don't know what you are reading, but I know what you shouldn't read... Next.


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