Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Congo by Michael Crichton (CBR-IV #3)

Cannonball Read IV: Book #3/52
Published: 1980
Pages: 496 (1,271 total pages this year)
Genre: Fiction/Thriller

In Congo, an American technology company sends a team deep into the Congo rainforest to find a lost city that supposedly has a blue diamond mine. The first team doesn't fare to well and are all killed by having their skulls crushed. So, another team is sent out to figure out what happened. Turns out there are some crazy killer gorillas out in the middle of the Congo. 

It is a Crichton book, so of course there's a lot of scientific mumbo-jumbo that I couldn't understand if I tried. Somehow Crichton figured out how to make a scientific thriller readable to just about anyone. I still can't figure out his secret, but I just keep reading his books despite my hatred for science. However, somewhere along the line he did figure out how to better balance the science with the rest of the book. This one was much less dry than some of his earlier works. 

I liked the Indiana Jones type of jungle adventure with the old temples in the forgotten city and the search for diamonds. I was also highly entertained by the horribly outdated technology (the book was published in 1980). They were constantly bragging about their 256k of RAM.

Overall, the book was a pretty decent adventure novel. I'm having trouble thinking of what to write because it was pretty much a middle-of-the-road Crichton novel. I liked it better than The Andromeda Strain, but less than Sphere or Jurassic Park. If your're a Crichton fan, read it. If not, try one of his others before Congo.

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