Wednesday, November 13, 2019

The Andromeda Evolution

The Andromeda Evolution by Michael Crichton, Daniel H. Wilson
HarperCollins: 11/12/19
eBook review copy; 384 pages
hardcover ISBN-13: 9780062473271

The Andromeda Evolution by Michael Crichton via Daniel H. Wilson is a very highly recommended sequel to the science fiction classic.

In The Andromeda Strain (1969), an extraterrestrial microbe came crashing down to Earth and nearly ended the human race. Accidental exposure to the particle killed every resident of the town of Piedmont, Arizona, save for an elderly man and an infant boy. In the decades that followed, Project Eternal Vigilance has been watching and waiting for the Andromeda Strain to reappear, while research secretly continued on the microparticle. Now, in the Brazilian rain forest an anomaly has been detected and it is identified as the Andromeda Strain. A next generation Project Wildfire team of scientific experts from around the world is called together to try and stop the apocalyptic threat. The diverse team of experts must try and get through the jungle and figure out a way to stop this outbreak of the Andromeda Strain before it annihilates all life on Earth.

The narrative follows five days of heart-stopping action, following the team in the jungle and through reconstructed transcripts, interviews, and descriptions of video footage. The writing is outstanding. Wilson, who is an excellent choice to continue the story, captures the voice of Crichton while updating the technological aspects of the story to fifty years in the future. While Wilson introduces us to the very human team members called in to stop the threat, he keeps the fast-paced plot moving along quickly and the tension building to stunning levels. The team members have their specialties and are a diverse group. Wilson also shows their flaws, making them feel like real human beings called in to stop an impossible situation.

I loved every part of this wildly exciting continuation of the original novel. There is an explanation of what the Andromeda Strain is and how it threatens life for those who never read Crichton's original novel, so reading the original is not a requirement to appreciate this continuation of the story. The denouement is a exciting, heart-stopping scene that should ensure this will be a movie someday. Each chapter opens with a quote by Crichton, which I appreciated.

Disclosure: My review copy was courtesy of HarperCollins.

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