Authors: Douglas Preston & Lincoln Child
Genre: Suspense, Thriller
Number of Pages: 468
Available Formats: Hardcover, paperback, E-Book, Audio
Rating Scale: 5Q, 4P
Links to Author’s Website and Interviews
Links to Reviews
A monster is loose and no one is safe.
This story takes place at the New York Natural History Museum, where grisly murders are beginning to take place. The first of which are two boys that have been brutally murdered, with their hypothalamus ripped out. This draws the attention of the police department, led by Lieutenant D’Agosta. The FBI also gets involved, as agent Pendergast begins to lead the team. Margo, a botanist at the museum, begins to get involved and suspects a connection between the murders and a shipment from the Amazon. Despite the murders, the museum goes ahead with the big debut of their supernatural exhibit but things quickly turn for the worse when more bodies are discovered.
I think this is a fantastic book. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time. It did have some science background thrown in, but it didn’t bother me that much. People often compare this to Michael Crichton, but I think this book does a better job of balancing the more science-heavy aspects with the suspense and horror of the story. The last quarter of the book is one of the most exciting final acts I’ve read in a long time. While the characters aren’t as well developed as I would like, I think the story more than makes up for this. The monster is also really unique and the twist at the end was well-done and interesting. I can’t wait to read the sequel.
Fast-paced, suspenseful, gritty
Contest by Matthew Reilly
Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton
Awards & Lists
Garden State Teen Book Awards (New Jersey): Fiction (Grades 9-12)
YALSA Best Books for Young Adults: 1996
• Discuss the character of Whittlesey and his transformation.
• Discuss the twist ending and why the authors chose to have the audience learn about it and not the characters.
Justification of Selection
I was interested in reading something suspenseful and a little adventurous. This book, although a little more horror than I wanted, immediately caught my eye. The premise sounded creepy and a lot of fun. I liked the idea of it being set in a museum.