The Andromeda Strain Author:Michael Crichton Here is Michael Crichton at his best with the bestselling classic of modern science battling an interstellar plague — The Andromeda Strain sets forth the story of Project Wildfire - the crash mobilization of the nations highest scientific and medical resources when an unmanned research satellite returns to earth mysteriously and lethally contamin... more »ated.??Four American scientists are summoned under conditions of total news blackout and utmost urgency to Wildfire's secret laboratory five stories below the Nevada desert.??There - surrounded by the most sophisticated computer equipment, and sealed off from the outside world - they work against the threat of a worldwide epidemic.??Step by step they begin to unravel the puzzle of the Andromeda Strain until, terrifyingly, their microbacterial adversary ruptures the hypersterile seal of the lab and their already desperate search for a biomedical answer becomes a split second race against time.« less
It was probably cutting edge technology when it was first released in 1969 - heck, it was probably quite futuristic in many ways considering the first PCs didn't appear on the market until the 80's. He goes into a remarkable amount of technical detail which is pretty interesting and some of the speculative theories concerning alien life forms were new to me. All in all it is still a pretty good page turner.
I read this book because I saw it listed on SurvivalBlog's suggested reading. It gives you an idea of how a biological threat would be handled by the government.
It is written as an "expose" of the government's handling of an extraterrestrial bacteria that has returned to earth with a satellite and is causing bizarre deaths. Sort of anticlimactic at the end, in my opinion, but very enjoyable read.