This book is awesome in its over-the-topness. It's as if the author couldn't stop one-upping himself.
"I know, I'll write a book about giant manta rays. No, I'll write a book about giant man-eating manta rays! No, I'll write a book about giant man-eating manta rays that can fly! No, I'll write a book about giant, man-eating manta rays that can fly and move into a California national park!"
I'm not sure if I enjoyed the book as much as I enjoy telling people about the book.
OK...the premise is really a stretch. The description of the "thought processes" of a new species is a good try, but gives way too much credit for any "intelligence" this new creature demonstrates. The human characters are sympathetic, if sketchily drawn. Relationship dialog is kinda stilted. Not hard to read, but I found myself skipping big chunks because it just got to be TMI from time to time. It's a bizarre little quickie.
This is a very well-written and scary bio-thriller. What if an unknown species of large predator is really evolving out of human sight? What if this predatory species considers human beings tasty snacks? What if . . .
----From back cover: A previously unknown predatory species. Evolving just like the dinosaurs. Now. Today. Weaving science and thriller in a way not seen since Jurassic Park, NATURAL SELECTION introduces a phenomenally dangerous new species that is rapidly adapting in a way never before seen. When the scientists tracking it begin dying, the stakes are upped even further. Then the real hunt begins.
----USA TODAY calls it 'Jaws meets Charles Darwin.'
----BOOKLIST has it as one of the top ten novels of the year.
This book was either a five-star book, or a one-star book... it was laughably bad in places and the whole story was absolutely ludicrous... giant, flying manta rays? Although, I must admit, it did have its moments of genuine excitement. I mean, either way, it is a win-win book - you can read it for how bad it is, or you can read for how exciting you think it will be.... It lived up to its negative reputation that has somehow been deleted from the internet...
Fast, furious, great science that made it VERY believable, packed with action and a lot of fun. This book had it all for me. Even the characters were pretty good which isn't typical for this kind of read. I loved Natural Selection. Give it a shot.
This book was excellent! A strange creature resembling a manta ray is spotted in the Pacific ocean near the California coast where many seagulls, dolphins, and sharks have been disappearing. A team of scientists and biologists track it's migration north. They think it may be an evolutionary new species, predatory, deadly, rising from the ocean's depths, but why? What is causing it? Could it be a virus, nature's way of solving the world's over-population problem? I highly recommend this thrilling first novel by Dave Freedman. It was fantastic! I couldn't put it down and can't wait for another! Move over Michael Crichton.
Outstanding read. This book really caught me surprise. I was expecting horror but it's actually great action, a super creepy concept, and, most surprisingly, very, very smart. It's a real page turner, too, the kind that you can read cover to cover in a week. Some of the marketing materials compare it to Jurassic Park. I've read a lot of books that do that but they're awful. With Natural Selection, I thought the comparissons were accurate. Honestly, I liked this book a little more and I love Jurassic. Fantastic.