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The Andromeda Strain
The Andromeda Strain
Author: Michael Crichton
The United States government is given a warning by the pre-eminent biophysicists in the country: current sterilization procedures applied to returning space probes may be inadequate to guarantee uncontaminated re-entry to the atmosphere.Two years later, seventeen satellites are sent into the outerfringes of space to "collect organisms and dust f...  more »
ISBN-13: 9780060541811
ISBN-10: 0060541814
Publication Date: 11/1/2003
Pages: 352
Rating:
  • Currently 3.6/5 Stars.
 259

3.6 stars, based on 259 ratings
Publisher: Avon Books
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover, Audio Cassette, Audio CD
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reviewed The Andromeda Strain on + 29 more book reviews
And my streak of reviewing thrillers continues with the second epidemiological thriller in a row! The Andromeda Strain is another reread. I picked it up because (a) I had the book sitting on the shelf doing nothing, and (b) I had already reread Carriers so I figured, "Why not?"

It is the story of a bunch of scientists doing their scientific thing in trying to find the cure to a plague that originates in outer space. Well, not really foreign outer space so much as simply really, really, really high up in Earth's atmosphere outer space. As it so happens, we do have such archaebacteria that can live in these totally inhospitable environments on Earth, so the premise isn't that far fetched. Yes, I know the culprit in this case is a virus and not a bacterium, but still ...

This novel is chock full of government (in)efficiencies, (pseudo?)epidemiological jargon, computer read outs, and time pressure to cause the suspense. The climax and problem that beset the novel aren't what originally appear to be the case. Many reviewers are incredibly upset that the initial problem resolves itself, while completely missing the point that the race-against-time to save the lab from certain destruction is the actual climax.

This novel reminded me a lot of Mount Dragon , or perhaps Mount Dragon reminded me a lot of The Andromeda Strain as they both greatly detail the procedures in place to keep the contagion from spreading out of the lab and becoming an epidemic, and in both cases and explosive is the ultimate failsafe.


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