Speculative fiction holds a special place in my heart. I would consider the 7th grade to be the year that I really became as dedicated to reading as I am today. The book that got me to transition from young adult literature to the heavier adult stuff was Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton. Since then I’ve read everything that I could from Dr. Crichton, even trying to track down the non-fiction works that are out of print with varying levels (read: complete lack of) success. Those of you who know Dr. Crichton’s work will know where I’m going with this, because Michael Crichton is the disputed king of modern speculative fiction. Between Sphere, Timeline often thought of as the goofy Michael Crichton novel, the controversial State of Fear and the admittedly pretty impenetrable and egotistical Next, Michael Crichton has dominated the genre since the 1980’s with a slew of highly intelligent and entertaining titles. So why are these stories (at least to me), the gold standard in speculative fiction? In order to dissect such a question, I’ll be looking at another novel by a different author with similar themes and traits, in particular this novel deserves a bit more recognition by the public at large.