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Congo de Michael Crichton
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Congo (1980 original; edició 1992)

de Michael Crichton (Autor)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
7,19592998 (3.27)89
Armed with the latest gifts of advanced technology, a California scientist (male), a ruthless corporation agent (female), and a mercenary hunter (male) face the dangers of the Congo jungle in search of the diamonds of the lost city of Zinj.
Membre:NathanDaniel
Títol:Congo
Autors:Michael Crichton (Autor)
Informació:Ballantine Books (1992), 336 pages
Col·leccions:Physical books
Valoració:
Etiquetes:Cap

Informació de l'obra

Congo de Michael Crichton (1980)

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» Mira també 89 mencions

Anglès (88)  Alemany (1)  Hebreu (1)  Castellà (1)  Totes les llengües (91)
Es mostren 1-5 de 91 (següent | mostra-les totes)
The skeleton of the plot is interesting, but all the scientific talk was too much for me (much of it going over my head). This made the reading slower and often caused me to loose my interest. But the action parts were good and my curiosity of where the story was going kept me invested enough to work through the boring parts. ( )
  ChelseaVK | Dec 10, 2021 |
“The corporate ruthlessness and deviousness that underpins the story hasn't changed at all.”

https://www.johncadamsreviews.com/single-post/john-c-adams-reviews-congo ( )
  johncadamssf | Sep 29, 2021 |
"Their entrance into the Lost City of Zinj… was accomplished with none of the mystery and romance of nineteenth-century accounts of similar journeys." (pg. 247)

A more-or-less conventional adventure story, Congo is a fun read but surprisingly uneven by Michael Crichton's standards. The through-line of the story is relatively simple, and recalls the likes of Rider Haggard: a scientific expedition journeys into the dark heart of the Congo rainforest in order to find a lost city. The main characters each have their own motivations, and there's plenty of pace and action to the story. There are also Crichton's signature info-dumps, which seem to be charming only when they come from this author.

The problem I had with the book was that it seemed misaligned. We never know which of the main characters to orient ourselves around, or which opponent to entrench ourselves against (Karen Ross is looking for blue diamonds; her adversaries are rival corporate expeditions, whilst Peter Elliot is looking to 'get out of town', and the adversaries he focuses the reader on are the troop of aggressive gorillas in the Congo). The character of Amy is completely charming – she is the ape brought along by Elliot, and has been taught to communicate with sign-language – but Munro is the stereotypical mercenary/white-hunter type and, aside from one or two good lines, has no real depth.

There are races against the clock, attacks on the jungle camp, tensions with Amy, and everything else Crichton can think of to add some vim, but these things rarely jive with each other. The first half of the book is rather slow, while the second half is too fast: with just a few chapters to go, we've not even reached the lost city, but then in a few dozen pages [spoiler] we have the discovery of the lost city, gorilla attacks, an escape, skirmishes with the army and with tribal warriors, and a volcanic eruption. While fleeing this, our characters conjure a hot-air balloon, of all the things, and the book then immediately ends with an epilogue telling us who got married and who didn't. [end spoiler]

It's hard to know what to make of this. It's not underwhelming, only uneven, and adventure thrillers rightly get a lot of leeway when it comes to plot and characterisation. We're here for easy fun, after all. Even so, the lost city was a damp squib, the grey gorillas aren't given the attention they deserve, and the greater part of the plot is crammed into the final fifty pages or so. A journey to a lost city is pointless if we can't savour it when we get there. Adversaries are disappointing and lack threat when they are defeated offscreen, as it were. And the tech ideas – which must have been stimulating in 1980, when the book was written – are now very much outdated.

This latter criticism is hardly Crichton's fault, of course, but when he devotes his signature extensive passages to rhapsodies on VCRs, electronic messages beamed by satellites, and computers with 256k memories, it's to the book's detriment when read in 2021. It strips the sheen away from the story, but whereas some books – and some of Crichton's – are robust enough to survive this stripping, Congo is rather brittle-boned beneath. The best Crichton books continue to teach, but between its talking apes, uneven plot and outdated tech, Congo shows itself to be too fanciful to do this. We get a decent adventure thriller, but one with an expiry date that, regrettably, has long since passed. ( )
1 vota MikeFutcher | Jul 31, 2021 |
Umm...I think I loved it because I loved the movie when I was 13? ( )
  LibroLindsay | Jun 18, 2021 |
Not as epic or well-written as works like Jurassic Park. I feel like he tried too hard to make this interesting but ran out of energy. The first half is a bit slow and has too much scientific jargon, but picks up quite a bit in the second half. Some of the human characters don't feel well written and the author has to keep pointing out their personality flaws/traits over and over again as for-shadowing to something bad happening later. The build up was well done but the ending felt rushed and abrupt. ( )
1 vota Arafyn | Jun 9, 2021 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 91 (següent | mostra-les totes)
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The more experience and insight I obtain into human nature, the more convinced do I become that the greater portion of a man is purely animal. --Henry Morton Stanley, 1887
The large male [gorilla] held my attention. . . . He gave an impression of dignity and restrained power, of absolute certainty in his majestic appearance. I felt a desire to communicate with him. . . . Never before had I had this feeling on meeting an animal. As we watched each other across the valley, I wondered if he recognized the kinship that bound us. --George B. Schaller, 1964
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For Bob Gottlieb
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Dawn came to the Congo rain forest. The pale sun burned away the morning chill and the clinging damp mist, revealing a gigantic silent world.
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Armed with the latest gifts of advanced technology, a California scientist (male), a ruthless corporation agent (female), and a mercenary hunter (male) face the dangers of the Congo jungle in search of the diamonds of the lost city of Zinj.

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Mitjana: (3.27)
0.5 4
1 61
1.5 21
2 267
2.5 54
3 725
3.5 100
4 541
4.5 25
5 181

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