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Next by Michael Crichton

3 Ratings: 3.3
Next by Michael Crichton - Medical/Genetics Thriller

"Is a loved one MISSING some BODY PARTS?  Are BLONDES becoming EXTINCT?  Is everyone at your dinner table of the same species?  Humans and chimpanzees differ in only 400 genes; is that why a CHIMP FETUS resembles a human being?  … see full wiki

Tags: Books
Author: Michael Crichton
Genre: Medical/Genetic Thriller
Publisher: HarperCollins; 1 edition (November 28, 2006)
Date Published: (November 28, 2006)
1 review about Next by Michael Crichton

Do our bodies and tissues belong to us?

  • Nov 5, 2008
  • by
'Next' is a complex novel which explores gene research, following a multitude of protagonists through frantic chases, courtroom hearings, treks to Sumatra, family tribulations, and ethical quandaries over just who owns our living tissues.

Some major protagonists are Rick Diehl, young CEO of BioGen Research, desperately trying to keep afloat for an upcoming IPO through a research cell line which came from a man named Frank Burnett. Burnet is involved in a court case against BioGen, with his daughter Alex representing him. Burnet wants the rights to his cell line. Funding BioGen is high-tech investor Jack Watson, an unscrupulous and extremely rich man.

Henry and Lynn Kendall believe they have two healthy children, until Henry's past creeps up to him in the form of Dave, a transgenic human/chimp created by using his cells. Henry can't stand the fact that Dave is to be terminated, so he brings Dave home to his family.

Marty Roberts is a corrupt pathologist stealing tissues from bodies that pass through the morgue, and selling them to tissue banks. Dr. Rob Bellarmino, director for the National Institute of Health, is widely known for stealing other scientist's ideas and using them for his own gain. Gail Bond, a Parisian scientist, owns an African Grey parrot named Gerard who not only has a fully human vocabulary but believes he is a person. Brad Gordon, Watson's nephew, not only can't keep his security position at BioGen, but also can't keep his hands off underage girls.

The cast of characters is even greater than mentioned, but Crichton manages to keep the storyline floating despite the rapidly changing characters and scenes. The story is about gene research rather than a particular protagonist, and the ending brings the separate characters and lives together in a satisfactory melding during highly climatic encounter.

Crichton also uses his special talent for blending facts into a fiction tale, bring up such odd subjects as human chimeras (people with two separate sets of DNA), "wet art", and uses a "news story" format to insert interesting facts and storyline changes.

'Next' is a fast paced read, a book you won't be able to put down. My favorite characters were Dave and Gerard, Crichton finding just the right attitude when writing from their POV's. 'Next' is certainly a book I highly recommend, never boring and highly suspenseful. Enjoy!
Next by Michael Crichton

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