Congo by Michael Crichton

congoIs any of the characters real? No. Not at all. But Micheal Chricton has put it to the extent that Amy, ERTS (Earth Resource Technology Services), Karen Ross, and everyone else are realistic. He has the story written in such an extent that you’re going to shiver, and stare at the door, imagining Amy, to come banging into it in a minute. This novel kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time I read. Michael Crichton does a good job displaying realism in this realistic science fiction novel.

Wait a moment, by the way, who is Amy? Amy is a female gorilla, who learns human sign language, and is the most smartest ape ever recorded. When she starts having nightmares, she’s trying to explain it to Peter Elliot using her sign language. Peter is confused and gives her a paper, thinking that maybe she would draw him what she thinks.

Amy’s drawing makes everyone suprised. It is the map of the legendary city of Zinj. At the same time, Karen Ross from ERTS is planning a trip to go there to search the valuble Type 2b Diamond. The team sent before is brutally killed by a peculiar grey gorilla. (Gorillas are black including the silverback gorillas, which have a silver patch of hair on the back which come with maturity). Amy and everyone travels into the Congo to find out about the type 2B diamond, the lost city of Zinj and the grey gorillas.

The theory is saying that the gorillas were trained by the humans to guard the diamonds, and they worked a revolt against their masters, causing a huge uproar, and the decline of the city of Zinj. The gorillas still have their guarding skills passed from generation to generation. During the expedition they encounter trouble with the native tribes and man-eating gorillas. Many people die and there is a lot of action in this thriller. Life threatening creatures and jungle weather creates a setting which makes this book so entertaining.

This was my third book of Micheal Crichton with The Lost World being the first and Timeline being the second. This book has a movie too, but the animation of the gorillas are bad, it was awarded with the worst picture. However, as a story, it is a delightful read because Crichton delivers on his trademarks: blending well-researched topics from diverse sciences, such as biology, anthropology, and archaeology. Finally, Crichton’s storytelling gift of framing the story as a true account (along with an extensive bibliography) is amazing. There are elements of Henry Rider Haggard’s King Solomon’s Mines here, which is based on an expedition to the same area, although that book is more thrilling and original. Great story, I had fun reading it. You will not be disappointed too.


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