Customer Reviews for

State of Fear

Average Rating 3.5
( 360 )
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5 Star

(139)

4 Star

(88)

3 Star

(63)

2 Star

(33)

1 Star

(37)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

16 out of 17 people found this review helpful.

Global Warming?

Due to the extensive biblio and fast-paced story by MC, I found this book myth-busting and thought provoking. A solidly contrasting view to the pulp-fiction, believe-what-you-are-told global warming hysteria.

Don't get me wrong. I believe that we have a grav...
Due to the extensive biblio and fast-paced story by MC, I found this book myth-busting and thought provoking. A solidly contrasting view to the pulp-fiction, believe-what-you-are-told global warming hysteria.

Don't get me wrong. I believe that we have a grave responsibility to be good stewards for the planet. It is, after all, the only one in our solar system that *we* can live on. But I appreciated the reminder to do my own thinking and ask a question or two or ten.

posted by DLBaird on January 24, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 22 people found this review helpful.

Propaganda

Crichton is a fine writer, but this effort might have been better as an essay. Not unlike the cardboard characters in Ayn Rand's 'novels,' the folks populating this thriller arrive on the scene bathed in cliche and exhibit very few realistic traits. The 'dialogue' betwe...
Crichton is a fine writer, but this effort might have been better as an essay. Not unlike the cardboard characters in Ayn Rand's 'novels,' the folks populating this thriller arrive on the scene bathed in cliche and exhibit very few realistic traits. The 'dialogue' between Kenner and the 'herd' who believe in global warming is boring (in a novel) and the environmentalists (all either arch hypocrites or ill-intentioned bureaucrats) is one-sided and obtuse. No character asks any of the questions that one wants to hear Crichton, er . . . Kenner answer. Peter Evans is particularly disappointing. And, really, eco terrorists killing scientists with poisonous octopi, lightning bolt attacks, hysterical actors eaten by cannibals - are we 13 years old? Some of the scientific information presented is interesting and I will undoubtedly follow some of the resources cited in the appendices. I would however, like to point out that Crichton neatly dismisses the environmentalists by keeping the focus only on global warming. There are lots of good reasons to reduce dependence on fossil fuels and curtail pollution that are political (say, isn't there a baseless war being fought?), physiological, and economic - these are not even addressed. He also seems to think that second-hand smoke is not a big deal. Oh well, he can certainly afford new, robotic lungs. Shoot, he can probably design them, too.

posted by Anonymous on August 1, 2006

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2012

    Well Written, But Inaccurate

    State of Fear is mediocre at best. Crichton misinterprets scientific information and tries to make it mean what he wants it to mean. Global warming is a serious issue that must be dealt with. Nonetheless, state of fear is slightly engaging, though not as good as Jurassic Park or Timeline.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 15, 2010

    hard to enjoy

    only the end was interesting. slow listening.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Global Warming Paranoia

    Michael Crichton's scepticism comes to the fore in this rant thinly disguised as a novel. Whilst the science he quotes is largely accurate, his conclusions drawn from the science are not helpful. The idea that we should wait until the climate models accurately predict temperatures five years in a row until we take any action is bizarre. We make decisions based on models and uncertainty all of the time. Why should we impose a different standard on the climate? The plot of this novel is ridiculous -the idea that environmental organisations need to fabricate abrupt climate change is an insult. We have known for 150 years that CO2 is a greenhouse gas; we have proved that the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere is increasing; we have proved that it originates from the burning of fossil fuels. What do we expect to happen? When the temperature increases recorded match the long-run predictions of the models, which they have now for thirty years, is it not time to advocate action rather than inaction? Crichton has written some great books, sadly this is not one of them.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 29, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    One of the worst of the Crichton collection!

    I never read the novel but did listen to the unabridged CD collection. I wanted a good yarn to listen to in my Saturn so I rented The State of Fear from my public library. After two disks, I quickly returned the set. VERY BORING! I can't believe someone as gifted as Crichton could write something so bland. I thought his Airframe sucked but SOF was worse. I wonder if SOF the movie will be better. It seemed Prey was Crichton's last interesting novel.

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 19, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I've read a lot better novels

    This book is about Global Warming and is ok enough to keep me reading nearly 800 pages. I think the subject was not a good item to write about, especially dealing with all the killing fighting. It would have been much better if it been shorter. It was so detailed, that you almost needed a scorecard to keep up with all the new characters and regions of the world they were in.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 22, 2008

    Disappointing

    A political statement disguised as a novel. Should have dropped the plotline and published it as nonfiction. Crichton can do (and has done) better.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2008

    Letting his biases ruin his books

    The author has constructed a book to dispute global warming. By using half truths he attempts to confuse the issue. Once a great writer he has sold out to corporate interests. Surely the oil industry will enjoy the damage this book will do to the issue of global warming.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 18, 2007

    i miss old crichton

    None of Crichton's newer novels pack the punch of his earlier works. I spent half of my time reading this book and hoping to be 'caught' the way I was when I read congo, prey, and the andromeda strain, but it never happened. The plot made little sense and it was all over the place. It felt like Crichton dragged his characters from freezing in antarctica to be captured by cannibals simply because he could. all of the 'facts' masqueraded as tiresome preachy pieces. even his burgeoning romance between the characters was never resolved or came to any sort of conclusion either way. definately a book worth missing

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 17, 2006

    Disappointing

    I have enjoyed many Crichton stories, but this was not one of them. It was nice to be exposed to a different perspective on the global warming scare, but one or two comments would have been sufficient. I felt the dead horse was repeatedly flogged. We got the point already! The storyline suffered as a result of repeating the political message. I found the characters absurd (they reminded me of the unfortunates marooned on the polar icecap in 'Deception Point'), and the plot leaden. I couldn't wait to be done with this book. If you love repetition, this story is for you. If you enjoy interrupting the flow of the plot with many, many unnecessary 'scientific' charts, you'll love this.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 26, 2005

    Not up to par

    I've read many of Michael Crichton's books and found this to be very disappointing. The story line was very un realistic and the characters extreemly shallow.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 22, 2005

    Novel with an agenda

    I bought this book because Michael Crichton writes very well. Or so I thought. Apparently, he does not believe in global warming, and the sole aim of this book seems to be to discredit the data and people supporting environmental policies. This made for a very disappointing novel. This book should instead have been titled 'Environmentalists are Crooks and Cheats'. The book is full of improbable plots and subplots, quite a few weak characters and a LOT of preaching. In short, a very painful book to read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2005

    Boring

    I've enjoyed most of Michael Crichton's books but this is the first one I've found to be boring. The controversy about global warming aside, the characters in this book are annoying and one-dimensional. The pacing is horrible and the lectures distracting. I think Crichton lost me when one of the characters, Kenner, said to another character 'we've found it too boring to explain everything to you.' Advice Chrichton should have heeded himself.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 25, 2005

    Interesting facts don't make an interesting story

    This story... very disappointing. The climax of this story was half the quality of rising events in Michael Crichton's other stories. Too many fillers are included in this book. The one-dimensional opinions are exhausted after just a little bit into the story! After a while, you get tired of Kenner's wise-mouthing, and Jennifer's sassiness. All other characters are boring, and I found I was forcing myself to turn the page. I didn't actually care if the characters died or not! Where's the loveable gorilla Amy from Congo? Or the Harry Benson we all felt sorry for in The Terminal Man? Bring back the characters and the plot, M.C., and ditch the exhausting global warming facts!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 3, 2005

    Asking to suspend too much disbelief this time

    I've come to enjoy and appreciate Crichton's unique talent for exposing the latest technology in current labs in a way that pushes it 'just over' the line of fiction, but in a very plausible way. This book not only fails to do that, but puts the characters in impossibly fantastical situations and them pulls them to safety in very predictable, boring, and unbelievable ways. I won't give them away, but if you read the book, you'll see, it's just too much to believe...even for a fiction book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 8, 2005

    Bland coloring on an otherwise highly interesting sketch

    I generally love MC's work but in this he seems to have completely abandoned character development. On top of this the action sequences are so far beyond improbable that I found that I could only get engaged by the science the story surrounds. Far and away the best part of the book is the afterword. The rest was bland coloring on an otherwise highly interesting sketch. .

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 11, 2005

    subject matter lacking

    While this is not the worst book I have listened to, it is certainly close to it. I am hooked on audio books and am constantly listening to one. I have actually fast forwarded through parts of this book and I have never done that before in any book. If I were reading it in print, I probably wouldn't finish it. The subject matter is boring!!!!!!!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 28, 2005

    Interesting ideas: poorly conveyed

    The scientific data that he used in the story was interesting and eye-opening. However, the story left much to be desired. I finished the book and said to myself 'That's the end?!' His characters were either total idiots or condescending know-it-alls and the situations that they ended up in were utterly ridiculous. I've only read 'Jurassic Park' so I'm not too familiar with his other work, but if it's anything like 'State of Fear' then I think I'll keep it that way.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2005

    terrible

    I am a student in high school and we read this book for extra credit, i felt it was terrible. I am in an accelerated class but there are some not so bright people in there and it took them 3 weeks to read this!, the graphs and scientific references confuse the text preventing this story from accheiving its true potential.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 23, 2005

    Information Worthy Only

    This book is worthy only for the information supplied that challenges the prevailing conventional wisdom concerning global warming. For a serious read of such information it is best to go to sources such as Bjorn Lomborg's 'Skeptical Environmentalist'. As for story line, develpement of character, believability, etc it is so weak and infantile (is it necessary that all characters be either extremely beautiful, intelligent, wealthy or all of the above?) that it was difficult to get through the book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 22, 2005

    Well.... He'll Always Have Timeline

    This book, I've got to tell you, isn't great, far from it, but then again it is better than Prey. But then again, almost anything's better than Prey.

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