Michael Crichton’s Timeline

It rankles me when I know I already wrote a review or did something and it literally vanishes into thin air. Whatever. I still love Timeline by Michael Crichton. The original review might be the same or similar. But, when you liked reading something the first time, try watching the movie next if there is an adaptation. Pst, Paul Walker and Gerard Butler are in the movie. Sigh. Maybe some other time I will tell you about how I saw Gerard Butler leaving the New York subway near Broadway. (My mother is a huge fan of him in Olympus Has Fallen.)

“The purpose of history is to explain the present – to say why the world around us is the way it is. History tells us what is important in our world, and how it came to be. It tells us what is to be ignored, or discarded. That is true power – profound power. The power to define a whole society.”

This one is centered around archeology and the development of a time machine. The team finds proof that their missing professor somehow ended up in the past, and off they go on a dangerous mission to rescue him. Or rather, they end up rescuing themselves in the process. It ends in a very angsty vein that I actually found very bitter sweet. One of the archeologist / time-travelers Marek falls in love with Lady Claire, played by Anna Friel. It’s a very charming and adventure-filled tale with the setting in 1357 England and France.

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“Professor Johnston often said that if you didn’t know history, you didn’t know anything. You were a leaf that didn’t know it was part of a tree.”

I would recommend Michael Crichton’s Timeline to readers for the ending alone. He is more often than not known as the writer of Jurassic Park, but I definitely ventured into reading a few of his other works. If you are interested, see the table of contents. He is genuinely one of the best science-fiction writers in contemporary literature. I’d say that in terms of style, prose, and inventiveness, he is on-par with Stephen King, J.K. Rowling, and Anne Rice. Timeline and Jurassic Park are two examples of how Michael Crichton weaves the science, even hypothetical and theoretical, with reality and turns it into a scientific realism. With the developments in genetic modifications, splicing, biomedical engineering, readers could believe the worlds he weaves are real. In fact, they might already be real somewhere in the world given that I think he actually did inspire many modern scientists.

Works Cited

Crichton, Michael. Timeline. New York: Ballantine Books, 2013.

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