My first encounter with a sci-fi novel and it turned out to be a fortunate one. I’m extremely happy that Crichton (for all those who don’t know him, he is the one who wrote, “Jurassic Park” and “Disclosure“) made my sci-fi reading journey so streamlined and unforgettable. This novel, “Prey”, transports you to the world of, computers, science, experiments and nanotechnology.
Being from a non-science background, I was not very comfortable with the idea of reading a sci-fi initially but fortunately enough I took this audacious decision and I’m glad I read it. The brilliant narrative strategy that Crichton adopts is his way of simplifying scientific/technological things that you do not need a solid science background to grasp them. And this is what makes you admire his writing style.
“Prey”, although begins with a plot about questioning fidelity between a husband, Jack & his wife, Julia but takes a turn so unpredictably terrifying that this novel becomes an ‘un-put-downable’. Jack has invented a ‘Pred-Prey’ programme which is based on the module of how a predator preys upon his food. Taking this programme as a basis, certain scientists, including Jack’s wife Julia, create a swarm of micro-robots which would then be given for serving in military services. These micro-robots will help in spying on the enemy because of their characteristic that they can combine themselves to form a camera and after that, can scatter into tiny dust particles (I know, the plot sounds amazing, right?!)
This nanotechnology experiment becomes hazardous when a swarm of these micro-robots escape the lab, whether due to a deliberate action on the part of some scientist or due to a mistake (is something I won’t be spilling in this review :p) and then, become extremely dangerous to human lives. This swarm is self-reproducing, it eats human flesh and can beat the hell out of you till you die by cutting off your oxygen supply.
Now, how this nanotechnology proves to be a fatal one for Jack and Julia’s relationship and for humanity at large, is something that you’ll have to buy & read this novel to know! So, no matter whether you are a sci-fi fan or not, this novel has something to teach everyone 🙂