Lyon Arboretum

Saturday Book Review: MICRO by Michael Crichton & Richard Preston


The “Waipaka Arboretum”

Even if it is well below the standard of Crichton’s solo novels, MICRO is a competent thriller that has some great moments.  Like Jurassic Park, the concept is simple: a group of humans have to make it across a lush, hostile landscape filled with monsters, and time is running out.  In this case the monsters are not extinct dinosaurs but the living insects and other small creatures that populate a small nature preserve in Hawaii (based on the Lyon Arboretum in Oahu’s Manoa valley, where I took the photo attached to this post).  Through a cutting-edge industrial process gone wrong, the humans in the book are shrunk down to half an inch in size, and this fuels Crichton’s trademark combination of fear and wonder.  When relatively enlarged to the size of a house, a wolf spider can be just as fearsome and fascinating as Tyrannosaurus Rex. (Seriously, how many posts can I write about giant spiders!?)