(Photo from ETonline.com)
Crichton had a knack for a page-turner, as well as a gift for hitting on intriguing topics. I didn't read all his books, but I read some, especially "Jurassic Park." He could be a good example of what I thought of as airplane reading -- books that will let you pass the time reasonably well while stuck on a long flight. But he could also make you uncomfortable with his views. As the New York Times said in reviewing "Disclosure" (an unpleasant book and icky movie): "If you think Japan got a bashing in Michael Crichton's "Rising Sun," just wait till you see what happens to the cause of equal opportunity in his clever new novel, "Disclosure." " (Full review is here, if you're interested.) Still, he kept people going to bookstores, and could use scary dinosaurs to make people think about genetic tampering.