Friday, January 23, 2015

New novel: Jurassic Park with dragons

If you're eagerly awaiting the next Jurassic Park movie and looking for something to sate your appetite for stories about theme parks with giant monsters, then you might want to give The Great Zoo of China a try.

The Great Zoo of China is the most recent novel by thriller writer Matthew Reilly. It is an unabashed clone of Jurassic Park, except the action is shifted to China and the monsters in question are dragons, not dinosaurs. However, these are not magical creatures, as Reilly provides a scientific explanation for the existence of the fire-breathing reptiles. (Turns out they are evolutionary cousins of the dinosaurs.) Reilly also says the novel is something of a homage to Jurassic Park, one of his favorite stories. Here's the cover blurb for the U.S. edition:
In the blockbuster and bestselling tradition of Jurassic Park comes the breakneck new adventure from the New York Times and #1 internationally bestselling author Matthew Reilly whose imaginative, cinematic thrillers “make you feel like a kid again; [they’re] a blast” (Booklist).

It is a secret the Chinese government has been keeping for forty years. They have proven the existence of dragons—a landmark discovery no one could ever believe is real, and a scientific revelation that will amaze the world. Now the Chinese are ready to unveil their astonishing findings within the greatest zoo ever constructed.

A small group of VIPs and journalists has been brought to the zoo deep within China to see these fabulous creatures for the first time. Among them is Dr. Cassandra Jane “CJ” Cameron, a writer for National Geographic and an expert on reptiles. The visitors are assured by their Chinese hosts that they will be struck with wonder at these beasts, that the dragons are perfectly safe, and that nothing can go wrong.

Of course it can’t…
The Great Zoo of China comes out Jan. 27 here in the U.S. (Correction: The book is now out in hardback. The ebook will be released Jan. 27.) It has been available since November overseas. The reviews I've seen are somewhat mixed, but that doesn't matter for me, as I'll swipe up any book that invokes Jurassic Park. You can learn more about the novel on the author's website or the publisher's site.

And speaking of Jurassic Park, a bit of news you may or may not have heard about: Pictures of the new genetically enhanced super-dinosaur from Jurassic World have leaked online. You can view them here. I'm not giving away too much by saying it's basically an albino Allosaurus.

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