If I like a franchise, I’ll devote vast amounts of time to explore every story from it. When I decide to read more stories in a franchise, I’m expecting the same elements or ideas or principles that made me like the franchise in every story they produce. Maybe I’m being too close-minded, but that’s the way I feel. When I saw Tess Sharpe’s book The Evolution of Claire (2018) I got really excited. I hadn’t read a Jurassic Park book in quite a while. Every feeling I experience when reading the first two books came back in a rush. And then I read the book.
Writing In A Borrowed World
The Evolution Of Claire (2018) shares several elements with the first two books in the Jurassic Park franchise—adventure feel, running from dinosaurs, mosquito in amber—but it was missing my favorite element of all: commentary on bioethics. The ideas Crichton wrote about in his book blew my mind. The focus of this book was narrow. The whole book is how Claire Dearing, Bryce Dallas Howard’s character in Jurassic World, started her career in the park. There are some elements of adventure, mystery and some dinosaur chasing after humans, but I felt it didn’t quite deliver what I wanted it to deliver. It seemed to me that they used the Jurassic Park universe to tell a generic coming-of-age story. Maybe I’m being too harsh. Michael Crichton is one of my favorite writers and I might be unconsciously expecting everyone to write exactly like him. The dinosaurs in the book delivered as advertised. They felt real enough to me. The island where the story takes place also feels like a living, breathing ecosystem. Sharpe did a great job developing those two aspects.
I’m not saying this is a bad book, on the contrary, the character development is really good. The characters feel real and the dialogue flows naturally. I would recommend this book to any die-hard Jurassic Park fan out there. It’s the perfect book to deepen the connection between the audience and the Claire Dearing character from the movies.
Ezra Carias is an author. You can find out about his latest book here.
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