Michael Crichton has come roaring back with an engaging, bookmark-biting historical thriller about one of his favorite subjects — dinosaurs ... Crichton thrives on stirring up historical and fictional events and characters, and that’s what makes this novel so rich. Besides real-life Cope and Marsh, a wonderfully rendered Wyatt Earp and brother Morgan ride into town; Robert Louis Stevenson makes a cameo, and so do some of the West’s most notorious outlaws. Through all the peril and suspense, readers will especially savor the dramatic changes in Johnson’s character as he grows quickly from snotty, immature jerk to hardened, heroic man. Dragon Teeth isn’t 'literary' fiction. Plain and simple, it’s Crichton fiction — a fun, suspenseful, entertaining, well-told tale filled with plot twists, false leads and lurking danger in every cliffhanging chapter.
...a fun and diverting romp through the Old West in search of dinosaur bones ... Dragon Teeth is filled with colorful Wild West characters, including Morgan and Wyatt Earp , and Crichton writes vividly, offering several suspenseful, racing passages ... The novel also touches on the debate between science and religion...But the best thing about Dragon Teeth might be the escape it affords us from such philosophical complexity.
It’s all very Tintin Goes West, the kind of adolescent adventure novel where a minor character succumbs to his fate with the last words, 'Damn Indians…Unfortunately, Dragon Teeth will offer little to Jurassic Park junkies. Even William’s accidental discovery of a set of Brontosaurus bones—the titular 'teeth of dragons'—become little more than a MacGuffin in a protracted, Yojimbo-esque stage piece set in the town of Deadwood. On to the next mosquito. Dragon Teeth has no bite.
The book is sure to garner a lot of attention—a posthumous book about dinosaurs from the creator of Jurassic Park—but it’s more than just a literary curiosity. It’s also a very good novel; in fact, taken among all Crichton’s novels, it’s one of his best, a beautifully detailed, scientifically engrossing, absolutely riveting story about the early days of paleontology.
The novel is a lean, propulsively readable adventure story, filled with seamlessly-interwoven exposition and sharp dialogue. It's easily the best thing with Michael Crichton's name on it since 1999's Timeline ... Along the way, Dragon Teeth delivers the science behind its dramatics with positively contagious energy ... These Crichton fossils being unearthed with such regularity are archeological gold.
Crichton pays homage, again, to Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Lost World in this entertaining historical thriller ... Fans of Crichton’s historical suspense books, such as The Great Train Robbery, will be pleased.
The manuscript for this novel was discovered in Crichton’s archives by his wife, Sherri, and predates Jurassic Park (1990), but if readers are looking for the same experience, they may be disappointed: it’s strictly formulaic stuff. Famous folk like the Earp brothers make appearances, and Cope and Marsh, and the feud between them, were very real, although Johnson is the author’s own creation. Crichton takes a sympathetic view of American Indians and their plight, and his appreciation of the American West, and its harsh beauty, is obvious. Falls short of Crichton’s many blockbusters, but fun reading nonetheless, especially for those interested in the early days of American paleontology.