Monday, December 01, 2014

Book Review: The Great Zoo of China by Matthew Reilly

Book: The Great Zoo of China

Author: Matthew Reilly

No. of Pages: 500

Genre: Fiction, Action Thriller, Suspense

Publisher:  Pan Macmillan Australia

Matthew Reilly (MR) is back in his elements with a bigger-than-before and stranger-than-before action thriller.

MR does it again ... In style - At a grander scale - With dizzying visuals and absolutely high-octane fast-paced unbelievable-but-believable action-suspense – and as an MR fan; I loved every minute of the fun-tastic roller-coaster ride that MR creates in the Zoo.

There are sentences which would never make sense in any other author's novel but in MR's high-octane mind-numbing action thrillers; they seem perfectly OK. How else do you explain a reader being OK with a line like "Oh My God! The dragons are throwing cars at me" and that is just about the 'tip of the iceberg' since there are MUCH LARGER things getting thrown by MUCH LARGER dragons in the story which only gets bigger by the moment.

MR has introduced a new set of characters in this story … which I hope will appear again in future. CJ is a hard nut to crack and a multi-layered character (just like Scarecrow or Jack West Jr) and it will be good to see her again along with her brother.

The Great Zoo of China is actually a wrong title … as is said in the story itself, it is a temporary branding for the 'The Great Dragon Zoo of China". MR has taken a mythical creature and brought them back to life (just as the Dino's were brought to life in Jurassic Park). He does a swell job of it and continues to amaze the reader at every step of the story. The scale of this novel is simply HUGE as compared to anything MR has written before and at times, you take a pause and wish you were watching a Hollywood rendition of the book (and I really do hope this one gets converted) 

The story builds the suspense for the readers since they not only suspect that the story will only get bigger and bigger (and wondering how could it get any bigger); MR keeps throwing in suggestions of an impending suspense.

MR has gone larger than life and if a movie gets made out of this movie (and i would love to see it) ; it would be a combination of India Jones meets Jurassic Park meets Godzilla meets Jason Bourne (and you can add your own action thriller here) ....

An absolute un-put-down-able!!

The book actually has different cover designs for different regions and all of them are pretty interesting. All 3 of them follow completely different themes and even schemes and it's a delight to see how the publishers perceive their audience (country/region wise) and interpret their preferences.

I have been an MR fan ever since my best friend Shraddha made me buy his first novel CONTEST. After that, I have read all his works (except Troll Mountain). I am now eagerly waiting for his next Jack West Jr. novel … It has been quite some time since the last one.

Note to MR: At the end of the Dragon Zoo story, CJ moved to Australian outbacks … which is where Jack West Jr also resides. My best friend and I feel that CJ and Jack coming together will be a formidable team … as formidable as Scarecrow and Mother. And yeah, that will only help you take your novels to the next level of Big Bad Adventure!!!

I would readily recommend this book to anyone with even a mild sense of adventure (it will be like an espresso shot to their adventurous streak). The book is available on and the Great Online Shopping Festival (GOSF) introduced by Google is also around the corner (10th to 12th December) with some amazing GOSF deals. . In addition, you will find some really good offers on books (and other things too) at cuponation

Ratings on Book Review Parameters:

Cover Design: 3.5 / 5

Writing Style: 4.5 / 5

Characters:     4.0 / 5

Story / Plot:     4.0 / 5

Climax:            4.5 / 5

Overall:           4.0 / 5   

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