The Naturalist by Andrew Mayne
What It’s About:
Computational biologist Theo Cray is in the forests of Montana conducting field research. Theo is suddenly detained by local police as the suspect of a murder of one of his former students. After proving his innocence, Theo notices something strange about the evidence and it leads the investigators to believe that the tragedy was a result of a violent bear attack in the woods. Theo is not convinced that a bear killed his former student and takes matters into his own hands to figure out what has happened. The disturbing clues lead to what could possibly be a serial killer and it’s up to Theo to follow the patterns in nature to discover the killer’s identity.
What I liked:
Thrillers are normally a struggle for me to get into because I don’t like to read stories that involve alot modern day technology. This one was different for me because it’s set in the rural Montana and forest land. There is just something about the ruthlessness of nature that made the events in the story much more unnerving. I appreciated the fast pace of this book. Granted, the story didn’t start taking off until about halfway into the story. The writing style makes it quick to get to that point. After the clues starting forming together, the rest of the book felt like a whirlwind!
What I didn’t like:
There were some moments that Theo’s science explanations would be a little too complex for me but I just skimmed over those parts and was still able to keep up. Later on, all of his biology and medical knowledge really came together and made his character become super interesting. I found myself being impressed by the things he would do to discover the killer and track him down.
The easy reading and fast pace made this a very fun thriller to read. I liked that it wasn’t overburdened by car chases, gun fights, or high tech gadgets. There was enough guidance from the author for me to put the pieces together but still be surprised at the events that unfolded. I would recommend this to readers interested in:
- nature / forests
This book does sound fascinating, though I agree with you that usually if a book is too dense on its science I check out when reading it. It is a rare author, like Michael Crichton, who can explore heavy science and still make it enjoyable. Still, this book looks really interesting!
I still haven’t read a Michael Crichton book! I have Jurassic Park on my Kindle but you know how those TBR lists are 😉