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Dinosaur Summer Paperback – December 3, 2008

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$17.06 FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Temporarily out of stock. Order now and we'll deliver when available. We'll e-mail you with an estimated delivery date as soon as we have more information. Your account will only be charged when we ship the item. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Remember Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Lost World, in which an expedition led by Professor George Edward Challenger discovered an Amazonian plateau where dinosaurs still roamed? In Dinosaur Summer, Greg Bear assumes that Challenger's expedition really took place, and that for nearly 50 years dinosaurs have been relatively commonplace in zoos and circuses throughout the world. But the beasts are not easily kept in captivity, and slowly but surely their numbers are dwindling. Now there is only one dinosaur circus left, and it's shutting down. The dinosaur trainer wants to return his animals to the wild, so an expedition is organized to return the dinos to their nearly inaccessible plateau. Accompanying the group (which includes special-effects master Ray Harryhausen) is 15-year-old Peter Belzoni, the son of the National Geographic photographer covering the story. The boy is about to have the adventure of a lifetime. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Kirkus Reviews

Fantasy built on a fantasyin Bear's alternative 1947, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's The Lost World wasn't fiction, but fact!mingling real and imaginary characters with a quite unbelievable hodgepodge of defiantly unextinct beasties from the Carboniferous on up. Circus Lothar, the last dinosaur circus, is closing down, and its animal trainer, Vince Shellabarger, is determined to return his charges to their home, the isolated Venezuelan plateau of El Grande discovered by Professor Challenger in 1912. National Geographic's Anthony Belzoni will cover the event, assisted by his 15-year-old son Peter. Filming the cavalcade will be Willis ``OBie'' O'Brien (of King Kong fame) and special effects/animation genius Ray Harryhausen. The tough journey is made more difficult by the Venezuelan Army's quarrel with both the politicos and the local Indians. Still, the expedition reaches the rickety bridge leading on to El Grande, and most of the animals cross safely. But Dagger, a vicious predator, escapes from his cage; predictably, the bridge falls, marooning Peter, Anthony, OBie, Ray, and Billie, an Indian pursuing a spirit quest. After various adventuresthe group is menaced by critters ranging from giant salamanders and hungry therapsids to huge ``death eagles''they make it back, minus assorted limbs and teeth, bearing a couple of precious eggs. Amiable, sometimes stirring incident-packed baloney: a yarn that screams I wanna be a movie! (illustrations) -- Copyright ©1998, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 322 pages
  • Publisher: e-reads.com (December 3, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0759295840
  • ISBN-13: 978-0759295841
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,341,321 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Greg Bear is the author of more than thirty books, spanning thrillers, science fiction, and fantasy, including Blood Music, Eon, The Forge of God, Darwin's Radio, City at the End of Time, and Hull Zero Three. His books have won numerous international prizes, have been translated into more than twenty-two languages, and have sold millions of copies worldwide. Over the last twenty-eight years, he has also served as a consultant for NASA, the U.S. Army, the State Department, the International Food Protection Association, and Homeland Security on matters ranging from privatizing space to food safety, the frontiers of microbiology and genetics, and biological security.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Robert James on August 6, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
As somebody who spent his early adolescence watching old monster movies like "King Kong" and reading old science fiction like "The Lost World" by Arthur Conan Doyle (the creator of Sherlock Holmes, if you don't know), I was truly excited when I picked up "Dinosaur Summer." It was such a great idea, to treat the tale of Professor Challenger as if it actually happened. But when I was done reading it, I was curiously disappointed. I had loved the premise, and even enjoyed parts of the narrative, but when it was done, I felt like I'd been cheated. I think the mixed reviews this book has received come from this: we were led into the book expecting a kind of Golden Age science fiction, with lost worlds and intrepid professors and risks and dangers and escapes, and we were presented with a 1990s sensibility of moral and environmental failures. Nobody succeeds at much of anything in this book, which runs directly counter to the genre it's attempting to revive. I love Greg Bear's work, especially "Blood Music," but here I think he forgot the whole point of an homage: to recreate the spirit of the original work. Still, I'm glad I read "Dinosaur Summer," if only because it sent me back to the originals again (which is another goal of homage, of course).
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By D. Thierry on July 27, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I'm not surprised that this book has been underrated by many readers. It comes from another age, when Doyle and Burroughs were the hottest adventure writers around. It was a big challenge for Bear to satisfy the old hard-liner of "Lost World" but the "exercice de style" was achieved to the perfection. But don't be surprised if under the apparent naivete inherited from the Lost World a very clever, educated and gripping story is developping. After all, that's the Bear Touch.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer VINE VOICE on September 17, 2007
Format: Paperback
A departure from Bear's usual hard sf, Dinosaur Summer is a love letter to the thunder lizards and to those who brought them to life in literature and on the silver screen. Bear posits an alternate reality where Conan Doyle's Professor Challenger actually did visit The Lost World in 1912, bringing dinosaurs back to the outside world. The result? Boredom, as the novelty of these strange creatures quickly fades. In the end the great dinosaurs, removed from their ecological niche in Venezuela, are relegated to sideshow status.

The book chronicles the adventures of Peter Balzoni, a young man on the cusp of adulthood. It's 1947, and Peter's photojournalist dad Anthony has been hired by National Geographic to record the efforts of Circus Lothar to return their dinosaurs to the Venezuelan plateau of El Grande. Also filming this extraordinary event are Willis O'Brien (who did the special effects on a box office flop called King Kong) and his protégé, Ray Harryhausen.

Bear sets a leisurely pace, taking his time getting his cast to El Grande, but, once they arrive, the book moves very fast. Peter and friends are trapped on the plateau and have to find their way out before they are devoured by the saurians and other creatures stalking them. The last third of the novel is non-stop action, as its stalwart heroes hurtle from one peril to the next, on their way towards a (mostly) happy ending.

The book pays homage to pulp fiction and the action/adventure genre in general, with particular reference to writers like Arthur Conan Doyle and Edgar Rice Burroughs. What seems like a straightforward adventure story conceals some deeper points, however.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Michael E. Stamm on April 16, 1998
Format: Hardcover
In what we are pleased to think of as our reality, such men as Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack (producers of the 1933 KING KONG), special effects geniuses Willis O'Brien and Ray Harryhausen, President Harry S Truman, and circus impresario John Ringling North, to name only a few, are-or, for most of them, at least were-very real. On the other hand, such men as George Edward Challenger are inhabitants of the vast realms of fiction-in this instance, Arthur Conan Doyle's 1912 classic, THE LOST WORLD.
Now Greg Bear-author of such major SF novels as MOVING MARS, EON, / (Slant), and many others, provides in his new novel DINOSAUR SUMMER a world wherein our reality and Doyle's speculative adventure collided head-on and merged, eighty-six years ago, with the return from Venezuela of the Challenger expedition-complete with real, live dinosaurs. And the result is quite a reading experience. (An added bonus: the novel is illustrated, both with fine line drawings and excellent full-color paintings reflecting a style of illustration of over fifty years ago, by Tony DiTerlizzi.)
In DINOSAUR SUMMER it's 1947, and dinosaurs are passé; a world in which they still lived lost interest in them after only a few decades (unlike our world's continuing fascination with the creatures of a vanished epoch). The last dinosaur circus still extant is out of business, its facilities sold to John Ringling North, its last remaining sad living exhibits destined for an uncertain fate...until the National Geographic steps in, offering to fund an expedition to return the dinosaurs to the massive prehistoric plateau, the tepui of El Grande, known to the nearby Indians as the sacred Kahu Hidi.
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