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In appreciation of Michael Crichton

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"Michael Crichton may puzzle or annoy in his occasional lapses in taste, but he cannot be dismissed. Serious questions and important issues often lurk beneath what can seem to be a slick commercial surface," wrote Lorraine Hirsch in a 1981 Monitor interview with author, film producer, film director, medical doctor, and television producer Michael Crichton in 1981. The words continued to ring true throughout the rest of Crichton's career.

Crichton's death today at the age of 66 leaves millions of fans in mourning. Crichton is known worldwide for his science fiction and techno-thriller novels, films, and television programs. His books – which include "The Andromeda Strain," (1969) "Congo," (1980) and "Jurassic Park" (1990) – have sold over 150 million copies worldwide.

Crichton was born in Chicago in 1942. He attended Harvard as an undergraduate and also graduated from Harvard Medical School in 1969. It was while he was in medical school that he began writing novels, publishing two under assumed names.

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