I just saw the news that Michael Crichton, author of Jurassic Park, The Andromeda Strain and many other novels, has unexpectedly passed away. I say "unexpectedly", but as he died of cancer, and his battle with that evil disease has been described as "private", I have to assume those close to him saw this coming for some time.
I'm not going to do any sort of career overview of Crichton's work, as I haven't read any of his books in a long time (including his recent, controversial books, such as State of Fear, though I'll admit I'd like to). I'm also not going to write one of those weasly, self-serving "Yes, his books were fun, but..." posts that use the death of a famous person as an excuse to tear them down. Because really, take his writing for what it was, or don't, but you can't argue that he was, more than anything, a fiercely intelligent guy. Plus, I'll be damned if Jurassic Park wasn't one hell of a gripping novel.
No, the main point of this post is to inform anyone who doesn't already know, and to express my genuine sadness that Michael Crichton has left us.