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Darwin's Radio | [Greg Bear]

Darwin's Radio

In a cave high in the Alps, a renegade anthropologist discovers a frozen Neanderthal couple with a Homo sapiens baby. Meanwhile, in southern Russia, the U.N. investigation of a mysterious mass grave is cut short. One of the investigators, molecular biologist Kaye Lang, returns home to the U.S. to learn that her theory on human retroviruses has been verified with the discovery of SHEVA, a virus that has slept in our DNA for millions of years and is now waking up.
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Publisher's Summary

Greg Bear's fiction ingeniously combines cutting-edge science and unforgettable characters. It has won multiple Hugo and Nebula Awards and choruses of critical acclaim. Now, with Darwin's Radio, Bear creates a nonstop thriller swirling with provocative ideas about the next step of human evolution.

In a cave high in the Alps, a renegade anthropologist discovers a frozen Neanderthal couple with a Homo sapiens baby. Meanwhile, in southern Russia, the U.N. investigation of a mysterious mass grave is cut short. One of the investigators, molecular biologist Kaye Lang, returns home to the U.S. to learn that her theory on human retroviruses has been verified with the discovery of SHEVA, a virus that has slept in our DNA for millions of years and is now waking up. How are these seemingly disparate events connected? Kaye Lang and her colleagues must race against a genetic time bomb to find out.

Darwin's Radio pulses with intelligent speculation, international adventure, and political intrigue as it explores timeless human themes. George Guidall's masterful performance heightens the excitement and keeps you enthralled until the final fascinating word.

©2000 Greg Bear; (P)2000 Recorded Books

What the Critics Say

  • Winner, 2000 Nebula Award - Best Novel

"Centered on well-developed, highly believable figures who are working scientists and full-fledged human beings, this fine novel is sure to please anyone who appreciates literate, state-of-the-art SF." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.7 (648 )
5 star
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3.7 (288 )
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Story
3.9 (285 )
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Kevin 04-15-14
    Kevin 04-15-14 Member Since 2010

    Husband, Dad, Principal, Adjunct prof, RC Deacon, radio co-host, story teller, NYer, walker, & occasional sipper of fine whisk(e)y,

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    "Started out real strong ..."

    ... and then it started to trip on itself. I which there was more time to develop the thesis. Interesting conceit, just happen to fizzle out at the end

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Josephine Kelley 04-14-14
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    "GREAT!!!"
    If you could sum up Darwin's Radio in three words, what would they be?

    Interesting premise of both past and future.


    What does George Guidall bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Love George Guidall. Just love his voice.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ted Lancaster, PA, United States 03-31-14
    Ted Lancaster, PA, United States 03-31-14 Member Since 2010

    Don't know what I want to be when I grow up. Trip's cool though. Use Audible to make gym-training sane... And rip my imagination.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Okay, Greg Bear's Got DNA Cred…"

    This book is worth listening to… much of it. George Guidall will help with all of it, but particularly the, um, "look-I-really-now-about-this-stuff" parts. See this is all about what's riding on the Watson and Crick double helix. So, be prepared to go eye-glazed as Mr. Bear's scientists show off their knowledge so we will suspend disbelief.

    When the lectures start… let your mind wander. Don't try to follow… and don't try to look for a lot of plot in these monologues. Instead, give the author credit for his research and push on. It's a cool story and very Crichton-ish. If you liked Michael Crichton and like Robin Cook, you'll enjoy this. I did.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kenneth Florissant, MO, United States 03-31-14
    Kenneth Florissant, MO, United States 03-31-14 Member Since 2013

    Tell us about yourself!

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    "Science meets Disaster Movie"
    What was most disappointing about Greg Bear’s story?

    The jump the shark moment for me was when the principle scientists decide for themselves what they believe is the nature of the biological reproductive "disaster" is, and decide the best course of action is to get married, have a mutant baby, and go hide somewhere and let the world take care of itself. It felt unrealistic to me that a person would behave this way.


    Any additional comments?

    In the end, I felt like I was watching a cheesy sci-fi disaster made for TV movie.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Simone 03-22-14
    Simone 03-22-14 Member Since 2006

    Join me on GoodReads too!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Science Fiction or Medical Thriller?"

    This was a great medical mystery book! A mix between Robin Cook and Michael Crichton; a real pager turner!

    My only complaint and the reason I could not go all the way and give it 5 stars was because it was just way too “jargony” and it lost me quite a few times along the way. There was a lot of dumbing-it-down-for-the-common-man and the author provided plenty of explanations of the medical terms and processes (so much so that it started to feel like he was showing off his research) but there was still WAY WAY too much technical detail for my liking. As soon as it started getting interesting, it got text-booky.

    I also felt like I lost huge chunks of the developing story; many times I found myself thinking “How did we get to this point?” or “when did that happen?” … did I miss something crucial?

    If you have a good attention span (better than mine anyway) you won’t have trouble – I on the other hand was confused for a lot of the time. Still, it was a great story and I can’t wait to dig into Book 2!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Neil LEXINGTON, KY, United States 12-14-13
    Neil LEXINGTON, KY, United States 12-14-13 Member Since 2013

    very short atte..

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    "for the sci fi type"
    Where does Darwin's Radio rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Ask me later.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Greg Bear is methodical, this is my third of his books, and I can say that he is reliable in his logic, and his writing. My favorite thing about all of his fiction is his ability to use very real human characteristics to bring realism to his plots. His people act like people.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    Yes, sometimes plodding. Maybe one or two goofy edits out of 17 hours of recording.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Not possible.


    Any additional comments?

    This is evolution in science fiction. The conflict stems from the human capacity for stubborn denial. If you are in actual denial about actual evolution stay away.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    majkia Niceville, FL USA 04-07-13
    majkia Niceville, FL USA 04-07-13 Member Since 2004

    majkia

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    "Change is hard and frightening"

    If the next evolutionary step happened, would we recognize it? Or would we think it a disease to destroy? When a part of our genetic code suddenly activates, and women's pregnancies start go go wrong, it's a race to find the cause and cure it. Or is it something else entirely?

    Exciting and thought provoking look at how we react to change and what we might do to keep the status quo rather than take a step into the unknown.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael J. Hardee 05-16-10 Member Since 2010
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    "Save Your Money"

    The author clearly lost his way about midway through this book. I don't know if he lost interest or decided to change direction but it was obvious and ruined the story. No more Greg Bear for me!

    2 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Luis Miami, Fl, United States 02-24-08
    Luis Miami, Fl, United States 02-24-08 Member Since 2006
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    "Liked the beginning"

    I liked the book until about the last 3rd after that it was not as believable or interesting. I did not like he end.

    4 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Steven prescott, AZ, United States 11-29-07
    Steven prescott, AZ, United States 11-29-07
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    "ok not great"

    A severe suspension of disbelief is needed for this story in general. Seems like a background fiction for the so called indigo children discussed on late nite talk radio. The ability of human DNA to modify itself and anticipate changes, world events, etc. is the main problem I have with the premise.

    3 of 7 people found this review helpful
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