Mount Dragon by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

Mount Dragon by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child

Sep 08, 2023


"Mount Dragon" by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child is a gripping techno-thriller that plunges readers into the thrilling and treacherous world of genetic engineering. Published in 1996, this collaborative novel explores the intersection of cutting-edge science, corporate ambition, and the moral dilemmas that arise when scientific discoveries push the boundaries of ethics. In this review, we will delve into the strengths of "Mount Dragon," including its well-developed characters, riveting plot, and thought-provoking examination of the consequences of scientific progress.

Complex Characters:

One of the notable strengths of "Mount Dragon" lies in its well-developed and multi-dimensional characters. The story is anchored by the perspectives of two protagonists, Dr. Guy Carson and Dr. Susana Cabeza de Vaca, who are researchers at the high-tech Mount Dragon facility. Both characters are experts in their respective fields, and their contrasting personalities and motivations add depth to the narrative.

Dr. Guy Carson, a molecular biologist, is driven by his quest for scientific discovery. His relentless pursuit of knowledge leads him to Mount Dragon, where he is tasked with conducting groundbreaking research on the enigmatic project X-23. Carson's transformation from a focused scientist to a man entangled in a web of ethical dilemmas and corporate intrigue is central to the story.

Dr. Susana Cabeza de Vaca, a brilliant microbiologist, is equally compelling. Her strong-willed and no-nonsense personality contrasts with Carson's more reserved demeanor. Cabeza de Vaca's determination to uncover the secrets of Mount Dragon, coupled with her personal motivations, make her a character of great depth.

The supporting cast, including the enigmatic Dr. Brent Scopes and the ruthless entrepreneur Charles Levine, adds complexity to the narrative. Each character brings their own unique perspectives and motivations, contributing to the intricate web of relationships and secrets that drive the plot forward.

Intriguing and Thought-Provoking Plot:

"Mount Dragon" unfolds as a high-stakes thriller with elements of scientific intrigue. The novel's premise revolves around the top-secret research facility, Mount Dragon, where cutting-edge genetic engineering is being carried out on a project known as X-23. The facility's aura of secrecy, advanced technology, and ominous undercurrents create a sense of unease that permeates the story.

The authors meticulously craft a suspenseful and thought-provoking plot that revolves around the moral dilemmas of genetic engineering. As Dr. Carson and Dr. Cabeza de Vaca delve deeper into the mysteries of Mount Dragon, they uncover not only the potential for scientific breakthroughs but also the ethical implications and unintended consequences of their work.

The narrative's pacing is well-managed, with each chapter unveiling new revelations and challenges. As the characters face unexpected obstacles and ethical quandaries, the tension escalates, driving the narrative forward. The intricate plot keeps readers engaged, eager to uncover the next layer of the mystery.

Exploration of Ethical Dilemmas:

"Mount Dragon" raises significant ethical questions about genetic engineering and scientific progress. The novel delves into the consequences of pushing the boundaries of scientific knowledge and the potential risks involved in manipulating the fundamental building blocks of life. The moral dilemmas faced by the characters prompt readers to consider the ethical implications of their choices and the responsibility of scientists in ensuring the ethical use of their discoveries.

The story also shines a spotlight on the ethical challenges of corporate interests in scientific research. The pursuit of financial gain, secrecy, and the potential for unscrupulous behavior create a tension that lies at the heart of the narrative. The clash between scientific ideals and corporate ambitions adds depth to the exploration of ethical dilemmas.

Examination of Scientific Progress:

"Mount Dragon" serves as a cautionary tale about the rapid pace of scientific advancement and the need for responsible and ethical research. The novel prompts readers to consider the potential consequences of scientific breakthroughs, particularly in fields like genetic engineering. The ethical and moral dilemmas faced by the characters underscore the importance of responsible research and the potential consequences of unchecked scientific progress.


"Mount Dragon" by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child is a compelling techno-thriller that combines well-developed characters, an intriguing and thought-prooking plot, and an examination of the ethical and moral dilemmas inherent in scientific progress. The novel's exploration of genetic engineering, corporate interests, and the consequences of pushing the boundaries of scientific knowledge make it a thought-provoking and engaging read.

For readers who enjoy thrillers that seamlessly blend science, ethics, and suspense, "Mount Dragon" is a must-read. It showcases the collaborative storytelling prowess of Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child, offering a narrative that keeps readers enthralled and prompts them to contemplate the responsibilities of scientific discovery. The ethical dilemmas faced by the characters and the tension between scientific ideals and corporate interests make "Mount Dragon" a timely and compelling exploration of the consequences of scientific progress.