Michael Crichton is to science as John Grisham is to law — both men made each topic palatable, interesting, dramatic and hard to put down. I was not as rabid a fan of Crichton as I was of Madeline L’Engle, but I intensely admired his work. I didn’t read his more well-known books, but the ones I’ve read (Timeline, Congo, Eaters of the Dead and Sphere) really fired up my imagination. (LAT obit)
It should also be noted that Crichton in 1993 predicted the demise of the mainstream media.