Michael Crichton & James Patterson Co-Authored Novel Setting Up To Be The Biggest Thriller of 2024


Two iconic authors. One massive, earth-shattering story. Eruption, due in bookstores on June 3, 2024 (published by Little, Brown and Company), is setting up to be the biggest thriller of 2024 . . . maybe even the decade.

Before he died in 2008, Michael Crichton was one of the biggest names in fiction. The author of iconic works such as The Terminal Man, Jurassic Park, State of Fear, and numerous other classics, his books have sold more than 250 million copies worldwide and have been translated into more than forty languages. His work has provided the basis for fifteen blockbuster films, and, among countless other accolades and accomplishments,  he created the hit television series ER.

James Patterson is widely considered the most popular storyteller alive today, having sold more than 425 million books. He is the genius behind the Alex Cross, Michael Bennett, Women’s Murder Club, Maximum Ride, Daniel X, NYPD Red, Witch & Wizard, and the  Private series, as well as numerous standalone novels, most of them #1 New York Times bestsellers. He’s co-authored books with Dolly Partob and even former president Bill Clinton.

Together, Crichton (through his estate) and Patterson are teaming up for a new thriller about a volcano that’s set to erupt in Hawaii and the secrets the government and military have hidden.

“Michael Crichton, creator of Jurassic Park and Westworld, had a passion project he’d been pursuing for years ahead of his untimely death. Knowing how special it was, his widow held back his notes and the partial manuscript till she found the right author to complete it,” reads the official book listing.  “The author she chose is the world’s most popular storyteller: James Patterson. Eruption brings the pace of Patterson to the concept of Crichton—the most anticipated mega-thriller in years.”

“Mega-thriller” is pretty spot on, not for nothing, as it’s perhaps the only way to adequately describe the hype around this book.

Crichton’s estate (led by his wife, Sherri Crichton) has sanctioned several of posthumous works since his passing. Pirate Latitudes (2009) was the first to be released and was reportedly found on one of his computers by his assistant. So, too, was Micro, another manuscript that was unearthed after he died, which came out in 2011. In 2016, HarperCollins announced that they would publish Dragon Teeth, which Crichton had written as far back as 1974. That book came out a year later, in 2017. And then, of course, there’s The Andromeda Evolution, a direct sequel to Crichton’s 1969 thriller The Andromeda Strain, which was written by author Daniel H. Wilson. Still, none of those works comes close to carrying the level of hype and excitement surrounding Eruption.




According to publicity materials provided by Hacchette, Sherri Crichton explained, “Unearthing this treasure inspired an intensive research project which involved scouring Michael’s multiple hard drives and papers and finding all relevant material. Though Michael was meticulous in his research and organization, cross-referencing and updating his files across numerous locations was no small feat. What this work unveiled, however, was remarkable: his story was brilliantly laid out. He had extensive volumes of scientific research, notes, and outlines-even video footage of himself on location conducting interviews with a volcanologist. The Black Zone, Michael’s working title, was based on a subject matter that captivated him for many years.

“Michael rarely spoke of his ideas or projects, not even to his family or closest friends; however, he frequently spoke of his volcano project, and when we were traveling through Italy, we made a special excursion to Pompeii so that he could further research the story he set in Hawaii. After Michael passed, I came across the unfinished manuscript in the archive, and I couldn’t believe how that story had come together in Michael’s inimitable way. How exciting! What Michael created needed someone of his brilliance to complete. For years, I considered possible collaborators until that perfect partner came into view, I would simply hold off and wait patiently for someone who could honor my husband’s work and continue his story. Then, I was introduced to James Patterson.”

“Not only is James Patterson the most successful author in the world working today,” Sherri Crichton says in a separate press release, “but like Michael, he is also a truly gifted storyteller whose books have formed a special connection with millions of readers around the world. I know that Michael would be very proud to have Jim complete the book he was writing at the time of his passing. I am honored to be joining hands with Jim on this incredible adventure.”

“I’ve read Michael Crichton’s thrillers avidly for decades and have always thought of him as one of the world’s best storytellers,” said Patterson in an official press release from Little, Brown and Company. “I’m honored that Sherri Crichton has entrusted this extraordinary story to me and that I will have the opportunity to bring Crichton’s brilliant ideas to life. I’m particularly excited to be working on this wonderfully prescient novel about Mauna Loa in light of current events. It’s as if Crichton could see into the future, and I’m eager to bring that vision to his readers and to mine.”

Hachette Book Group CEO Michael Pietsch said, “This is one of the most spectacular meetings of minds in literary history. The novel that Michael Crichton was unable to complete will be brought to life by the bestselling writer in modern publishing history, James Patterson, whose ability to create constantly compelling stories and indelible characters makes him the perfect partner.”

Little, Brown and Company acquired world and translation rights, excluding the UK. CrichtonSun was represented by Shane Salerno of The Story Factory, and Patterson was represented by Robert Barnett and Deneen Howell of Williams & Connolly. 

Readers anxious to get their hands on Eruption can now pre-order here or anywhere else books are sold.



Ryan Steck is the author of FIELDS OF FIRE, LETHAL RANGE, REDD CHRISTMAS, and the forthcoming Alex Hawke thriller TED BELL MONARCH. He is also a freelance editor, the founder and editor-in-chief of The Real Book Spy, and was named an “Online Influencer” by Amazon. Praised as “One of the hardest working and fairest reviewers out there” by New York Times bestselling author Lisa Scottoline, Steck has “quickly established himself as the authority on mysteries and thrillers” (Author A.J. Tata). His books have been endorsed by major #1 New York Times bestselling authors C.J. Box, Jack Carr, Mark Greaney, Nelson DeMille, James Rollins, Brad Meltzer, Kyle Mills, as well as Don Winslow, T.J. Newman, Brad Taylor, Gregg Hurwitz, and Steve Berry. Steck’s fourth Matthew Redd novel, OUT FOR BLOOD, will be released on June 4, 2024, and is currently available for pre-order anywhere books are sold. For more information, be sure to follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. To interact with other readers and talk about your favorite books and authors, join The Real Book Spy’s Discord server.


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