First edition cover
|Publisher||Alfred A. Knopf|
|Media type||Print (Hardcover)|
|LC Classification||PS3553.R48 B56 1972|
Binary is a techno-thriller novel written by Michael Crichton in 1972 under the pen-name John Lange. Michael Crichton also directed Pursuit, a 1972 film with a similar story. The story of both the book and the film revolve around a deadly nerve agent composed by combining two different chemicals.
Plot summary 
The villain is a middle-class small businessman named John Wright who decides to assassinate the President of the United States. He spends his life savings to carry out the theft of a U.S. Army shipment of the two precursor chemicals that form a deadly nerve gas codenamed VZ when combined.
The ingredients for the nerve gas VZ were intended to be detonated in downtown San Diego, corresponding with the arrival of the President to attend a Republican party conference taking place there. This nerve gas had no safe antidote, and it kills in two to three minutes after being inhaled or touched.
This nerve gas is contained inside two "Alacran" (a combustible plastic) tanks, and plastic explosives are wrapped around the containers, so that when after the nerve gas is released, the containers explode, rendering the scene of the crime untraceable.
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