Clive Cussler is as active an adventurer as his fictional heroes which adds a thrilling authenticity to his writing. He is an avid collector of classic cars and has 75 examples of hand-built coachwork. He lives in Colorado with his wife and 3 children.
Fresh from battling an evil diamond merchant in Shock Wave, Dirk Pitt, Cussler's perennial hero, and his sidekick, Al Giordino, are out to catch a Chinese shipping magnate who smuggles illegal Chinese immigrants into countries around the world to be worked as indentured slaves. On a lake near Seattle, Pitt stumbles across Qin Shang's heavily guarded compound. Pitt is the special projects director for the National Underwater & Marine Agency (NUMA, the nonprofit organization Cussler founded in real life to explore underwater sites). Searching the lake with a robotic observation device, Pitt finds heaps of mass-executed Chinese bodies. He then rescues a dozen still-living captives, including beautiful Immigration and Naturalization Services agent Julia Lee. It's revealed that Qin Shang's hefty campaign contributions have led the White House to block INS action against the wealthy manipulator. NUMA and INS bosses join to set up a secret task force spearheaded by Pitt, Girodino and Lee and supported by an ex-CIA mercenary naval vessel to launch clandestine sorties against Qin Shang's strongholds. They narrowly squash a plot that would cause ecological and economic destruction from New Orleans to eastern Texas, but Qin Shang remains untouched‘perhaps to surface in a sequel. Some readers will wince at the way Cussler heightens the drama by tapping into right-wing fears of a flood tide of nonwhite immigrants. Still, series fans will delight in the well-executed plot twists and revel in Cussler's portrayal of a shipwreck laden with tons of Chinese antiquities. 750,000 first printing; author tour. (Sept.)
We can't say much yet about Dirk Pitt's 14th outing‘even Cussler's publicist doesn't know plot details yet‘but we can bet that it will attract an enthusiastic readership.
YA‘Once again, the indestructible Dirk Pitt saves the country from possible economic collapse, while at the same time destroying an evil villain, finding a lost treasure, and saving a woman's life. The vividly described action takes readers from the ports of Hong Kong to picturesque Washington State and to the final showdown on the Mississippi River in Louisiana. As each problem seems to be solved, larger and more dangerous events occur, such as the seemingly unexplainable smuggling of thousands of illegal Chinese immigrants. Our hero finds himself trapped with these poor, abused refugees who are about to be murdered. Each turn and twist continues to build anxiety and heighten suspense. The eye-catching cover of this novel should entice readers to open its pages, where they will soon find themselves engrossed in this enthralling adventure.‘Anita Short, W. T. Woodson High School, Fairfax, VA