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Monday, July 16, 2007

Black Wind by Clive and Dirk Cussler

Clive Cussler has always been one of favorite reads since a good friend recommended him (Thanks Mabel!). His stories focus on marine and underwater subjects and his characters are bigger than life. Dirk Pitt is his long-time hero, a tall, tanned, green-eyed stud that is quite adept at saving the day and the world. His sidekick, Al Giordino, is shorter, very muscular and a most trustworthy friend. Recently, in Cussler's book series, Pitt has discovered that he has two children, Dirk and Summer. They have joined Dirk, Al and his NUMA friends in these grand adventures.

In Black Wind, the gang discover that someone is attempting to bring a deadly, tweaked version of smallpox back from extinction in order to cause major political and economical change in the Far East and into the United States.

As in all of Cussler books, Black Wind is a fast-paced, hard hitting action adventure mixing the civilian NUMA gang, militaries and mercenaries moving to a climactic end. Pitt, Giordino and family are witty in the face of death, brave against tall odds and clever in tight situations.

Cussler, in most of his books, employs somewhat of a formula with his adventures. His intro usually takes place well in the past. The story starts with a rescue by Dirk Pitt and ends with Pitt and Giordino doing the impossible. The author usually puts himself into the book as a cameo of sorts. Even though I knew it was coming, it still surprised me. Some like this cameo, some don't. I think it's rather funny. Cussler (and Dirk Pitt) is also the owner of many classic automobiles. He will usually include one of this collection in his books, usually in a car chase. This is good fun.

Even though the author sticks to a formula for most of his novels, I still enjoy reading them as they are very informative of marine and diving subjects and deal with a global tragedy that can be prevented.

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