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Zero Hour (Numa Files) Hardcover – May 28, 2013

Book 11 of 12 in the NUMA Files Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

This latest NUMA adventure from Cussler and Brown features the heroic members of the National Underwater and Marine Agency—Kurt Austin, Dirk Pitt, Joe Zavala, et al.—battling yet another madman who hopes to conquer the world. But crazed scientist Maxmillian Thero's weapon is unique: it uses of zero-point energy to create machines capable of causing continent-shattering earthquakes. Narrator Scott Brick is skilled at creating accents—a much-needed talent considering that Thero has marked both Australia and Russia as his main targets. Brick treats the book's Aussies, male and female, to a credible, near musical twang. His Russian accents are solid, especially the voice he uses for an oddly likeable Moscow assassin. When it comes to most of the NUMA world-savers, Austin and Pitt included, Brick uses an all-purpose, broadcast-quality stalwart tone, though the down-to-earth Zavala's comments have an added touch of Brooklyn sarcasm. It's the voice of Thero that presents the biggest challenge. The authors describe it as being the result of vocal chords damaged in an intense fire that nearly killed the man and drove him mad. Brick's croak is so effectively garbled and strained one hopes he has his own award-winning voice properly insured against misuse. A Putnam hardcover. (May) --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

From Booklist

Even if Kurt Austin, of the National Underwater and Marine Agency (NUMA), isn’t looking for trouble, it somehow has a way of finding him. Attending a conference in Sydney, Austin just happens to be nearby when a powerboat crashes into the Sydney Opera House. Kurt pulls an injured man out of the wreckage; the man dies but not before muttering a cryptic message (“The heart . . . of Tartarus”) that Austin immediately recognizes as a reference to “the deepest prison of the underworld.” Then, after Austin notices that the dead man has symptoms of the bends, he starts looking for a mystery deep under the water, but he doesn’t expect to find a Bondian megalomaniac who has harnessed the massively destructive power of zero-point energy and is threatening to wreak havoc upon the planet. Unless, of course, Austin and his NUMA team can stop him. The NUMA books are sort of midrange Cussler, not as well crafted as his Isaac Bell series but more exciting than the Oregon Files. Fans of the previous NUMA adventures will find much to enjoy here. --David Pitt
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Product Details

  • Series: Numa Files (Book 11)
  • Hardcover: 390 pages
  • Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons; First Edition edition (May 28, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 039916250X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399162503
  • Product Dimensions: 9.4 x 6.3 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (740 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #273,335 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

I always look forward to his next book coming out.
George Carlin
I could not put the book down once I started reading it.
Theresa Kreeger
Good action throughout with a fast moving story line.
R. Fain

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

37 of 39 people found the following review helpful By Shirley Cody on May 30, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Cussler and Brown pack Zero Hour with action, humor, a psycho with a split personality trying to get revenge by ending the world with zero point energy. All our favorite characters are in this one: Kurt Austin, Dirk Pitt, James Sandecker, Joe Zavala, Hiram Yaeger, Paul and Gamay Trout. As always, Kurt gets in trouble but manages to get out of it with his off the cuff schemes and, with Joe, saves the day. Hiram has now get more computer genius with virtual reality and fact finding, even, again, logging onto supposedly secure and off limits sites. Thero, the villain, has a split personality of both father and son (who was killed) with the father wanting revenge and the son wanting to stop him. Real action and a plausible scenario. This is the third book that Cussler writes with Graham Brown and all three are excellent. I am a fan of Graham Brown's sole writing also, having read his Black Rain and Black Sun. The only thing I missed was Cussler himself popping up as a character in the book!
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35 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Marcus A. Lewis VINE VOICE on May 30, 2013
Format: Hardcover
"Zero Hour" opens with a Prologue that would do Mary Shelley proud. This novel has all the elements of fun fiction: a luchador for a villain, a beautiful physicist, the world on the brink of possible destruction, and Kurt Austin. It's a volatile mix. This is the third time Clive Cussler and Graham Brown have collaborated on a novel from the NUMA Files, and they keep getting better at it. The story is equal parts dialogue and action. I agree with the first two reviewers, it's a great summer read.
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Wulfstan TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 29, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Clive Cussler writes some fun adventure novels. True, hardly great literature, but they are almost always good page turners, a great book to take to the beach, etc. Aided here by the hands of his partner Graham Brown, this duo again turns out some great summer reading fare.

This is part of the NUMA (National Underwater and Marine Agency ) Series, with our hero being Kurt Austin. However, a few other Cussler favorites make cameos including the famous Dirk Pitt. Long time Cussler fans will enjoy these drop-ins.

We start with a boat crash and helicopter battle right outside the Sydney Opera House, and the action rarely leaves off. There's a mystery to solve, the world to be saved, and Kurt is just the man to do it.

Fun & readable.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By William D. Curnutt TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on June 3, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Cussler and Brown give us another good adventure in the life of Kurt Austin and his friends. Kurt has gone on vacation to Australia. He is at a conference, but frankly he is bored. I understand that feeling, often times conferences don't always live up to the liveliness that they offer in their advertising. Kurt has decided to take the afternoon off and is leaving the auditorium when he runs into a beautiful young woman, yeah how coincidental. They have a brief exchange but Ms. Anderson says that she is going back into the conference.

But before that can happen a small motorized boat is heading at a very high rate of speed towards the shore where Kurt is standing. The boat is being chased by a helicopter and the men in the copter are shooting at the boat. The boat crashes on to shore and throws one of it's occupants out, the other is caught in the wreckage. Kurt rushes in to try and save the driver, but he is stuck and before Kurt can do anything another round of bullets from the helicopter end the drivers life.

Kurt turns his attention to the passenger to see Ms. Anderson running through the melee to drag the man to safety. Kurt does his thing in finding a way to dispatch the helicopter, unfortunately he sends it crashing into the Sidney Opera House (this will make some people unhappy). Now the authorities show up and the real adventure starts.

It turns out the Aussies were tracking these men and hoping to meet with them to get the low down on a "mad scientist" who has developed a machine called the Zero Energy Machine that can harness great stores of energy from the earths core and deliver it anywhere in the world he wants to bring about major destruction, such as earthquakes.

Well, for Austin the vacation is over.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Stik50 on May 31, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
bought this book for my husband. He reads all of Cussler's books. Last night he said this was one of his favorites. A very good book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By FMCflyer on June 7, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Cussler and Brown did a great job of story telling in this book. The tech is plausible and the back drop for the chase scene is clearly described and they paint great visuals with the text of the book.
I was glad to see that the ocean references were left to a minimum. Recent Cussler stories like the latest Dirk Pitt novel have seemed to use bits and pieces of his previous novels. You can only have so many submersible accidents until they all start to look and sound the same.
Thoroughly enjoyed the book and I look forward to his next offering.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Lynn Reener on August 16, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Brown was a great replacement for Paul Kemprecos. His stand alone books were very good and there was a seamless transfer from one author to the other. The series just moves along with its wonderful characters and great story lines. Love this series!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Bookreporter on June 10, 2013
Format: Hardcover
The release of ZERO HOUR celebrates Clive Cussler's 40th year of exciting storytelling, and his plotting skills remain at the top of high-stakes adventure writing. The premise for his newest thriller (co-written with Graham Brown) is a machine that has harnessed and controlled a state of energy contained in all of nature and is unlimited in scope. Kurt Austin and his NUMA Special Assignments Team find themselves in a race against time with the brutal scientist who plans to unleash zero point energy with the destruction of a continent in mind.

Kurt Austin, as Director of Special Projects for the National Underwater and Marine Agency, attends a conference in Sydney, Australia, his expertise in underwater salvage a plus. Bored with dry speeches, Austin steps outside the Opera House, his excuse being a phone call from the NUMA office. There, he meets Hayley Anderson, an attendee who has broken a high-heeled shoe and looks for a solution. While making small talk, the two witness a bizarre happening across the Sydney Harbor. A powerboat cuts in front of a ferry, nearly causing an accident, and is pursued by a Eurocopter with armed gunmen shooting at the people inside. The out-of-control boat launches a run directly at the Opera House, where Austin and Hayley watch on the steps. The powerboat goes airborne and crashes on its side, wrecked and leaking fuel.

Austin has called for emergency help but wastes no time in rushing the damaged craft to aid its victims. He pulls the passenger from the wreck and attempts to free the pilot, but cannot succeed before the helicopter sniper returns with a deadly kill shot. Before the sniper can fly back to finish off the passenger, Hayley cradles the man in her arms. Her effort is in vain because the passenger is dying.
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