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Crescent Dawn (Dirk Pitt Adventure) Hardcover – November 16, 2010

3.9 out of 5 stars 432 customer reviews
Book 21 of 23 in the A Dirk Pitt Adventure Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In the bloated fourth Dirk Pitt novel from Cussler and son Dirk (after Arctic Drift), evildoers Ozden Aktan Celik and Ozden's sister, Maria, who are bent on Muslim domination of the Middle East, plot to blow up sacred Muslim sites like Jerusalem's Dome of the Rock and pin the blame on the CIA in particular and the West in general. Dirk, the director of the National Underwater and Marine Agency, and the Celiks are both searching for lost religious artifacts related to Jesus, artifacts whose rediscovery could embarrass certain powerful members of the British establishment. The authors keep the action moving with plenty of wreck diving, running sea battles, and ships laden with explosives. Fans of the indefatigable Pitt will enjoy watching their hero as he joins the battle on land, in the air, and at sea, but others might wish the Cusslers had picked less familiar terrorist targets. (Nov.) (c)
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From Booklist

Cussler’s umpteenth installment in the 40-year run of Dirk Pitt chronicles, now written with his son, the eponymous Dirk Cussler, has become as formulaic a franchise as the James Bond movies. In fact, Pitt is a Bond of the seas with similar exotic locales, scenery-chewing villains, over-the-top technology, and bodacious babes served with a bucket of testosterone—“shaken not stirred.” But with formula fiction, as with theme restaurants, it’s fun, and you always know what you’re getting. Cussler, the Cheesecake Factory of adventure writers, doesn’t disappoint in his latest, in which the bizarre cargo carried by a Roman galley in 327 CE and the mysterious explosion of a British battleship in 1916 have tremendous ramifications on the current political climate of the Middle East. Brother-and-sister baddies Ozden and Maria Celik aim to resurrect the Ottoman Empire, to which they lay claim as the allegedly last surviving royal heirs, by fomenting a fundamentalist uprising in Turkey and the surrounding Middle Eastern countries. But they’ll succeed only if they can keep Dirk Pitt and his NUMA (National Underwater and Marine Agency) team from discovering what was being transported in that ancient galley. High-Demand Back Story: A tried-and-true formula by a tried-and-true New York Times bestselling author will create its own stir. --Michael Gannon

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Product Details

  • Series: Dirk Pitt Adventure
  • Hardcover: 560 pages
  • Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons; 1st edition (November 16, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 039915714X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399157141
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 1.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (432 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #558,036 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I'm as guilty as anyone in keeping the Dirk Pitt series alive (I haven't read much of Mr. Cussler's other series), because I keep coming back, like a battered wife or an abused Black Lab loyally slinking back to its master. Maybe it's because I don't know any better. Or maybe it's because I'm hooked ("Clive, I can't quit you!"). But most likely it's because Sahara, Dragon, Cyclops, and even Raise the Titanic! were books that made a junior-high me love to read. And now that I write books of my own for a living, I guess I owe a debt to those writers like Mr. Cussler who made me want to do what they did. While adoring athletes my whole life never got me into the big leagues, my love and loyalty for writers as far ranging as Cussler and Camus and Margaret Wise Brown DID get me somewhere...So that's probably why I read this book.

All of that being said, Crescent Dawn is just awful. I mean, it is one of the worst books I've ever read. And that is the only reason I'm taking the time to write my first-ever book review here on Amazon. The book's plot, or the setup at least, isn't any worse or different than others have ever been. It takes an ancient occurrence, crosses it with something that could've happened a century ago, and then lets the mess those two eras started play out in the very near future of Dirk Pitt and his ever-growing gang. I actually looked forward to learning something about the Ottoman Empire, a subject I need to beef up on. And I thought that by tying such a divergent historical happenstance in with our world's current state of religious zealotry and terrorism, this book might be less far-fetched than most Cussler novels (let me set the record straight -- I have never minded anything far-fetched that he comes up with...
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Format: Hardcover
This book is what happens after a successful author spends years cashing in on a successful formula, runs out of ideas and (possibly abetted by the publisher) cannot even be bothered to do a decent job of editing.

As an example of bad editing, consider that one character is in her twenties but has a mother aged 94.

Other reviews will tell you plenty of things that are wrong with this book. I'll just add one more. With two main characters called Dirk, it would help to have something like a nickname to distinguish between references to the two characters.

Frankly, if the senior Cussler wants to continue the franchise with his son successfully established as an author, he needs to tell his publisher to back off and he needs to slow down. He should spend a year or two working on the next book with his son and teaching him the craft properly.
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Format: Paperback
I found this to be a fantastic book that drew me in from the turn of the first page...I think my wrist got as sore as my eyes as I quickly attempted to digest the entire story at one sitting....You will find that to be an impossible task. At over 500 pages for the twenty first book in this series, I also thought it was a great price, real "bang" for your buck. This is what Cussler constantly does though. The words, chapters and books (no matter the subject or "stars" in the lead roles), never got boring and each letter draws the mind deeper and deeper into the depths of a well written and fully developed character and plot. I can't wait to get my hands on his next book...Whether it's in the Oregon Files, Isaac Bell (which are both incredible series)....you and I, the reader are in for a treat!!!
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Format: Hardcover
Dirk Pitt returns after a two-year hiatus, "Arctic Drift" (11/08). Several years ago another favorite author of mine Craig Thomas wrote a novel titled "All the Grey Cats." In it he brought together many of his older characters. Clive Cussler does that in "Crescent Dawn." It just feels comfortable to have Dirk, Rudi and Al back again. Publishers Weekly called it "bloated" but when you look at the four Dirk Cussler novels, they're all about 550 pages in length. The Cusslers pull out all the old cliches, but they still work for me. You will enjoy this one too.
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Format: Hardcover
Whatever happened to the old Cussler brilliance and style? His greatness came from his ability to build on the first chapter pulling together all the parts with a simplicity of writing that made the reader hang on every word. This is a painful, 500+ page, endless book. It is too complicated with too much description, boring detailed, unnecessary conversations, too many characters (some with names the reader can't pronounce) and long drawn out overly detailed trite action that adds nothing to the story. Once I was half way through, I forced myself to finish the last 100 pages to get it over with. How foolish to have two main characters with the same first name! The ending was ridiculous - finding an ancient wood ship with a deck intact enough to walk on, etc is pretty farfetched. It was as if the writer didn't want the book to end so he kept writing and writing.......... Buried within this mess is a pretty good (and classic Clive plot) but it was completely spoiled by the clutter of words.
This seems to be the case with the last few years of Cussler's books - ever since he took on co-writers who must get paid by the word! Clive, if you have to use a co-writer to develop your idea - pick one with a similar writing style to your earlier books. Just because a someone can fill a page with adverbs and adjectives without making grammatical errors doesn't mean he writes a good book!
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