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Pacific Vortex (Dirk Pitt Adventure) Mass Market Paperback – July 1, 1984
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For Raise the Titanic!: 'A great adventure thriller which spins from one dizzying climax to another ... Riveting ... simply super and very cleverly done' Publishers Weekly ** --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Publisher
Dirk Pitt's first, most terrific adventure! Dirk Pitt, death-defying adventurer and deep-sea expert, is out to the ultimate test as he plunges into the perilous waters of the Pacific Vortex -- a fog-shrouded sea zone where dozens of ships have vanished without a trace. The latest victim is the awesome superb Starbuck, America's deep-diving nuclear arsenal. Its loss poses an unthinkable threat to national defense. Pitt's job is to find it, salvage it, before the sea explodes. In a furious race against time, Pitt's mission swirls him into a battle with underwater assassins-and traps him in the arms of Summer Moran, the most stunningly exotic and dangerous toward disaster, Clive Cussler plummets his hero onto an ancient sunken island-the astonishing setting for the explosive climax of Pacific Vortex!
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Top Customer Reviews
Dirk was a major in the military and can fly planes. Currently he does special projects for an underwater marine agency. For thirty years, ships disappeared in an area called the Pacific Vortex, north of Hawaii. Recently a nuclear submarine named Starbuck disappeared there. Dirk sees a yellow canister floating in the ocean. He grabs it and takes it to Navy headquarters. It contains a message from the Starbuck. Dirk accompanies a Navy group to try to find the sub and figure out what happened. Someone tries to kill Dirk.
This was the author's first book, but he didn't publish it right away. After his sequels proved successful, he went back and published this at the urging of his friends. The author tells us that this is not as well developed as his later books. He wrote more than 20 Dirk Pitt books and more than 20 other fiction books. This book has a swashbuckling adventure feel. There is not a lot of thought to it. It's about bad guys, danger, bravery, some fighting, and escape - accessorized with a beautiful woman. It reminds me of movies. I prefer books over movies because I like the depth in books - characters, motivations, and plot development. This did not do enough for me to want to read more in the series. However I already purchased the sequel so I will be doing one more (The Mediterranean Caper). Dirk is a smart tough guy, but I prefer Jack Reacher (the Lee Child books). I think you can read these novels out of order based on other reviewers' comments, so if you want to try this author, I'd suggest reading one of the other books first.
In this book Dirk meets Summer. If you are reading this for back story on Summer, don't expect much. There are three brief scenes with Summer. First she tries to kill him, then she tries to help him. Apparently they love each other but that is not developed. There is no relationship development. Apparently she has a role in future books.
There was one line that had me chuckling. Dirk is flying a plane with a group of Navy men going on a dangerous mission, possibly-probably to die. Dirk wants to ease their nervousness so he tells his copilot friend to "get back in the main cabin with the others and act like a bored bus conductor."
I liked another scene. A woman appears to be seducing Dirk. She knees him in the crotch and plans to inject the contents of a syringe into him. But his instinctive reaction upon being kneed is to lash out with his fist which knocks her unconscious. Then he spends the next several minutes recuperating from his crotch hit, and then he sees the still-full-syringe in her hand. That was a fun scene.
Story length: 346 pages. Swearing language: mild, including religious swear words. Sexual content: No sex scenes or language, but Dirk thinks about his desires for women and sex. When he sees a desirable woman, his first thought is wondering how soon and how much effort will it take to have sex with her. Setting: current day Hawaii and the Pacific Ocean. Copyright: 1983. Genre: action adventure thriller.
For six months the US government has been trying to find the Starbuck, a submarine lost in the Hawaiian (Pacific) vortex. This is an area similar to the well-known Bermuda Triangle. The submarine was lost on its maiden trial and possesses the most advanced equipment, in terms of nuclear capabilities, that the US has developed so far. The last known communication from the nuclear submarine came from captain Dupree, establishing that they were lost without possibilities of recovering themselves and giving the coordinates of their location. While in his holidays in the coast of Hawaii, Dirk finds a communications capsule from the Starbuck addressed to Admiral Hunter in Pearl Harbor. Thus, he is directly involved in the search for the submarine and starts a dangerous journey in which he will face different enemies, conspiracies and uncertainty about who to trust. He also meets a mysterious woman, Summer, who will rock his world and complicate matters further.
Cussler has created a very entertaining series, with a character that has an arrogant and pedantic side, but whom also shows his pure emotions and is true to his friends and ideals. This makes the Special Project Director of the National Underwater and Marine Agency a very likable character. This is a book that a reader can breeze through in a few hours making it an enjoyable way to spend a weekend's afternoon. I will surely read the next book in this series hoping for a similar experience.
This is apparently the first book in the series but was not released first because Cussler knew it was sub-standard. Maybe I'll give another one of his books a chance, but it's hard to imagine that the others are significantly better.