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Pacific Vortex!: A Novel Mass Market Paperback – February 23, 2010

4.2 out of 5 stars 185 customer reviews
Book 1 of 23 in the A Dirk Pitt Adventure Series

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Editorial Reviews


“Dirk Pitt [is] oceanography’s answer to Indiana Jones.”—The Associated Press

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! --This text refers to an alternate Mass Market Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam; Reissue edition (February 23, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553593455
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553593457
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.7 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (185 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #47,879 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Sebastian Fernandez VINE VOICE on March 22, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I have never been a big fan of military thrillers. The only author I read regularly in this genre is Nelson DeMille and I enjoy him a lot, so I decided to give Clive Cussler a try. I am happy to say I was not disappointed! Even though "Pacific Vortex" was not the first published book in the Dirk Pitt adventures series, it was the first Cussler wrote, so logically, this is the novel I picked to start my journey. I found an interesting character that lives at the edge and is passionate about his work. Also in some aspects he is similar to James Bond, women mainly, and the mix is sufficient to keep the reader thoroughly entertained.
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.
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By Nawfal on February 11, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Dirk Pitt is the James Bond meets John Wayne character that every guy would love to be. Pitt's a "man's man." He smokes, but he still scuba dives with the best of them. He's no pretty boy, well-mannered and cute, but he gets plenty of women. He's no fame-seeking show off, but he always saves the day. Playboy, Maxim, and GQ only WISH they could have such a chap to plaster on their covers!
Pacific Vortex! is a quick read since its a rather short book, but that's not a bad thing. A lot of popular novels contain the author's preaching to the reader or cramming pages upon pages full of verbose meandering. Not so with Cussler. Pacific Vortex is the perfect book for anyone who wants to have fun reading. Its difficult to make a novel fun (is Dan Brown a "fun" read? is Sydney Sheldon a "fun" read? are the classics "fun" reads?), but Cussler writes really fun books. I enjoyed Pacific Vortex because it moves quick - Cussler doesn't bore me by telling me every single detail about every room characters are in, what they are wearing, what they are thinking, what they ate for breakfast etc. There's a mysterious "vortex" in the Pacific? A capsule from a missing ship has been awash? Add Dirk Pitt and the story comes to life and there's not much of a pause. The ending is a bit silly (as is the villian), but good triumphs over evil, there were sexy women (but no filthy sex-scenes) involved in the storyline, and there were guns! I'm a happy reader!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
At the book's beginning, Cussler points out that this was actually the first Pitt adventure, but that he was afraid of having it published. I see no reason why he should have been. Vortex is one of his finest works and is perfect for someone just getting interested in the Dirk Pitt (registered trademark) series. This book is far shorter than most of Cussler's other fare, which actaully makes it that much more enjoyabe. Cussler has a tendency to pile on the descriptions and histories of whatever the subject may be. Further, he tends also to, right as the action is getting good and tense, detour his readers onto another plot line (equally as intriging) for the next 100-200 pages before turning back to the original story line for the book's remainder. In Vortex, there is no over- describing and the sub plots (if any) take up little time, leaving the majority of the 270 pages for non stop action sequences. Granted, once a reader becomes a fan of a certain series or character, demands of the audience almost require the author to make deep indulgences in the characters and story. For Vortex, Cussler does not do this, making the action quick and believable, without getting the reader too bogged down in sometimes unnecessary details. For anyone interested in Cussler who has never read his works before, I suggest starting here, and moving on to the later, grander escapades of Dirk Pitt (registered trademark) if this one tickles your fancy.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
"Pacific Vortex", for those of you who don't know, was actually the first book written by Cussler for the Dirk Pitt series. He was afraid to publish it, but friends and fans persuaded him to eventually share it with the rest of the world. I'm glad he did. Even though some of the dialogue was a little cheezy at times, the storyline was very intriguing. To hear Pitt tell the "Bond girl" in this book that he loves her was surprising. After reading six of Cussler's books, I was under the assumption that Pitt used women mainly for sex. It was interesting to finally see Pitt actually care for a woman and express his feelings. Normally, he's a cool cat who rarely shares his deep thoughts with anyone. It was refreshing to see this sensitive side of him, even if it was for a brief time. Overall, the book was entertaining. The whole idea of there being habitable submarine caves is an interesting premise. I wish the book was longer. "Pacific Vortex" still does not top "Cyclops" as Cussler's best novel because of the former's weak dialogue. However, it was still a good read and I know I'll read it again. I'm glad Cussler finally published this book. Clive, if you have any more unpublished stories, please reconsider. They are probably just as enjoyable as "Pacific Vortex".
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