cover image Clive Cussler: The Corsican Shadow

Clive Cussler: The Corsican Shadow

Dirk Cussler. Putnam, $29.95 (448p) ISBN 978-0-593-54417-4

The lukewarm 27th entry in Clive Cussler’s Dirk Pitt series (after The Devil’s Sea) is the second solo outing from the late author’s son, who is also named Dirk. The action picks up with Pitt and Al Giordino, his childhood best friend and National Underwater and Marine Agency colleague, sonar mapping the Normandy coastline in search of WWII shipwrecks. While diving to explore the hulk of an English Channel ferry, Pitt unearths a trove of uncut diamonds. After word of the discovery leaks, the diamonds are stolen, and the captain of the NUMA research vessel is killed. Pitt and Giordino pursue the thief, only to stumble on a terrorist plot by Henri Nassar, head of security for Yves Villard, a maritime drug smuggler bent on destroying water treatment facilities around the world in order to consolidate his control of freshwater sources. Meanwhile, Pitt’s twin children, Summer and Dirk Jr., chance upon a ship carrying out part of Nassar’s plan—and that’s hardly the least probable coincidence that drives the plot. Throughout, every new character Cussler introduces holds conveniently vital information for his heroes, and nearly every setback is overcome by the following paragraph. While the action can be exciting, and Pitt and Giordino’s banter is always amusing, there’s little else to recommend this. Only series diehards need apply. Agent: Peter Lampack, Peter Lampack Agency. (Nov.)