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on 8 March 2017
Up to the usual high standard
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on 9 November 2003
I'm a great admirer of Clive Cussler's world - This time round it's the Fall of the ancient city of Troy told in Cussler's page-turning style.It's all here as usual..vicious villains,an enduring historical mystery,a world scale ecological plot,last minute rescues,plot twists and full of action,disaster and mystery.I enjoyed it immensely but I felt Cussler's written better!Having read Clive Cussler from "Atlantis Found" and then going through his back catalogue; "Trojan Odyssey" sit's nicely with any other Dirk Pitt adventure.
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on 29 October 2017
A really good buy for the money
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on 3 June 2005
Clive Cussler writes to a formula. There's no denying that (you'd be a fool to, if you've read any of his books). But, contrary to the usual result of this (outrage, apathy, etc.), it does seem to work for his Dirk Pitt series.
I'm a new devotee to the series, having started Shockwave 4 weeks ago (I've since read Flood Tide, Atlantis Found, Valhalla Rising, and now this one). They're addictive, for sure, and although I don't find it as hard to put them down now that they're becoming rather familiar, I still have an overwhelming desire to read his other novels! In fact, I've ordered the first books in the other series (Kurt Austin and the NUMA Files).
A well written (despite what some people say), gripping story. Yes, a bit far-fetched, but then so many things used to be (hello, Mr Bond...!) and we loved them for it! If you enjoy interesting, engrossing and above all fun action-adventure stories, then Clive Cussler is way up there! Actually, I'm finding it hard to find an author to read after I finish Cussler's books (I do that - focus on one author, read everything by him/her, then find another to read). No one else really seems to touch him in scale and scope of his novels, or the overall calibre.
All this despite being formulaic! I usually avoid novels that are considered to be treading the same path over and over, but Clive Cussler does write some exciting stories! Okay, "retreading the same stuff" is a little harsh, as these novels aren't all the same (Except "Flood Tide" and "Atlantis Found", I think, which you probably could have swapped pages and not noticed anything amiss... Minor things, really).
Anyway, give them a try. I hope this review made you think about picking up one of the Grand Master of Adventure's novels. Enjoy!
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on 4 May 2004
I have every Dirk Pitt book written by Clive having bought my first one in the early 80's. Some of the early softback covers still have shoe polish embedded on them from when I took them on army exercises in the UK and Europe. The theme of his books have appealed to me as I didn't want to have to think too much when reading just switch off, relax and enjoy the adventures that Clive had concocted, he was certainly one of the best in the world for doing that.
The last couple of books however have begun to dwell on Dirk's age starting to catch up with him. I want Dirk to be like Bond, never to age, always to be capable of dealing with any foes.
In Trojan Odyssey, Dirks' two kids appear in major roles having been introduced in the last book. They don't really do anything other than have to be rescued, Clive would be better doing to them what Scooby Doo and the gang did to Scrappy Doo i.e. get rid of the deadwood. Al Giordino hardly figures and Dirk seems to be getting ready to pick up his pension. There are a number of characters who, once introduced, seem to drift off with no further reference to them, something Clive would never have done in the past. He would have cleverly brought them back in when you were least expecting them.
At the end, Clive has Dirk do something that I thought he never would have (I'll not mention it, but fans will know what I am talking about) which seems to imply to me that Clive must be thinking of having no more Dirk adventures.
All in all, I was very disappointed with this novel. I read through the complete set of Dirk Pitt books about every two years and love to enter the world that Clive created for Dirk but after this book I was feeling let down. I certainly wouldn't recommend this book as a first one for someone not familiar with Dirk Pitt and would even go as far as to recommend to fans not to read it as it will disappoint.
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on 9 February 2004
One very important point to remember when reading Clive Cussler books, they are meant to be purely entertaining. Any rescue or feat of survival that appears possible in the real world is merely accidental, the escapes from certain death are to be expected and accepted.
Dirk's back, but there has been a major change to his life. He has discovered that he is the father of a pair of fraternal twins who are now 23 years old and he has had to make a complete readjustment of his life's priorities. His children, named Summer and Dirk, are every bit as intrepid as their father and have both been given jobs working with him at the National Underwater and Marine Agency (NUMA). The whole Pitt family are all involved in the start of adventure, with Dirk and Summer trying to work out the origin of a massive slick of brown crud that is killing the sea-life in the Caribbean. Like so many other Dirk Pitt adventures it appears that a mysterious multi-billionaire megalomaniac is behind the environmental disaster in the making, with even grander and earth shattering plans in store. Again, like other Dirk Pitt stories, the evil mastermind is willing to use deadly force to keep his nefarious activities a secret. It's up to Dirk and his sidekick Al Giordino to save the day – and the world.
Unfortunately, this Dirk Pitt thriller isn't the fast-paced thrill ride of earlier books. You get the distinct impression that Dirk Pitt is getting tired and is preparing to call it a day. The usual snap is missing and the heights of excitement just aren't reached, probably reflective of Dirk's malaise. Sure, the corny dialogue, improbable escapes and unbelievable rescues are there, but the edge feels as though it's missing. Could it be that the young Pitts will soon be taking over from their old man?
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on 23 August 2005
"but not hang it by the neck until dead."
The usual sillyness comes with the genre, but when the villain's device breaks fundamental laws of physics and NUMA don't even notice, that's going too far. Couldn't the editor have got someone who knows the first thing about the subject to look over it?
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on 25 May 2008
This is Cussler's 17th book featuring his character Dirk Pitt, so he obviously knows his readership and delivers. The publisher is being both greedy and lazy to release books like this. Nowadays, publishing editors hardly ever edit, they acquire properties (writers) and promote products (books) rather than simply making sure the writer gets things right. Cussler presumably gives his fans what they want, more of the same, but that's even more reason to ensure his work is adequately edited; in this case, it decidedly is not.

Following closely on the heels of Valhalla Rising in which Pitt learned he had grown-up twins, a son and a daughter - Dirk (a marine engineer) and Summer (a marine biologist), this book relates how these two help their father discover the amazing secret behind `the crud' that's killing sea-life off Nicaragua.

In common with Cussler's other most recent outings, the first chapter describes a historic event which has some bearing on the book's near-future marine archaeology. This time we go to 1190 BC and witness the `true' story of the Trojan horse and the sacking of Troy.

Coincidences abound. Summer discovers an ancient artefact at about the same time as the worst storm in history threatens a new floating hotel. Pitt and his NUMA pal Al Giordino fly in to rescue the hotel just after its owner, Mr Specter, abandons everyone. The very secretive Specter seems to be involved in several shady goings-on, yet nobody can pin anything on him; when has that stopped law-enforcement? As a villain, he's poorly drawn - but perhaps that's due to the melodramatic revelation of his true identity at the end of the book.

Cussler's readers have come to expect plenty of accurate expertise on all sorts of subjects in exotic places and this is what you get. The facts about the Celts are very interesting - and coincidentally relate to Summer's artefact and in turn are linked to Specter.

The characterisation is light and some of the metaphors are strained, to say the least: the tumult that was headed directly for the hotel as if it was an enraged Tyrannosaurus rex with a vendetta or the voice was soft and punctuated, like a mild summer shower on a metal roof... Indeed, the writing really requires better editing.

Al Giordino was `a bachelor who had yet to marry' - are there any other kind? - and came across as a tough but faithful friend to have in a tight spot. And Pitt finds himself in his fair share of tight spots.

His characters don't talk like real people but rather like TV characters offering exposition to viewers with low attention-spans. There's a tendency to overwriting, too - the hotel `driven unmercifully by sea turned cruel beyond any that had been recorded by man'. A nice reference to Monsarratt's Cruel Sea, maybe, but a bit over the top. There's a reference to the Pirates of the Caribbean - the Disney rides, not the film - which my amanuensis assures me apparently echoes a similar reference in his earlier book Iceberg. And nobody ever seems to get out of a car or a room - they exit.

The villain's plot is quite fascinating and original, though it's doubtful that so many surveillance agencies would be suspicious yet not find out what was happening. Still, it's only an adventure story. And that's what Cussler delivers. His fans will doubtless enjoy it, especially the references to earlier tales, the strained humour and the re-appearance of a character called Clive Cussler.

Cussler really should know the difference between adverse and averse (p13) when writing `... hardly adverse to murder and mayhem.' There's more than one instance where he exhibits a tyro's lack of grammar: `When he awoke in the morning, Loren had already left...' But this means when Pitt woke, not Loren, even if it doesn't read that way. Over-use of a description kills it - such as a `mask of wrath' on pages 254 and 383 [Page numbers relate to the hardback edition].
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on 24 October 2004
The story starts out with the retelling of Homer's famous tale, on a different continent, and ends up with Pitt's taking over the reins at Numa. And who better to lead this nefarious organization of adventurers?
Though far from his best efforts(my favorite is Inca Gold), there is enough action, and adventure for any adventure thriller fan. Dirk, and Al both start feeling the effects of old age, creeping up on them, but so do we all!
Clive Cussler is turning over the reigns of this franchise to his son Dirk, in Black Wind,in another collaboration effort, this time with his son Dirk Clive, whom he named his best known character after. I'm led to believe though, that it will be Dirk Jr., and his lovely sister Summer that will be gracing the pages of further adventures, and not their aging father, who will be turned to for advice from time to time to continue the saga.
And why not, so long as the action, and adventure continues, and keeps to Clive Cussler's standard for a great adventure novel, I truly doubt the readers will mind Clive's turning the reins over to the next generation of writers.
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VINE VOICEon 30 September 2011
Firstly, open your skull and remove your brain. Cussler's adventures on the high seas have slowly ventured in to unrealistic waters over the years and Trojan Odyssey continues the trend. Readers prepared to suspend their disbelief will be propelled through a tale of Dirk Pitt's daring yarn spun out in Nicaragua as he fights the forces of Spectre - the uber-villain created for this novel.

Odyssey opens with a magnificent and thrilling action sequence, in which Pitt's children are the placed in to danger. This opener showcases great narrative skills from Cussler and the rest of the story doesn't live up to it, although it never stops trying. The cast is more diverse too, creating a wider opportunity for adventures, although there are some incredible coincidences to be pushed aside. It's standard adventure territory for the most and is somewhat predictable, although it maintains its sense of fun throughout.
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