The only problem with reading the first of a series of thriller novels, KNOWING that you're reading the first of a series of thriller novels is that y...moreThe only problem with reading the first of a series of thriller novels, KNOWING that you're reading the first of a series of thriller novels is that you know that the MC is going to survive anything that's thrown at him. Kinda takes the impact out of the scenes. HOWEVER, that's countered by Baldacci's willingness to throw everyone else under the bus and kill off any of his other characters. You know that Stone's going to survive, but that's all that's granted. I also liked that the media and politics were portrayed in such a way that I could agree with it, without it getting preachy.(less)
Just finished this and I have to say... it's no NUMA file. The drama in the book wasn't suspenseful, the emotion just wasn't there. There are too many...moreJust finished this and I have to say... it's no NUMA file. The drama in the book wasn't suspenseful, the emotion just wasn't there. There are too many characters to keep track of, and, again, there are too many to have any sort of emotional attachment start to form. The end of the story just seemed to drag on and on, making me wonder if it would ever end, and wishing it had hours earlier. Hardly suspense-candy, hardly worth Cussler's name on the book. If this is what the Oregon books are going to be like, then I don't think I'm going to be pursuing them.(less)
Remember when Bond movies were about the toys, eye candy, and big explosions? They were pointless mindcandy, but sometimes, that's really all you *wan...moreRemember when Bond movies were about the toys, eye candy, and big explosions? They were pointless mindcandy, but sometimes, that's really all you *want* out of a movie - something to distract and entertain. Sure, if one cared to think about Bond in a realistic-world-view sense, he's a misogynistic, cold blooded killer, but in those "it's all about the toys" movies, that's not really his persona. It's all a matter of tone and reference.
That's what Cussler books USED to be - a kind of Americanized James Bond story. Full of fun explosions, the comradere of two lifelong friends, good triumphing over bad, cool nautical toys, exploration, and Pitt getting the girl. In a nutshell: Mindcandy.
This series is NOT that kind of book. The bad guy seems to be more topical to world troubles, and the tone seems to be more realistic. With minute changes in tone, a very different book is being presented - still a suspense/thriller, but not with the carefree innocence that Pitt seemed to have. In a Pitt book, one of the good guys would never die. In this series? They can and do.
But how does it do *as* a regular suspense/thriller novel? Middling. Females are still second class citizens, and while some are capable of shooting things up, they're still not *as* good, and are mostly there for drama magnets. The Bad Guys all seem to be Whoever America's Currently Not Happy With propaganda. And the conversations are either predictable or seem stolen from an RPG. Basically, there's nothing NEW in this territory that's being covered.
Remember when reading a Cussler book used to be fun? I do. And, I miss it.(less)