Kathy Davie's Reviews > The Kingdom

The Kingdom by Clive Cussler
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's review
Sep 06, 11

bookshelves: action, archeology, history, suspense
Read in September, 2011

Third in the Fargo Adventure archeology series starring Sam and Remi Fargo, millionaires with a fascination for historical treasures and a gold code about their preservation.

The Story
Sam and Remi get caught up trying to find a missing Frank only to discover that King Charlie is using them to find an ancient artifact. An artifact for which his father, Lewis "Bully" King, spent his life looking. Now if the Fargos can only evade the Kings and the Chinese army as they explore caves, hike forests, and drop out of the Nepalese skies in their grand search for clues to the lost treasure of Lo Mustang.

The Characters
Sam Fargo is a Caltech-trained engineer while Remi Fargo has an anthropology and history major from Boston College. Both are action-oriented with a love of detecting archeological artifacts. Sam's invention of an argon laser scanner has made them incredibly wealthy and when their company was bought out, they used the money to set up the Fargo Foundation. The foundation's funding now comes from the treasures they find along the way.

Selma who used to managed the Library of Congress' Special Collections Divisions until lured away by the Fargos with the promise of unlimited funding and research time with her assistants, Pete Jeffcoat (archeology) and Wendy Corden (social sciences), handles the research for the Fargos on their adventures and with respect to their acquisitions.

Rube Haywood is their friend and a CIA operative perfectly willing to ferret out information for them just as they love to pass tips and evidence to him.

Frank Alton is a former San Diego policeman turned private detective. Married to Judy, the couple has dinner with the Fargos once a month. Now, it seems that Frank has been missing for 10 days while doing a job for King Charlie.

Charles "King Charlie" King made his fortune the really hard way. From the ground up and kicking anybody in the face or having them "disappear". Now he's after an ancient artifact purely to be able to destroy it for his own personal vengeance. Zhilan Hsu is both administrative assistant and consort. Russell and Marjorie are their under-the-thumb children.

Jack Karna is a British researcher who got caught up in the history of the ancient kingdom of Lo Mustang over 30 years ago. And has been writing its history ever since.

My Take
Think a married and intrepid Indiana Jones! Sam and Remi do it all…hiking, spelunking, climbing, inventing, shooting, kayaking, breaking and entering… Fortunately, it's all in a good cause as they sell the treasures they find or donate them to museums, libraries, and institutions. Amidst all the madcap adventuring, they look death in the face with a quip and a laugh making you look forward to the next installment in the Fargo Adventures!

In this story, we're on the trail of a precious treasure, the Theurang. I just love the irony when we discover the true nature of this treasure. For it is indeed a treasure beyond belief. In the meantime Sam and Remi run into a crooked Chinese general, a corrupt billionaire and his psychotic family, traitors, scholars, and new-found friends as we travel the world on the trail of this treasure's location. And get some questions answered about the real Shangri-La.

Such a treat to read about an intelligent, good-natured, inventive couple who care. As always, I do love a Cussler tale!

The Cover
The cover is too exciting with its 400+ years-in-the-past hot air balloon crashing into the side of a Mount Everest of a mountain in Nepal. It's not exactly accurate, as Cussler describes it as having three cages for balloons...

I'm guessing that the title, The Kingdom, refers to Lo Mustang, an old kingdom invaded back in the late 1400s, which sent its greatest treasure out of the land and into hiding.
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