Thriller in Atlantis

Book review by Sebastian Lim

Title: Atlantis Found

Author: Clive Cussler

Publisher: Penguin Books

ISBN: 9780140287967

Year Published: 2001

Dirk Pitt, Clive Cussler’s larger-than-life hero, finds himself fighting with an army of elite killers seeking to destroy the world in another engrossing thriller.

As the story begins, artefacts from previously undiscovered civilisations, ancient but highly advanced, are popping up all over the world.

Pitt himself is on site in a Colorado mine when archaeologists come across strange carvings and mysterious inscriptions on a wall in the underground caves.

Then, an explosion traps the party below ground, and a band of black-suited terrorists arrive at the scene with guns blazing.

Though Pitt saves the day, the incident points toward a wider network of evil schemes in store.

Working for the National Underwater Marine Agency (NUMA), Pitt finally identifies the terrorists as members of the Fourth Empire, an organisation headed by the diabolical Wolf family. They are members of a secret clan of genetically-engineered people who worship the Nazi Third Reich.

Cussler kicks off at the start of this thriller with a comet wiping out nearly all human life 7,000 years ago, shifting the tectonic plates, bringing on the second Ice Age, and leading to the sinking of Atlantis in Antarctica.

Pitt, naturally, rediscovers the lost island while, in a second plotline, undercover Nazis reappear with hopes of establishing the Fourth Reich.

But it’s only after Pitt and his able sidekick, Al Giordino, battle old German U-boats, dodge surface-to-air missiles and narrowly escape death on a remote island off Australia that they finally find out the plans of the Fourth Empire.

The neo-Nazis aim to prevent the world from discovering the artefacts of this previously unknown seafaring culture because they tell of a catastrophic event that wiped out civilisation 9,000 years ago and also reveal when the next cataclysm will hit.

The Wolfs plan to accelerate the date through their own evil scheme to destroy Earth, meanwhile sheltering themselves and their thousands of followers on gigantic, disaster-proof ships.

Pitt knows that his mission to save the world from Wolf and his Fourth Empire is a big challenge, but one he’s filled many times before.

Cussler’s 15th Pitt adventure is a rampaging story of history, technology and heroism, written in Cussler’s style.

Al’s sudden romance and engagement at the end of the book is both a surprise and unbelievable.

In fact, Al’s “I can’t explain it” sums up one-and-only true love more succinctly than any sappy character ever could in a romance novel.

Overall, an entertaining read from Cussler. For muscle-flexing, belief-suspending fare, he has no equal.

Sebastian Lim is an experienced journalist and editor who now runs his own book review blog — The views expressed here are those of the writer and do not necessarily represent that of The Weekly-Echo.