“ Author: Clive Cussler / Format: Paperback / Date of publication: 05 October 2006 / Genre: Crime & Thriller / Subcategory: Thriller / Suspense General / Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd / Title: Sacred Stone / ISBN 13: 9780141010328 / ISBN 10: 0141010328 „
* Prices may differ from that shown
When a scientist stumbles across the result of his lifetimes work in the remote landscape of Greenland he couldn't be happier. The hard work he has put in and funding he had received all seem worth it. Little does he know however that his discovery has a lot more to it than meets the eye. In fact it means he is caught in a massive fight to see who can get it from him first, either the man who financed his dig and wants to wipe out Islam or a terrorist group hell bent on unleashing a nuclear weapon in London. His life is at risk, along with the lives of millions more and it's up to Juan Cabrillo and the Corporation to try and save the millions of innocent lives.
This is the second of Cussler's novels I've read and the first time I've come across the Corporation. He seems to have three different series of books running in parallel with each other, all-revolving round the Oceans of the world. I'd enjoyed my first adventure into the world of Cussler's characters and so decided to take the plunge for the second time. The scope of the book was a little different, rather than dealing with Ocean studies, The Corporation are a team of former Special Forces operatives who undertake special missions for the CIA.
With this in mind it sets them apart from Cussler's other novels, which both focus on a government agency going by the name of NUMA. As this novel takes on a slightly different format it makes the characters and story behave a little differently. There is a definitive bad guy that Cabrillo and his team are trying to catch. The threat of a nuclear strike keeps you turning the pages and holds your attention very well. Unlike his other novels this one doesn't over do the technical side of sea exploration and for this reason is perhaps more accessible to new comers to Cussler's work.
There are a few flaws with the novel, which has lead to some hardcore fans of Cussler slating this piece of his work. For instance it is clear that his Geography isn't what it should be, with Edinburgh now to the west of Glasgow. There are a lot of small geographical anomilies that if you let them could spoil your enjoyment of the book. Likewise I found that his characters in this series aren't perhaps as easy to understand and get to know as in his other series but the more you read the book the more they grow on you, which means any future books with them in, the reader can pick up on them easier.
That said the mystery surrounding Cabrillo and his team actually added to the suspense of the story for the most part. The unpredicatbility that Cussler left surrounding them actually worked more in his favour of creating interesting characters. As always though his writing is confident and assured and the plot, despite it's few little niggles, flows along quite smoothly. I'm beginning to find that once you get past the first few chapters of his books, which can be hard going, they do settle down into an enjoyable read.
While the team tracking the device has a real air of mystery the bad guys are quite well defined in this story. They are designed for the reader to hate and with everyone that appears in the storyline thats exactly what I found myself doing. It's something I've noticed in both of the books I've read so far, that he can create bad guys you really want to see beaten. The combination fo two different enemies also seems to work very well and while in other books it may have stretched the book too far it seemed to work just right for the Sacred Stone.
Overall, while this wasnt the most acurate ofbooks I've read it still kept me entertained. If small, unimportant details will ruin your enjoyment of a book then I'd suggest this wasn't for you. If you can glaze them over and carry on reading without worrying about it then this book is definetly worth a try. In Cabrillo and his team, Cussler has created a group that may not have the overall appeal of his NUMA series, but certainly provides a wecome distraction from it.
Amazon Marketplace: £0.01
In the remote wastes of Greenland, a young scientist has unearthed an artifact hidden in a cave for a millennium: a 50,000 year-old meteorite known as the Sacred Stone - which he soon discovers possesses potentially catastrophic radioactive power. But the astounding find places him in the crosshairs of two opposing terrorist groups who seek the stone for themselves. One is a group of Muslim extremists who have stolen a nuclear device. With the power of the meteorite, they could vaporize any city in the west. The other group is led by a megalomaniacal industrialist who seeks to carry out the utter annihilation of Islam itself. Caught between two militant factions bent on wholesale slaughter, Juan Cabrillo and his ship of high-tech mercenaries known as the Corporation must fight to protect the scientist and the Sacred Stone - and prevent the outbreak of World War III.