Review

The Navigator: A Kurt Austin Adventure

by Clive Cussler

The
Phoenician Empire was at its peak in 850 B.C. Around that time, a
dark green statue, nearly six feet in height, was intricately
carved. It was known as the Navigator, and it would have an
incredible history. It would be stolen several times in its long
life and hold many mysteries in its carvings. Originally taken from
a Scythian vessel on the high seas around 900 B.C. (only to be
found many years later), it would be featured in the Baghdad
Museum, along with hundreds of other valuable and rare
artifacts.

Thomas Jefferson is featured early in THE NAVIGATOR. A noted
inventor, Jefferson had written a detailed treatise on the
cultivation of artichokes to be delivered to Meriweather Lewis, of
Lewis and Clark fame. This document was actually a cipher, which
Lewis could read with the aid of a perforated sheet of heavy paper
--- a list of Indian words that Jefferson had encrypted. Were this
document to be intercepted by the wrong people, deciphered and made
public, the new nation could be in grave danger.

The centuries that pass from the Navigator’s creation through
its eventual recoveries is the focus of this newest Clive Cussler
novel. Only Cussler could capture the exotic themes, incredible
scenarios and plots thick with intrigue.

The artifacts from the Bagdad Museum are slated to be shown in a
special exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, and
the Navigator was to be the centerpiece of this fine exhibit. The
hunt is on to retrieve it yet again.

“Anthony Saxon was a true adventurer. Several years before,
Saxon had launched what could have been his greatest adventure. He
intended to sail a replica of a Phoenician ship from the Red Sea to
the coast of North America. The Pacific Ocean crossing would have
proven his theory that Ophis, the fabled site of King
Solomon’s Mines, was in the America’s. However, the
ship burned to the waterline one night under mysterious
circumstances.” Disaster seems to follow the Navigator and
the people attempting to secure this fabled statue.

Again, Clive Cussler and co-author Paul Kemprecos have created a
unique tale of high-seas adventure, with a complex but not an
overwhelming plot. NUMA followers will rejoice at the reappearance
of Kurt Austin, who picks right up where Dirk Pitt (now a Director
and Austin’s boss) left off. To me, the tie-in with Thomas
Jefferson and the Indian ciphers was the most interesting aspect of
this novel, but the Navigator’s history followed closely
behind. This is surely another great read by one of America’s
favorite and, in my opinion, premiere adventure writers.

Reviewed by Marge Fletcher on January 12, 2011

The Navigator: A Kurt Austin Adventure
by Clive Cussler

  • Publication Date: June 24, 2008
  • Genres: Adventure, Fiction
  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley
  • ISBN-10: 0425222365
  • ISBN-13: 9780425222362