Clive Cussler died on Monday, February 24, his publisher confirmed. And it’s hit me because of how much of a spark his books were in getting me into cheap thrillers. The very first real “cheap thriller” I read was a Clive Cussler NUMA Files book, Fire Ice. More and more Cusslers soon found their way into my hands, both the earlier ones and the later “Tom Clancy’s” ones with different authors doing more and more of the heavy lifting.
Before Blaine McCracken, before Hawker Hunter, before John Rourke, before even Patrick McLanahan, there was Kurt Austin and Dirk Pitt taking me through thrilling and sometimes strange adventures on the page. RIP.
2 thoughts on “Clive Cussler, RIP”
Wow, I thought Clive Cussler died years ago.
My early teens, I soaked up his classic books. Raise the Titanic of course, Iceberg, Night Probe…
The format was enthralling. Start off with a prologue tragedy in the past, involving a ship (or train). Fast forward to modern times with Dirk Pitt and NUMA following the clues to the wreck, sexy ladies, toss in some international villains, action sequences, discover the wreck in the meantime, and finish off with some jaw-dropping crypto-history revelation.
I remember the US and Canada were supposed to be united under a lost treaty in one of those books.
I don’t even want to go back and re-read them for fear of spoiling my memories. ;^)
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I can say the same here-Cussler, more than any other author, got me into “cheap thrillers.” Counting Sahara as a science fiction novel, in fact, that book made my personal list of “My Five Most Important Science Fiction Novels”:
As to the enthralling format–totally agree, with Dirk Pitt getting my vote for the closest thing America has produced to a James Bond:
In case anyone’s curious-the U.S.-Canadian unification happened in 1981’s Night Probe (the plot had to do with the hunt for that treaty), and the event was referenced a few times afterward. As to going back-not too long ago I revisited some of the older works, at least, and was surprised by how well they still managed to entertain.
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