From Publishers Weekly
This newest addition to the Kurt Austin series (after Blue Gold) has the men from NUMA ([National] Underwater & Marine Agency) team up with former KGB spies to face down a Russian mobster with czarist aspirations and a zealot's hatred for the "corruption and materialism" of the Western lifestyle. The NUMA research vessel Argo is in the Black Sea for a PR jaunt when Austin spots the overdue TV crew being chased down an island beach by mounted Cossacks. Austin learns from his old KGB Cold War adversary Vladimir Petrov that the island is a mothballed submarine base commandeered by paranoid mobster Mikhail Razov (employer of the Cossacks), a billionaire who built Ataman Industries by taking over utilities and mines sold by the state. Razov claims descent from the Romanovs and is plotting to assume the throne. Meanwhile, when a U.S. Navy sub goes missing and a mysterious tidal wave swamps a Maine coastal town, the NUMA team figures out that Ataman is mining "fire ice" unstable and explosive solid methane in the high-pressure deep-sea bottom. Austin and his oceanographic team join forces with Petrov and set out to foil Razov's plot. Cussler is in top form here, working in a role for Old Ironsides and Czar Nicholas II's crown while throwing in enough derring-do and eco-lore to leave his fans breathless. Coauthor Kemprecos (Blue Gold, with Cussler) adds his oceanographic expertise to the mix.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
From School Library Journal
Adult/High School-Deposits of "fire ice," frozen methane hydrate found in abundance off of the East Coast of the United States, become potential hazards of monumental proportions. When an insane Russian mining mogul decides he can use the sub stance to threaten and destroy large areas of major national powers, he becomes the target for Kurt Austin, leader of NUMA's (National Underwater and Marine Agency) Special Assignments Team. Austin and his partner in the fight against crime, Joe Zavala, encounter a band of traditionally dressed and armed Cossacks; an underground bunker of a Nazi sub; and the Russian mogul's assistant, who looks and acts like Rasputin. With its many surprises, constant action, and Cussler's special brand of characters, the book will be just the thing for readers who enjoy fast-paced action-adventure flavored with some alternate-history events.Pam Johnson, Fairfax County Public Library, VA
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.