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5.0 out of 5 stars Nimitz Class - A well told Naval/Political thriller!
After seeing this particular title and Patrick Robinson's other titles in the stores last year I decided to purchase them all based on the back cover descriptions. Prior to reading "Nimitz Class," I decided to check the other reviews to see how well the book was received and was somewhat disappointed to see that the majority of the reviews didn't hold this title in a...
Published on Aug. 17 2003 by K. Wyatt

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars I read it on third shift. . . .
Its been stated, truly or not, that there are some errors in the military/history aspect of this book. I don't know that that should ruin someone's hopes of enjoying this book. I recognize, though, the fact that most of the audience that this book attracts would pick up on those errors.
However, this all being said, I excuse the author by throwing out the thought...
Published on Dec 4 2000 by Nawfal


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1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing Book, Sept. 17 2003
By 
David C. Hoffner (Hebron, IN United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I picked up this book recently, but didn't get what I hoped for. I have a mild addiction to military/espionage thrillers. I grew up on World War II novels, but it was _The Hunt for Red October_ that gave me a taste for modern settings. I greatly enjoyed reading both _...Red October_ and _Red Storm Rising_ ten years ago. Ever since then I have occasionally picked up a military thriller for fun.
I see here that _Nimitz Class_ is actually the first book of a series. I can only hope that the others got better, though I don't think I'll spend the time to find out for myself. These characters were way too shallow and two-dimensional for my taste. Every time they meet one another, it's like a gathering of the gods on Mt. Olympus-every one is so admirable, experienced, capable and wonderful-they're straining their shoulders trying to pat each other on the back so much.
Several of the plot developments were also made easily predictable because the writer telegraphs his moves. For example, at one point the main character's mother tells him to bring a woman with him when he moves home after resigning his commission. Just a few pages later, one of the admirable admirals says he wants to introduce his daughter. Before she even appears on the page, I know that she is going to be going to a new home in Kansas by the end of the book (sorry if I ruined that for anyone, but gosh, if you didn't see it coming...).
Finally, I noticed a few technical mistakes, which didn't help the credibility of the story. For example, it is implied in the book that the current in the Bosporus always flows from North to South. I know from personal experience that this is not true. The current changes direction with the tides. Either a high tide is filling the Black Sea with Mediteranean water or a low tide is draining that water back out.
To its credit, this book has a plot that moves along just as briskly as that Bosporus current. But nonetheless I found it too shallow to be really enjoyable.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Nimitz Class - A well told Naval/Political thriller!, Aug. 17 2003
By 
K. Wyatt "ssintrepid" (Cape Girardeau, MO United States) - See all my reviews
After seeing this particular title and Patrick Robinson's other titles in the stores last year I decided to purchase them all based on the back cover descriptions. Prior to reading "Nimitz Class," I decided to check the other reviews to see how well the book was received and was somewhat disappointed to see that the majority of the reviews didn't hold this title in a particularly favorable light. With this in mind, I opened the front cover and dove in!
Much to my surprise and delight "Nimitz Class" is a well told Naval/Political thriller that is extraordinarily intriguing, the majority of the characters are compelling and the pacing of the novel is dead on accurate. As to whether Patrick Robinson is a new Tom Clancy, I'm not sure about that but he certainly holds his own in "Nimitz Class" and I'm looking forward to reading the rest of his novels.
At the very core of most successful writers list of Political/Military novels is a strong set of recurring characters. With "Nimitz Class" Patrick Robinson has set the stage for his characters such as Vice Admiral Arnold Morgan, Director, National Security Agency who is the spitting image of someone in his position, gruff in a good natured sort of way, tough as nails and extraordinarily intelligent.
The premise:
Deep in the Indian Ocean lies an American CVBG, Carrier Battle Group, a twelve warship group centered on the Nimitz class aircraft carrier, the USS Thomas Jefferson. She is on routine patrol after successfully engaging in war games with another carrier battle group. Suddenly several of the outlying ships take a massive airburst and huge waves, nearly capsizing a couple of the ships. Once everything settles down and the captain of the USS Arkansas regains command and control he attempts to make contact with every ship in the battle group. The main player in the group, the aircraft carrier can neither be reached through communications nor seen on radar. He immediately takes his ship to the carriers last known position only to find a high level of radiation and a couple of the ships that were close to her badly damaged. A US aircraft carrier and the six thousand men and women aboard are gone...
In comes the main players of the novel as the Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Scott Dunsmore is notified who then takes it up to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs General Joshua Paul and then on the President. A meeting is called to discuss what happened or what might've happened to the carrier. The Director of the National Security Agency, Arnold Morgan and a young Naval Intelligence officer, Lieutenant Commander Bill Baldridge whose brother just happened to have been the Captain of the USS Thomas Jefferson. While the general consensus is that this was somehow an accident aboard the aircraft carrier, Bill Baldridge, a nuclear expert explains otherwise and leads them down the path of discovery...
What follows is nothing short of an outstanding Naval/Political thriller that is a true page turner. At times, some of the text is somewhat clipped and the technical terminology is off a bit, both of which can be easily overlooked in the overall light of the plot which is thoroughly captivating. I highly recommend this novel to any and all fans of this genre! {ssintrepid}
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2.0 out of 5 stars This sub runs aground early, Sept. 1 2001
By 
Leaving aside the stock characters and the childishly simplistic politics, since these are pretty much standard for the genre, the big problem here is that there is no compelling forward movement to this story: It's a series of set pieces, starting with irrelevant activity aboard an aircraft carrier (irrelevant because the carrier soon vanishes) and including episodes in an Iranian navy yard and the Bosporus straits that could easily have come from entirely different books. The main character jets around the world a lot in an effort to make this all cohere; the narrative logic, though, is less that of a thriller than of a detective story, yet without the thing that gives a detective story its urgency: the need to prove a case. (As this book takes pains to make clear, the US military can inflict "justice" upon whomever it wants without proving anything, and even without having identified the right culprit; so why spend hundreds of pages detailing its evidence-gathering efforts?) The one and only potentially interesting female character appears for a grand total of about 5 pages, and while, again, I expect novels like this to be male-dominated, the author loses a chance here to add an element that would interest even (or especially) his mostly male readership.
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4.0 out of 5 stars English Author... English Advisor... American Setting?, July 19 2001
By 
"tomgadd" (Monte Sereno, CA United States) - See all my reviews
I read through a few of these reviews, most notably the bad ones. I thought this was a great book, and I have reread it, and read many of his other books. But one thing in all the reviews kept bugging me... People say there are technical errors. Would you have preferred if it was an English force throughout the whole book? If so, then the Ranks would be perfect, as Admiral Woodward is English. But he chose to make his book realistic. The book is written fantastically, and any technical errors made are simply because his advisor was not part of your system. The book is well written. Screw technical errors. If you read Tom Clancy, it is set in the future often, and some ranks do not even exist! Simply take it as what it is... a mystery (not military fiction) designed for normal people. The technical jargon is there to make people sound realistic to us normal people. I do not profess to know anything about the navy, military ranks, or anything else like that, except for what I learnt in this book, and what this book prompted me to find out. It is a great book.
So let it be, and let people read the mystery, the intrigue... not the obscure clerical errors made by a publisher.
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3.0 out of 5 stars I read it on third shift. . . ., Dec 4 2000
Its been stated, truly or not, that there are some errors in the military/history aspect of this book. I don't know that that should ruin someone's hopes of enjoying this book. I recognize, though, the fact that most of the audience that this book attracts would pick up on those errors.
However, this all being said, I excuse the author by throwing out the thought that not all we find in our classics like Shakespeare, Euripides, Juvenal, Sophocles, et al. are "historically" correct. Yet, we return often to such classics for their wit and wisdom.
This particular book is wonderful, regardless of the commentaries one may read about it. I would recommend it to readers simply for the "speeches" that Robinson writes for the fictional president to say. They are moving speeches and we can only hope and dream of having a real President with such fine oratorial skills... and such a fine message. They are moving speeches. Nothing tremendously "scholarly," but only the frozen wouldn't appreciate them.
Also, although most of us manly types do not buy thrillers for the love-interests in them, the brief touches of a love interest in the story are quite good and not too "mushy."
I agree, though, that the ending is weak. I think one could stop reading a few chapers prior to thumbing the back cover and still be satisfied with having completed the book. I have not read the rest of Robinson's work, but I have read Cobb, Clancy, et al.
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3.0 out of 5 stars A few facts for the PC idiots, Nov. 19 2000
By A Customer
I haven't even finished reading this book yet. A few people dismissed it simply becaue most of the characters are white & male. As an active-duty Air Force Sergeant, I thought I'd point a few things out. 1st, women very rarely make it to the general/admiral ranks for one simple reason. Women aren't allowed in combat roles, which is a law mandated by the US Congress, NOT the US military. As the movie GI Jane pointed out, without combat experience, without medals and commendations for heroism, valor and whatnot, it's going to be hard to win a promotion slot against a combat vet with a chest full of medals. Would you follow a battle plan devised by someone who had never been in combat and had no combat experience? Would you? As for the racial issue, there are many minorities in the military, but they are mostly in the enlisted ranks and there are few in the officer ranks (which ALL pilots and ship captains are), even fewer as rated pilots. Why? I have no idea. That's just the way it is. Life is not fair.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Sinks under its own weight., Aug. 8 2000
Fans of WWII submairne lore may recall the story of the Shinano, the Japanese super carrier sunk by a brace of merely six American torpedoes. Desperate to get their carrier to sea, the Japanese failed to make the ship sea-worthy, and an attack that couldn't have crippled the ship, instead found one already full of holes. "Nimitz Class", the technothriller in which one of America's mammoth super carriers is reduced to radioactive dust on the sea, looks like swiss cheese next to the ill-fated Shinano. Though publicly blaming the incident on a catastrophic reactor failure, a team of USN experts of astoundingly dubious ethic homogeneity quickly settle on nuclear terrorism. Though the signs point to a rogue diesel sub helmed by a master submariner, how the attackers managed to slip past carrier defenses that were trained to hunt them down is never satisfactorily explained. Instead, author Robinson hides behind the usual technothriller devices - hints at Hussein and mideast terrorists (though I had to go back to the novel to remind myslef which of Iran or Iraq ultimately gets the blame), rogue Russians, a brilliant lone-wolf USN nuclear expert, tough talking American brass (who are so uniformly white and male, they make the cast of "Midway" look positively multi-cultural) and a blizzard of details of dubious accuracy and even less dramatic value. More than any technothriller I can remember, "Nimitz Class" seems in awe of its perceived ability to create a plot built on the author's seeming mastery of details. The first few pages are a prime example, as the author draws life aboard the doomed carrier, filled with an eye towards the nuts and bolts of its operation and filled with laughably shallow versions of its crew. That the author fails miserably at this, when others have succeeded seems laughable when, only a few pages later, the rogue sub strikes and cardbord carrier and it's cartoon crew is no more.
What the author's technobabble does a better job of is covering up how unsure the author was about his own story. Whodunit? Robinson hits on the usual suspects, and I needed die@usa.com's review to remind me who ultimately gets the blame. The author crafts a complex web to explain how the perps got paid, but that seems unneccesarily convoluted. Robinson hits on an intriguing idea, one involving rogue Israelis (yeah, they've got subs) but, not waiting to develop the idea or its charachters, Robinson twists the idea again, and pretty soon, I stopped caring who paid for the job. By the end, having already suspended our belief, Robinson adds the final cheat: there is no climactic battle between the rogue sub and the hero - or any other developed charachter. Instead, in a major miscalculation, Robinson hinges the story on his hero's ability to match the rogue submariner's seemingly impossible feat of transiting from Russia's Black Sea HQ, through the Bhosporous and into the Med - submerged. Only seeing proof that this feat is possible will convince the US President to spend the billions needed to hunt the rogue sub down; one would think that the lost carrier was enough proof (they'd have to spend billions to fix the reactors and weapons of the other ships if the sub-story were not true and poor weapons really were to blame, and aren't subhunters at sea supposedly looking for hostile subs anyway?) Once the hero accomplishes this, other subs take to the sea to hunt the rogue down - and the success is bleakly unsatisfying. Some kind of submarine dogfight, though the predictable resolution, would have required a greater feel for the dynamics of submarine warfare than the author displays, and would have likely forced the author to actually develop the mystery submariner himself, who appears in no more than a few italicized lines throught the novel. want some submarine thrills, get "Red October" "Potemkin" or anything by Poyer, or rent "The Bedford Incident", based on a superior novel in its own right. As for "Nimitz Class", two diving planes, way down!!
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1.0 out of 5 stars Really miserable reading experience!, June 12 2000
By 
Carl (New York, New York) - See all my reviews
I disliked this book so much that I threw it in the trash after reading, just to prevent anyone else from getting their hands on it (a first for me). The book's central idea and bits of technical military detail kept me plugging on, despite intense frustration with the writer's effort. The characters are unbelievable. They exist in a world completely unrelated to reality, where all workers are supremely suited for their jobs, and live in awe of their bosses. World military and political action are presented as though the private 'game' of about 10 people. And there is no complexity of thought here: pro-military good/any other value system bad. The military insights of the characters that are presented as so impressive should be familiar to any military book reader or submarine computer simulation player. The ending was not worth the effort of slogging through pages of political lecture and military worship. In sum, the book ends up reading like a bad argument for unlimited military spending, with a clunky story wrapped around it.
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1.0 out of 5 stars A Very Bad Book, May 5 2000
By A Customer
It is not Clancy, or anywhere close. It is not accurate, or anywhere close. It is not plausible half the time, which ruins the aspects of the story that are plausible. Readers of this book should wonder about a few things, instead of trumpeting the good aspects of the book (whatever they might be).
The lack of knowledge about international affairs is evidenced by the repeated use of the standard stereotypes for various ethnic groups and countries. The blatant disregard for the honorable service in the Armed Forces of the United States by women, African-Americans, Hispanics and other minority groups is really quite loathesome.
Finally, there are a good many honorable men and women who serve as public servants in the government of the United States of America. Many have fought for this country in the aforementioned Armed Forces. And you know what? Some of 'em are Republicans, and some of 'em are Democrats. The categorization of Democrats in this book by Mr. Robinson is simply irresponsible.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Yes, author made mistakes -- but..., March 15 2000
By 
James Harper (Washington State) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
All those one-star reviews miss a lot, some because the "readers" critiqued an audiotape. As a writer, Mr. Robinson is actually quite good, better than his Technical Advisors. As has been noted, he gets the ranks wrong, but nobody says HOW. The 5-star general is a minor character, and maybe Robinson imagines that if one is Chairman of Joint Chiefs, he'd get that coveted 5th star. But Bill Baldridge is THE major character, and if he were only a Lieutenant Commander, (1) That's JUNIOR rank in the US Navy, not senior; (2) As one who bucks senior authority, maybe he'd still never get promoted, but he also wouldn't still be in the Navy -- get passed over for promotion to full commander twice, and he's out, friends in high places or not, and the Big Star he's supposed to be would surely have been up for promotion. As for the A-6 being in service in 2002, the author probably wrote the manuscript in 1994-5, well before the A-6 became obsolete, and the rest of the inacccuracies are Story Telling. Some places in America, people are exactly as parochial/provincial as one reader review denies we are. Yes, too many cowboylike Kansans and Nebraskans -- those being mostly farming states, not gunfighter-cowboy states, but some American advisor or editor should've noted those errors before the book saw its release in America. It's a "good read," for the most part, and should make a fine movie.
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Nimitz Class
Nimitz Class by Patrick Robinson (Paperback - 1998)
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