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Marine explorer Dirk Pitt must rely on the nautical lore of Jules Verne to stop a ruthless oil baron with his sights set on political power in this #1 New York Times-bestselling series.
In the middle of its maiden voyage, a luxury cruise ship using revolutionary new engines suddenly catches fire and sinks. Its alarms stay silent; its sprinkler system remains inactive. Nearby NUMA special projects director Dirk Pitt notices smoke and races to the rescue. He's too late to save the engineer behind the ship's new technology, but helps the man's daughter, Kelly Egan, escape with her father's work in a leather briefcase.
While Ms. Egan strives to uncover the hidden value in her father's inventions, Pitt is hired on by maritime insurers to investigate the wreckage. Neither are prepared for the mechanical marvels they'll soon be forced to confront. The machines could only be the stuff of legend, described in the tales of Viking explorers or the accounts of Jules Verne. And they may be Pitt and Egan's only hope when an oil tycoon with a plan of his own appears on the scene.
Before journey's end, Pitt will take on a power-mad millionaire, tread upon territory previously known only to Verne's illustrious Captain Nemo, and make shocking discoveries about his own past.
Pitt and his trusty pal Al Giordino track the sinking to the boardroom door of a multinational conglomerate called Cerberus, whose evil CEO has designs on the world's oil supply. He'll do anything to keep Egan's advanced engines and secret formula for frictionless oil off the market--even sabotage another vessel, this time a luxury passenger submarine. By the time our heroes have foiled the mastermind's nefarious plots, they've also uncovered the existence of a working submarine nearly a century before one actually existed--irrefutable proof of a Viking landing on the Hudson River--and the remains of the British sailor who inspired Jules Verne's Captain Nemo. A solid page-turner that even features a cameo appearance by the author himself, Valhalla Rising snaps, crackles, and pops with Cussler's usual brio. --Jane Adams
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