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(Critical Survey of Contemporary Fiction)

The plan was without flaw, the result was foreordained, but the conspirators reckoned without misadventure--a spate of bad luck which places the redoubtable Dirk Pitt in the lists against them. An alliance between a Japanese industrialist and the Japanese underworld results in a plan to reverse the consequences of World War II. Indeed, the conspirators contemplate domination not merely of the United States but of the world. This unprecedented seizure of power is to be accomplished by means of nuclear devices in strategic locations within the industrialized nations of the world. In a stroke of originality, however, the nuclear devices are not to be placed in population centers. Rather, their placement is designed to produce an overlapping electromagnetic pulse which will effectively destroy any machine utilizing microchip technology.

Once Dirk Pitt and the U.S. government are aware of the threat, measures to eliminate the conspirators are immediately set in place. While he is aided by the massive technological resources which the government places at his disposal, it is Pitt’s own considerable intellectual and physical talents that prove decisive in saving the world from tyranny.

If recent publications are any clue, the seeming collapse of the Cold War has left those who produce thrillers without an effective villain. Fortunately for the continued financial success of the likes of Cussler, David Morrell (THE FIFTH PROFESSION), and others of that ilk, the ubiquitous Japanese industrialist provides a viable substitute. Cussler continues to write within the context of the formula he developed with his first best-seller, RAISE THE TITANIC, and therefore DRAGON will undoubtedly please his legion of fans.