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(Critical Survey of Contemporary Fiction)

In 391, the Emperor Flavius Theodosius decreed that the library at Alexandria be purged of all items remotely pagan in origin or subject matter. This dramatic act of censorship drastically reduced the store of information concerning the world before 391. Fortunately, Dirk Pitt, of the National Underwater and Marine Agency (NUMA), discovers quite by accident, that the last librarian at Alexandria disobeyed the orders of the emperor and transported the bulk of the collection to a secret hiding place. At stake are not only literary and philosophical works long thought lost but also maps revealing the location of such legendary treasures as the mines of King Solomon, the lost gold mines of the Pharaohs, and a king’s ransom in oil under the sands of Israel.

The discovery of the lost materials after sixteen centuries would be difficult enough, given the rather sparse information available to Pitt-- even with the vast resources of NUMA at his disposal--but he is unable to devote his considerable talents to the task. Instead, he must contend with a criminal conspiracy scheming to place Egypt and Mexico in the hands of two brothers who would destroy the fragile politico-economic structure which sustains the modern world. At the same time, he must outwit, outmaneuver and destroy one of the most unscrupulous, brutal, and amoral fictional creations since Dr. Fu Manchu battled Sir Denis Nayland Smith for the future of civilization.

Clive Cussler is adept at constructing an elaborate plot with so many loose ends that it seems unlikely to ever be resolved. Nevertheless, his fans have learned to be patient, for Cussler has yet to leave even the smallest thread untied or the most minor question unanswered, and TREASURE is no exception. The action is sustained at a breakneck pace through to the last page, with the reader at the edge of his seat throughout.