Reliable. The latest Kurt Austin novel from Clive Cussler and Paul Kemprecos is titled Medusa. In this outing, the NUMA hero tackles the exploits of a Chinese gang who are trying to overthrow the government through the spread of a virus, and have stolen an undersea lab that is developing a cure by using jellyfish toxins. While the action can be adrenaline-packed at times, and the structure of the novel follows Cussler’s typical formula, most of the writing is weak, and the extremes of character development: super-heroes and super-villains leave little room for the nuances found in most real personalities. So many of the entrances and exits of both heroes and villains were unlikely and unexplained that I found myself laughing when one or the other made a slippery getaway. I find most of Cussler’s novel to be the Lay’s Potato Chips of action novels: reliable in taste, one you start, you’ll probably finish, and in the end, it’s still junk food. For a summer escape that doesn’t require any thinking, consider picking up Medusa for a few hours of mild entertainment.
Rating: Two-star (Mildly Recommended)