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Raise the Titanic! (Dirk Pitt Series #3)

Raise the Titanic! (Dirk Pitt Series #3)

4.2 168
by Clive Cussler, Paul McCarthy (Editor)

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The President's secret task force develops the ultimate defensive weapon. At its core: byzantium, a radioactive element so rare sufficient quantities have never been found. But a frozen American corpse on a desolate Soviet mountainside, a bizarre mining accident in Colorado, and a madman's dying message lead Dirk Pitt to a secret cache of byzantium. Now he begins his


The President's secret task force develops the ultimate defensive weapon. At its core: byzantium, a radioactive element so rare sufficient quantities have never been found. But a frozen American corpse on a desolate Soviet mountainside, a bizarre mining accident in Colorado, and a madman's dying message lead Dirk Pitt to a secret cache of byzantium. Now he begins his most thrilling, daunting mission--to raise from its watery grave the shipwreck of the century.

Product Details

Pocket Books
Publication date:
Dirk Pitt Series , #3
Product dimensions:
4.18(w) x 6.82(h) x 1.11(d)

Read an Excerpt

Chapter TwoSid Koplin was sure he was dying.

His eyes were closed and the blood from his side was staining the white snow. A burst of light whirled around in Koplin's mind as consciousness gradually returned, and a spasm of nausea rushed over him and he retched uncontrollably. Had he been shot once, or was it twice? He wasn't sure.

He opened his eyes and rolled up onto his hands and knees. His head pounded like a jackhammer. He put his hand to it and touched a congealed gash that split his scalp above the left temple. Except for the headache, there was no exterior sensation; the pain had been dulled by the cold. But there was no dulling of the agonizing burn on his left side, just below his rib cage, where the second bullet had struck, and he could feel the syruplike stickiness of the blood as it trickled under his clothing, over his thighs and down his legs.

A volley of automatic weapons fire echoed down the mountain. Koplin looked around, but all he could see was the swirling white snow that was whipped by the vicious arctic wind. Another burst tore the frigid air. He guessed that it came from only a hundred yards away. A Soviet patrol guard must be firing blindly through the blizzard in the random hope of hitting him again.

All thought of escape had vanished now. It was finished. He knew he could never make it to the cove where he'd moored the sloop. Nor was he in any condition to sail the little twenty-eight-foot craft across fifty miles of open sea to a rendezvous with the waiting American oceanographic vessel.

He sank back in the snow. The bleeding had weakened him beyond further physical effort. The Russians must not find him. That was part of the bargain with Meta Section. If he must die, his body must not be discovered.

Painfully, he began scraping snow over himself. Soon he would be only a small white mound on a desolate slope of Bednaya Mountain, buried forever under the constantly building ice sheet.

He stopped a moment and listened. The only sounds he heard were his own gasps and the wind. He listened harder, cupping his hands to his ears. Just audible through the howling wind he heard a dog bark.

"Oh God," he cried silently. As long as his body was still warm, the sensitive nostrils of the dog were sure to pick up his scent. He sagged in defeat. There was nothing left for him but to lie back and let his life ooze away.

But a spark deep inside him refused to dim and be extinguished. Merciful God, he thought deliriously, he couldn't just lie there waiting for the Russians to take him. He was only a professor of mineralogy, not a trained secret agent. His mind and forty-year-old body weren't geared to stand up under intensive interrogation. If he lived, they could tear the whole story from him in a matter of hours. He closed his eyes as the sickness of failure overcame all physical agony.

When he opened them again, his field of vision was filled with the head of an immense dog. Koplin recognized him as a komondor, a mighty beast standing thirty inches at the shoulder, covered by a heavy coat of matted white hair. The great dog snarled savagely and would have ripped Koplin's throat open if it hadn't been kept in check by the gloved hand of a Soviet soldier. There was an indifferent look about the man. He stood there and stared down at his helpless quarry, gripping the leash in his left hand while he steadied a machine pistol with his right. He looked fearsome in his huge greatcoat that came down to booted ankles, and the pale, expressionless eyes showed no compassion for Koplin's wounds. The soldier shouldered his weapon and reached down and pulled Koplin to his feet. Then without a word, the Russian began dragging the wounded American toward the island's security post.

Koplin nearly passed out from the pain. He felt as though he'd been dragged through the snow for miles when actually it was only a distance of fifty yards. That was as far as they'd got when a vague figure appeared through the storm. It was blurred by the wall of swirling white. Through the dim haze of near unconsciousness, Koplin felt the soldier stiffen. A soft "plop" sounded over the wind, and the massive komondor fell noiselessly on its side in the snow. The Russian dropped his hold on Koplin and frantically tried to raise his gun, but the strange sound was repeated and a small hole that gushed red suddenly appeared in the middle of the soldier's forehead. Then the eyes went glassy and he crumpled beside the dog.

Something was terribly wrong; this shouldn't be happening, Koplin told himself, but his exhausted mind was too far gone to draw any valid conclusions. He sank to his knees and could only watch as a tall man in a gray parka materialized from the white mist and gazed down at the dog.

"A damned shame," he said tersely.

The man presented an imposing appearance. The oak- tanned face looked out of place for the Arctic. And the features were firm, almost cruel. Yet it was the eyes that struck Koplin. He had never seen eyes quite like them. They were a deep sea-green and radiated a penetrating kind of warmth, a marked contrast from the hard lines etched in the face.

The man turned to Koplin and smiled. "Dr. Koplin, I presume?" The tone was soft and effortless.

The stranger pushed a handgun with silencer into a pocket, knelt down to eye level, and nodded at the blood spreading through the material of Koplin's parka. "I'd better get you to where I can take a look at that." Then he picked Koplin up as one might a child and began trudging down the mountain toward the sea.

"Who are you?" Koplin muttered.

"My name is Pitt. Dirk Pitt."

"I don't understand...where did you come from?"

Koplin never heard the answer. At that moment, the black cover of unconsciousness abruptly lifted up, and he fell gratefully under it.

Copyright © 1976 by Clive Cussler

Meet the Author

Clive Cussler is the author of more than fifty books in five bestselling series, including Dirk Pitt, NUMA Files, Oregon Files, Isaac Bell, and Fargo. His life nearly parallels that of his hero Dirk Pitt. Whether searching for lost aircraft or leading expeditions to find famous shipwrecks, he and his NUMA crew of volunteers have discovered more than seventy-five lost ships of historic significance, including the long-lost Confederate submarine Hunley, which was raised in 2000 with much press publicity. Like Pitt, Cussler collects classic automobiles. His collection features more than eighty examples of custom coachwork. Cussler lives in Arizona and Colorado.

Brief Biography

Phoenix, Arizona
Date of Birth:
July 15, 1931
Place of Birth:
Aurora, Illinois
Pasadena City College; Ph.D., Maritime College, State University of New York, 1997

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Raise the Titanic! (Dirk Pitt Series #3) 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 168 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is, I believe, the first Dirk Pit novel. Written when the discovery of the Titanic was still a number of years in the future, the story sweeps you in and holds you until the last page, and in Cussler's deft hands, raising the great doomed ship sounds almost possible. This novel was made into a movie, and, though I haven't seen it in years, read the book first, then see if you can find the movie. You'll love them both. Dirk Pit makes James Bond look like a wimp!
SeeleyKaye More than 1 year ago
I first met Dirk Pitt when I was in high school, and I just fell for him. Such fun adventures! He's a little chauvinist but just the right touch. When I first read Raise the Titanic! I thought it was real. :) I'm re-reading the entire series, and I've enjoyed every page.
madmarlton More than 1 year ago
This is the fourth Dirk Pitt novel to be written, but the first one that put Pitt and Cussler on the map. If you've seen the movie but haven't read the book, do yourself a big favor and wipe the movie from your memory and then enjoy the book. I read somewhere that Cussler refused to sell the movie rights to any of his other books after he'd seen what a botched job they did of this one. (He relented later on.) The best thing about the movie -- perhaps the only good thing -- is the scene where the ship finally breaches the surface of the ocean. It was so effective they repeated it during the closing credits! But getting back to the book, if you've read any other Cussler books, bear in mind that this was pretty much where it started. Cussler obviously hit the ground running and amazingly he hasn't stopped since. I hope he keeps writing for the rest of my life!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fun and fast moving story even though the remains of the Titanic were actually found long ago. As all Dirk Pitt stories are it was great adventure fantasy! Recommended for anyone Who likes adventures stories.
Greg Johnson More than 1 year ago
this is a book that keeps you hanging. it was hard to imagine because im used to titanic being in two pieces and not a whole.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is only the third Clive Cussler book I've read, but now I will definitely read more. "Raise the Titanic" was fast-paced, and totally believable - A REAL PAGE TURNER. It's amazing he originally wrote this 10 years before the real Titanic was found. You will not be disappointed!!
Pastgov More than 1 year ago
The characters are great, There is always something you learn about them in (almost) evry book
Guest More than 1 year ago
For the most part not much really happens. It was written in the 70's when people were still terrified about Communism. I could of seen this book a good read if I was older and actually lived during those times but since I didn't I found it hard to connect with the book. This is the 16th Clive Cussler book I have read and still think he is a great author and find it interesting to read how much Dirk Pitt has changed. In the more recent books (mid 80s and on) Pitt has more of a solid typical hero vibe. In the older books he is more arrogant and kind of a jerk. Just interesting to see the character development there.
BonniesMom More than 1 year ago
This was the first Clive Cussler novel I read, and I was hooked from the first line! I have always been fascinated by the Titanic disaster and have read a lot of different books about it. This is my favorite, by far! It has everything...a hot, sexy hero, drama, terrible storms, intrigue, good guys, villains, and did I mention a hot sexy hero? I never saw the movie, why bother? You imagination is so much better! If you have never read a Dirk Pitt novel, this is the best one to start with.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Twist around evry corner its a book you cant put down a must read
kingspoint93 More than 1 year ago
It is amazing that a decade before Ballard found the actual Titanic, Cussler does such an amazing job describing the techniques that would be used in eventually locating the ship. Dirk Pitt in his early days is a much more interesting character to me and this is him at his apex. If you have not ever read Cussler's early work - do yourself a favor and see why many consider him a genius of the genre.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The historical fiction of CC is already gripping... but the fact that he wrote this before the Titanic was discovered makes it gold. Great storyline with plenty of twists. Loved it
JBK35019 More than 1 year ago
Great reading, keeps you guessing what's going to happen next. Clive Cussler always puts twists in the plot to keep it exciting!!
Anonymous 6 months ago
Enjoyab le even after so many years. Too bad it couldn't have been done
Anonymous 11 months ago
I like that the book tells what one of the passengers of Titanic is thinking at the moment,and some imformation about the ship.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My new favorite author
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Go to the next result
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
He looked at his sister and chuckled
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is hands down the best book I have ever read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good and fits the rules of a good fiction, mystery and entertaining reading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is the 1st Dirk Pitt book I read and I was not disappointed. It started off a little slow, but ended up being a great read. I wish I could read ALL of the books in the series but Barnes & Noble only has a select few, bummer. C'mon B&N, give me access to the whole series!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago