May, 1914. Two undercover couriers plummet to watery deaths in twin disasters, taking with them the only two copies of the North American Treaty, a precedent-shattering secret pact between the United States and Great Britain. On both sides of the Atlantic, stunned heads of state immediately order all mention of the treaty obliterated... forever.
February, 1989. In the midst of an international crisis, Heidi Milligan, a beautiful, brilliant American naval commander accidentally discovers an obscure reference to the long buried North American Treaty - prompting the President of the United States to the shocking realization that the treaty offers the only salvation for an energy-starved, economically-devastated America. For the United States, possession of this document is suddenly worth billions. But to Great Britain, it's worth a war.
The deadly race is on to locate and raise one of the signed copies of the treaty from its ocean grave - where it has been lying for 75 years. The only American for such a mission is Dirk Pitt, who proved invincible in Raise the Titanic!
Now, with the future of virtually every person in the world at stake, he must survive a complex international mission far more dangerous than any he has ever undertaken. His quest: slash through a tangled web of cover-ups and perilous intrigue and - against all odds - recover the North American Treaty for the United States. In London, a daring counter-plot is being orchestrated to secure the vital document for Great Britain. The treaty must not be implemented.
Brian Shaw, a master spy who has often worked hand in hand with American agents against SMERSH, no confronts his most challenging command - stop Dirk Pitt. Pitt and Shaw, two of the most cunning men in the world, collide head-on in their frantic search. And caught in the middle is Heidi Milligan. In the throes of international uproar, her passions and her loyalty are put to a severe test when she finds herself enmeshed in a torrid love triangle with the two battling foes.
As time runs out for a desperate America, Pitt races towards an underwater clash more terrifying and more exciting than anything Clive Cussler has ever created - the breathtaking climax of Night Probe!
Exclamation-point-happy Cussler (Raise the Titanic!) is in zesty form here, inflating a balloon of nonsense that maintains a steady, technological-comic-strip interest. It's 1989, the US is energy-broke (dependent on Quebec's resources), and Navy Commander Heidi Milligan - 30, divorced, survivor of a hysterectomy and an affair with an admiral twice her age - discovers a 1914 note to British P.M. Herbert Asquith from Woodrow Wilson, who laments a lost North American Treaty between England and America. And who is Heidi's new lover? None other than Dirk Pitt, hero of Cussler's underwater-salvage series, who's been secretly scuttling about the North Atlantic in his fantastic submersible, the Doodlebug, finding a ten-billion barrel oil deposit in the waters off Quebec. So Heidi tells Pitt about the missing treaty, copies of which were being carried, in 1914, by two diplomats - both of whom were mysteriously killed, the treaty copies sinking (one in the Hudson, one in the St. Lawrence). And what was in the treaty? Well, folks, Britain had sold Canada to the US for one billion dollars, to help finance defenses against Germany! So now the US president orders Pitt to salvage the lost treaties (remember that Quebec energy problem), and Pitt mounts both underwater operations at once. After excruciating - and quite exciting - recovery work in the sunken ship in the St. Lawrence, the treaty copy there proves to be mush. So it's off to the sunken train in the Hudson. But the train isn't there: it was diverted into an empty quarry and sealed there with its gold shipment, making quite a museum piece when Pitt finds it with its mummified passengers. The treaty is found at last, however, and so the president can address the House of Commons and Senate in Quebec, announcing that our two countries have been one since 1914 (and now we can share in the oil boom). Utter folderol, but lots of zippy fun. (Kirkus Reviews)
Number Of Pages: 384
Published: 11th October 1993
Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 17.8 x 10.9 x 2.5
Weight (kg): 0.2
Edition Number: 1