Coppley, Jackson. The Ocean Raiders. Chevy Chase, MD: Contour Press, 2020. ISBN 979-8-6443-4371-3.
Nicholas Foxe is back! After the rip-roaring adventure and world-changing revelations of The Code Hunters (April 2019), the wealthy adventurer with degrees in archaeology and cryptography arrives in Venice to visit an ambitious project by billionaire Nevin Dowd to save the city from inundation by the sea, but mostly to visit Christine Blake, who he hadn't seen for years since an affair in Paris and who is now handling public relations for Dowd's project. What he anticipates to be a pleasant interlude becomes deadly serious when an attempt on his life is made immediately upon his arrival in Venice. Narrowly escaping, and trying to discover the motive, he learns that Dowd's team has discovered an underwater structure that appears to have been built by the same mysterious ancients who left the Tablet and the Omni, from which Nick's associates are trying to extract its knowledge. As Nick investigates further, it becomes clear a ruthless adversary is seeking the secrets of the ancients and willing to kill to obtain them. But who, and what is the secret?

This is another superb adventure/thriller in which you'll be as mystified as the protagonist by the identity of the villain until almost the very end. There is a large cast of intriguing and beautifully portrayed characters, and the story takes us to interesting locations which are magnificently sketched. Action abounds, and the conclusion is thoroughly satisfying, while leaving abundant room for further adventures. You, like I, will wish you had a friend like Guido Bartoli. The novel can be read stand-alone, but you'll enjoy it more if you've first read The Code Hunters, as you'll know the back-story of the characters and events which set this adventure into motion.

The author kindly let me read a pre-publication manuscript of this novel. The Kindle edition is free to Kindle Unlimited subscribers.

June 2020 Permalink