William Dietrich is back with another fast-paced new adventure--one that brings together Norse mythology, the American wilderness, and a swashbuckling explorer in an irresistible page-turner.
Ethan Gage, the hero of Napoleon's Pyramids and The Rosetta Key, just wants to enjoy the fruits of victory after helping Napoleon win the Battle of Marengo and end an undeclared naval war with the United States.
But a foolish tryst with Bonaparte's married sister and the improbable schemes of a grizzled Norwegian named Magnus Bloodhammer soon send Ethan on a new treasure hunt on America's frontier that will have him dodging scheming aristocrats and hostile Indians.
In 1801 newly elected president Thomas Jefferson, taking office in the burgeoning capital of Washington, D.C., convinces Ethan and Magnus to go on a scouting expedition--one that precedes that of Lewis and Clark--to investigate reports of woolly mammoths and blue-eyed Indians.
The pair have their own motive, however, which they neglect to share with the president: a search for the mythical hammer of the Norse god Thor, allegedly brought by fugitive Norsemen to the center of North America 150 years before Columbus. Can the hammer control thunder and lightning? Is there a core of truth to this myth?
Ethan's journey takes him across the Great Lakes to country no white man has seen, but not before he becomes entangled with a British temptress, a comely captive, a French voyageur, and a landscape as breathtaking as it is perilous.
Ancient Norse runes will lead him to his most fantastic discovery yet--and to wonder, danger, mystery, and sorrow that will test every ounce of wit and skill Gage can muster. The Dakota Cipher is another exciting adventure by a writer who has quickly become one of America's most beloved and inventive thriller masterminds.
Starred Review. Fast, fun and full of surprises, Dietrich's rollicking third Ethan Gage escapade (after The Rosetta Key) takes the expatriate American diplomat and soldier-of-fortune home to investigate the Louisiana territory, preceding Lewis and Clark, for Napoleon, who claims it was secretly sold back to France. Accompanying Ethan is Magnus Bloodhammer, a Norwegian berserker who hopes to find Thor's Hammer, a magic talisman of his people supposedly brought to America by Knights Templar hundreds of years before Columbus sailed. With the blessing of President Thomas Jefferson (who asks him to keep an eye out for woolly mammoths), Ethan and Magnus light out for the northwest, where their steps are dogged by vindictive British loyalists, hostile Indians and unlikely disciples of an Egyptian snake cult. The tale twists and turns like a spitted serpent, but Dietrich shows his sure hand as a storyteller, leavening a tale rich in intrigue and impressive historic detail with abundant wit and humor. (Apr.)
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1 . Enjoyed reading
Posted May 05, 2009 by PKing , BentonWile waiting for another Dan Brown or Steve Berry book to come out, I discovered this author. It is not as intense as the Brown or Berry books, but an enjoyable read. I will read the rest of Dietrich's books now (while still waiting).
March 22, 2009
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