Reviews for Mayan Secrets

Booklist Reviews 2013 July #1
Cussler's husband-and-wife globetrotting adventurers Sam and Remi Fargo return in this fifth novel in the series. Cowritten (like the previous installment, The Tombs, 2012) by acclaimed mystery novelist Thomas Perry, the book is a fast-paced story that revolves around a priceless artifact--a Mayan codex, a book that could shed light on a vanished culture. Of course--and this will come as no surprise to Cussler's regular readers--various people will stop at nothing to possess the artifact the Fargos have unearthed. Accusations of overreliance on formula are never entirely unwarranted with Cussler, but when the format and story are this much fun, readers won't mind. Sam and Remi are a likable pair of heroes, and the villains are appropriately villainous (but without taking that extra step into comic-book supervillainy). After the exciting ride that was The Tombs, this new book is a clear indication that the Fargo series, as long as Perry stays involved, will provide fine entertainment for adventure fans. Copyright 2013 Booklist Reviews.

Kirkus Reviews 2013 August #2
Cussler (The Tombs, 2012, etc.) drops treasure-hunting Sam and Remi Fargo into Mayan mysteries. Having found Attila's tomb, the Fargos are spending a vacation on Mexico's Pacific coast assisting in a marine biology project. News arrives from Tapachula, Mexico, of an earthquake. Loading their chartered yacht with supplies and physicians, the deep-pocketed, charitable Fargos sail to help. Stopping at damaged coastal villages, they hear of isolated indigenous people near Volcán Tacaná. They organize a relief party. In midtrek, Sam stumbles upon a Mayan tomb uncovered by the earthquake. In it, there's a mummified aristocrat and an urn containing a Mayan codex. Only four other Mayan codices exist, treasures of mathematical treatises, astronomical observations and histories. This one had been secreted in 1537 with the help of Dominican Friar de Las Casas, a singular codex "worth a hundred" of any other. Fearing looters, the Fargos rationalize smuggling the codex to San Diego. In pursuit comes Sarah Allersby, a "beautiful, rich, uninhibited, flamboyant" Englishwoman and Guatemalan landowner. After validation by experts, the Fargos test the codex's map's accuracy by locating a previously unknown Mayan site. Gunfights ensue. Underwater escapes are made. Cussler's tale is supported by historical and geographical factoids, cutting-edge tech gear and Tracy-Hepburn banter. Allersby next purloins the codex, but the Fargos jet to Spain to uncover a previously unknown copy secreted in de Las Casas' papers. Later, in Guatemala, the Fargos clash twice more with Allersby, her violent minions, her drug-smuggling allies and villagers guarding an ancient Mayan redoubt. Chapters are short, cinematic and blinged-out with regular mention of the right stuff: Maybach sedans; linen tablecloths and Wedgewood china; Fendi and Dolce & Gabbana; and exotic foodstuffs polished off with Argentine Malbec. The relatively lightweight adventure ends in a shoot-'em-up after Sam calls on Apache attack helicopter–equipped compatriots from his former CIA-like, top-secret, quasi-military organization. Cussler connoisseurs will approve. Others can enjoy it as a stand-alone adventure. Copyright Kirkus 2013 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

Publishers Weekly Reviews 2013 July #1

Early in bestseller Cussler's engaging fifth Fargo novel, this one like 2012's The Tombs with coauthor Perry, intrepid Sam and Remi Fargo, who have been tagging Great White sharks off the west coast of Mexico, volunteer their services after an earthquake hits the mainland. While packing medical supplies into an isolated mountain village, they stumble across a hidden Mayan tomb that contains a tremendous find: an extremely rare 486-year-old codex. Because of the earthquake chaos, they take it back home to La Jolla, Calif., where Mayan expert David Caine fills them in on the value of their find. Of course, someone else wants the codex, in this case an immensely wealthy amateur archeologist, Sarah Allersby, who first tries to buy it, then later tries to steal it. Eventually, the Fargos begin a chase involving the literal unearthing of several Mayan cities. They narrowly escape many attempts on their lives en route to the thrilling climax. Agent: Peter Lampack, Peter Lampack Agency. (Sept.)

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