GRANDMASTER OF ADVENTURE: A Conversation with Clive Cussler at The Mark Twain House & Museum on Thursday, June 14
Famed Author Will Talk About His Life and Work and Sign Just-Released NUMA Files Adventure, The Storm
The New York Daily News calls Clive Cussler's work "Get-to-the-next-page excitement," and describes his famed hero, Dirk Pitt, as "a combination James Bond and Jacques Cousteau."
Famed for his pulse-raising action novels, Cussler is the author or coauthor of more than forty books, including twenty-one Dirk Pitt tales, eight NUMA Files adventures, eight Oregon Files books, the Isaac Bell historical thrillers, and the Fargo Adventures.
And next Thursday, June 14, at 7:30 p.m.,you can meet the Grandmaster of Adventure at The Mark Twain House & Museum, where Twain produced books that also bristled with adventure and insight.
Cussler will take part in a special conversation with the museum's publications editor and resident author, Steve Courtney. The evening will include a special VIP reception and booksigning, including Cussler's latest (published this week!), The Storm.
Just read the jacket copy for his first Dirk Pitt novel, The Mediterranean Caper, and you'll get the Bondian idea: "In his efforts to uncover the source behind the sabotage of a scientific expedition, Pitt finds himself in the company of a psychopathic ex-Nazi; an unrelenting narcotics agent; a savage, bloodthirsty Greek strongman; a beautiful double-agent; and an amateur egg-head commando group."
Twenty more Dirk Pitt novels have followed, and Cussler has added to them the NUMA files adventures, chronicling the feats of an undersea, shipwreck-seeking version of NASA; the Oregon Files books, in which a high-tech U.S. ship plies the world dealing mayhem to terrorists, disguised as a pile of junk; the Isaac Bell historical thrillers, in which detective Bell fights crime in the gilded era before World War I; and the Fargo adventures, tales of a husband-and-wife treasure-hunting team.
"I have never considered myself as much a writer as an entertainer," Cussler tells visitors to his website. "I've sincerely felt that my job was to entertain you the reader in such a manner that when you reached the end of the book you felt that you had got your money's worth."
A Conversation with Clive Cussler takes place Thursday, June 14, at Tickets are $45 ($40 for Mark Twain House & Museum members). A VIP ticket, which includes a reception with Clive Cussler at 6 p.m., is $85. Call 860-280-3130 to reserve, but you'd better do it quickly.
"When I created Dirk Pitt, Al Giordino and all their friends in the NUMA books and the characters in the other series I had no idea how many people I would eventually reach around the world," Cussler says. "Even now I cannot express anything other than humility for being lucky enough to do so."
Clive Cussler grew up in Alhambra, Calif., attended Pasadena City College and served in the Air Force during the Korean War. He worked as a copywriter and creative director for two leading ad agencies, and wrote and produced radio and television commercials that won international awards, one at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival. He published The Mediterranean Caper in 1973. His first non-fiction work, The Sea Hunters, was released in 1996 -- and the State University of New York accepted the book in lieu of a Ph.D. thesis, awarding Cussler a Doctor of Letters degree in 1997.
Cussler is the founder and chairman of the real-life NUMA, the National Underwater & Marine Agency, a non-profit organization dedicated to American maritime and naval history. Some of its finds include the C.S.S. Hunley, best known as the first submarine to sink a ship in battle, and the U-20, the U-boat that sank the Lusitania.
He is a fellow in both the Explorers Club of New York and the Royal Geographic Society in London. A noted collector of classic automobiles, Clive owns over 100 of the finest examples of custom coachwork and 1950s convertibles to be found anywhere, garaged near Golden, Colorado. Cussler divides his time between that mountainous state and the deserts of Arizona.
The Mark Twain House & Museum (www.marktwainhouse.org) has restored the author's Hartford, Connecticut, home, where Samuel L. Clemens and his family lived from 1874 to 1891.
Twain wrote his most important works during the years he lived there, including
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court.
In addition to providing tours of Twain's restored home, a National Historic Landmark, the institution offers activities and educational programs that illuminate Twain's literary legacy and provide information about his life and times.
The house and museum at 351 Farmington Ave. are open Monday through Saturday, 9:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m., and Sunday, noon-5:30 p.m. For more information, call 860-247-0998 or visit www.marktwainhouse.org.
Programs at The Mark Twain House & Museum are made possible in part by support from theConnecticut Department of Economic and Community Development and the Greater Hartford Arts Council.