A Book Spy Review: ‘The Gray Ghost’ by Clive Cussler and Robin Burcell

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The Gray GhostSam and Remi Fargo risk everything to find a legendary automobile in this exciting new novel (the 10th in the series) from Clive Cussler and Robin Burcell.

This time out, the Fargos are in search of an extremely rare automobile with a killer history after a mysterious man claiming to be British royalty goes through Sam’s mother to arrange a meeting in Pebble Beach. The car, an early Rolls-Royce prototype nicknamed the Gray Ghost, was first developed by Charles Rolls and Henry Royce back in 1906. It was stolen that same year in Manchester, the first theft in what would become a long history of being passed around by thieves from generation to generation. 

Rumors suggest the car, which was last seen just after World War II, may now contain treasure, making the Gray Ghost even more valuable if one can, in fact, finally track it down. 

Eventually, Sam and Remi discover that the great American detective Isaac Bell (of the Van Doren Detective Agency) once worked the case back in the day when a man named Marcus Peyton was accused of stealing the Gray Ghost. Bell happened to be in England tracking criminals who’d been targeting train cars and is said to have actually located the Rolls-Royce, though it’s long been passed around since then. Now, it’s a relative of Peyton’s who seeks the Fargos’ help, hoping the duo can clear his grandfather’s name and, in the process, find the car that could be worth up to $50 million. . . or maybe even quadruple that price tag if the chest of rumored 1906 gold sovereigns really was stashed in the car.  

As the treasure-hunting couple heads off to England in search of the Gray Ghost, they quickly find out that they’re hardly the only people looking for the car. Another group has their eye on the prize too, and they’re willing to do whatever it takes in order to bring home the Rolls-Royce. . . and the treasure. 

Cussler and Burcell knocked this one out of the park. The Gray Ghost is a thrilling adventure novel with tons of action and a deep, vibrant cast of characters. The pacing is quick and their writing is sharp, rarely giving readers a moment to stop and catch their breath. The fact that Isaac Bell is mentioned and tied into things made phenomenal use of Cussler’s vast universe, and might be just enough to hold readers over until his next full-length book, which hasn’t yet been announced. Cussler works with plenty of talented co-authors, but none better than Robin Burcell who, since teaming up with him for Pirate (2016), has helped make this arguably Cussler’s best franchise still going.

Burcell brings a ton to the table, and it’s hard to imagine her and Cussler coming up with and executing a better story than this one. Think National Treasure on steroids. . . The Gray Ghost is everything you want in an adventure novel and then some. 

Book Details

Author: Clive Cussler and Robin Burcell
Series: Fargo #10
Pages: 400 (Hardcover)
ISBN: 0735218730
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Release Date: May 29, 2018
Book Spy Rating: 8.0/10

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Praised as “one of today’s finest book reviewers” by New York Times bestselling author Gayle Lynds, Ryan Steck (“The Godfather of the thriller genre” — Ben Coes) has “quickly established himself as the authority on mysteries and thrillers” (Author A.J. Tata). He currently lives in Southwest Michigan with his wife and their six children.

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