Russia's new ballistic missile submarine, Yuriy Dolgorukiy, is being deployed on its first patrol while America's newest fast attack submarine, North Dakota, is assigned to trail it and collect intel. As the Russian submarine heads under the polar ice cap, its sonar readings reveal the trailing American sub and cause the Russians to begin a radical, evasive maneuver. This, however, fails and the submarines collide, resulting in damage that sends both to the bottom.
The Americans immediately set up a rescue mission, sending a new submarine and a SEAL team to establish an ice camp---Ice Station Nautilus---and stage a rescue. The Russians also send men and material, ostensibly to rescue their own men, but the Russian Special Forces team is also there to take the American base camp and the American sub, leaving no survivors or traces of their actions. As the men in North Dakota struggle to survive, the SEAL team battles for possession of the submarine.
Rick Campbell's Ice Station Nautilus is an epic battle above and below the ice, Special Forces against SEALs, submarine against submarine, with survival on the line.
In the tense opening of Campbell's third thriller featuring American national security adviser Christine O'Connor (after 2015's Empire Rising), the Russians are refusing to allow their new Borei class of submarines to be covered by a nuclear arms treaty being negotiated with Washington. In Moscow, Christine gets nowhere in her meeting with Russian president Yuri Kalinin, who tells her unequivocally that Americans will never set foot on a Borei to inspect it. Against this diplomatic backdrop, things under the ocean come to a head when one of the Borei subs, the Yury Dolgoruky, collides with an American sub, the USS North Dakota, under the North Pole. With the crews of both vessels in dire straits, the U.S. launches a desperate rescue mission. The plot becomes less credible as it progresses, undercutting the suspense. Still, Tom Clancy fans willing to accept Christine as an active field operator in the mode of Jack Ryan should be satisfied. Others may disapprove of the way she uses her feminine wiles in desperate situations.
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One Great Read
Truly enjoyed this book.