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Publisher's Summary

William Dietrich is back with another fast-paced new adventure - one that brings together Norse mythology, the American wilderness, and a swashbuckling explorer.

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.

©2009 William Dietrich (P)2009 HarperCollins Publishers

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Gage is good

If you could sum up The Dakota Cipher in three words, what would they be?

The series is fun. It has some history lessons. It has some facts. It has some fantasy. It has some outlandish characters that are just plain fun.Is this a story/series that will win a Pulitzer? No!Can you have fun listening to this book? Yes!

Which character – as performed by William Dufris – was your favorite?

Gage is the best. He is fun. He is a cad and a goofball. He knows this and just goes with it. You just have to love him.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Not the best in the series but the best performed

William Dietrich captures the large scale of North America in the early 19th century. His villains are ruthless indians and British nobleman + half sister. The sex scenes are not over done and possibly a little wishful thinking but it's fiction. William Dufris is excellent at performing the narration. He is the best thus far and even made the women sound realistic. Napoleon, well the last two narrators (Napoleon's Pyramids & Rosetta Key) made him more real, but lets not get picky.
Good fun action book even though there is some slow parts and the end ties up too neatly for my liking. Meeting famous people makes it a little too Forest Gump or Flashman without the humour or twist of fate.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Oz
  • 12-23-12

A rather entertaining adventure

I downloaded this book looking for good ol' adventure story based in a previous age. The Dakota Cipher is an entertaining story with a legend of a hero, Ethan Gage, a man after as much treasure and as many women as he can, and ultimately a coward with a supersized ego.



This book is full of great characters and exciting ordeals, as Ethan is forced out of his comforts to search for a treasure he doesnt believe exists. It is well written and nicely read, though Dufris starts with a slightly anoying snobish accent, and ends up more down to earth, though I think this works well with the arch of the story and character.



One thing to mention is that this is the third Ethan Gage novel in the series, which i didnt realise until part way through when a word about a previous adventure was mentioned. However, this book works well as a stand alone book, you get a full picture of the main characters and are thrown into a great story, prior knowledge not needed.



This book has made me want to go back and listen to the rest of the series. A very enjoyable listen.