CT Author Justin Scott Collaborates With Clive Cussler On Isaac Bell Novels

Several times a year a new Clive Cussler book is released, followed by a full-page ad in the New York Times and then a speedy trip to the top of the best-sellers list.

The books, with their action-packed cover illustrations, appear like clockwork: whether they be from the Dirk Pitt series or those about action heroes such as Kurt Austin or Sam and Remi Fargo.

If it's March, it must be time for a new Isaac Bell novel. That series centers on the dashing turn-of-the-century detective who solves mysteries, finds killers and, in the latest novel "The Cutthroat," even catches Jack the Ripper.

The Isaac Bell series began with "The Chaser," but since then all the other novels have had another name after Cussler's on the cover: Justin Scott.

From his cozy, book-lined study off his kitchen in his spacious home in Newtown, Scott, 71, collaborates with Cussler, now 85 and living in Scottsdale, Ariz. Together, they've formed an efficient, creative and lucrative partnership.

When asked why he chose Scott to be his latest collaborator, Cussler is as succinct as his prose. "It was his writing."

Scott has authored more than two dozen novels of his own, sometimes writing under the pseudonyms Paul Garrison, J.S. Blazer and Alexander Cole. His books take the form of thrillers and sea-story novels, including his best-selling novel "The Shipkiller."

In 2007, Scott was asked by Cussler's agent if he would be interested in collaborating with the author on the second Isaac Bell novel, "The Wrecker," in what was to become a new book franchise.