The latest in Griffin's Marine Corps saga (Battleground, etc.) takes his cast of aviators and intelligence types into the fall of 1942--and introduces a tough cop who joins the Corps and falls hard for the kind of girl he used to arrest. The Marines still hold their captured airfield on Guadalcanal, but the Japanese hold just about everything else. General MacArthur is still in Australia playing bridge and laying plans; Frank Knox is still Secretary of the Navy. The inaction has gotten to Captain Fleming Pickering USNR, Knox's eyes and ears at the front. Picketing wants permission to get out of uniform and back to the office, where Mrs. Pickering is running the shipping business, but Knox and FDR hand him a Marine general's hat and put him in charge of the boffins managing the nation's greatest secret--the decoding of Japanese signals. The job rates a bodyguard, a position filled by newly minted and very capable Sgt. Hart, formerly of the St. Louis police. Since the decoding pretty much runs itself, the general has time to stir up the troops to effect a rescue of their coast-watching buddies, whose existence may soon be discovered by the enemy. The enormously risky rescue effort involves Pickering's very dashing, very personable, and only son. The series gets only better. Griffin's long look at a small segment of the war is high-quality history and storytelling.