The infidel Turk, the Sultan Suleiman, had defeated the Emperor Charles of the Holy Roman Empire, and his aspirations included not only Europe as far as Spain, but Africa as well. Strongest of the forces against him was the fleet of the Admiral of the seas, Andrea Doria. Against these two and the lesser men below them as background is told the story of young Marco, bastard son of Andrea Doria's nephew, who is growing to man-hood in ignorance of his true identity, and who- when he learns it- demands the right to win the name that is his, and the lovely lady he has chosen. Here is a full-bodied picaresque novel in the Costain tradition, a genre Spinatelli showed himself fully competent to handle in The Florentine (Prentice-Hall-1953), and now, once again, uses to advantage. Here is a measure of historical fact, vigorously woven into a fast-paced adventure tale, which swings from Italy (Pisa and Genoa) to the court of Kasim Bey of the Barbary Coast, where Marco is taken as a slave. While the main steps of the story- escape, return with the Italian and Spanish forces, heroic gestures and success- all are foreordained, the means by which all is achieved provide stirring adventure for the aficionados.