Commander Stafford dedicates his book ""especially for those United States submariners who man the great Polaris boats which are the free world's only absolute, unanswerable deterrent."" Most of his book is devoted to feats of war, however, as he traces the course of the ""pig boat"" from Ezra Lee's wooden egg, seven feet deep by five and a half feet side--the Revolutionary Turtle, to the redoubtable Triton on constant cruise beneath the seas. Lieutenant Otto Weddigen with his 450-ton, twenty-six man (""a puny and pitiful excuse for a man-of-war"") sank three English warships in one 1914 mission; the H.M.S. E-11 performed incredibly in the Sea of Marmara after braving the Dardanelles. In World War II, Gunther Prien took on the home fleet in a daring raid on Scapa flow; the U.S.S. Harder shook up the Japanese fleet in the Sibutu Passage. Commander Stafford records some tragedies as well as triumphs--the sinking of the U.S.S. Squalis and H.M.S. Thetis (both retrieved for further duty). Along the way he remarks on the development of the submarine and anti-submarine devices--from the great net in Marmara to depth charges, sonar and radar. Technical aspects are incorporated in a good adventure narrative, very satisfactory fare for surfaced submariners.