THE CRYSTAL STAR by Ellen Argo

THE CRYSTAL STAR

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Keep away from men who go down to the sea in ships if Stephen Logan, hero of this interminable Cape Cod saga, is any example: he spends all of his time (1842-1850) in either jealous sulks or infantile rages. Long-suffering wife Julia, her mind perhaps unhinged by her sad adventures in the preceding, less waterlogged volume Jewel of the Sea (1977), takes it all as a compliment--even when he is jealous of her stalwart old shipbuilding dad; even when he wants to ditch his child, Clara, and take Julia aboard and away. Is this selfish clod a romantic lead worth following to the ends of the earth, specifically Tahiti, China, and points east, peddling opium all the way? Not really, but then spunky Julia has always wanted to go to sea, even if it means resisting nautical rapists and weathering childbirth in a berth. When her pa has a stroke and Clara is ailing, however, Julia must stay ashore to tend the shipyard while Stephen sails off in full sulk, which is a great relief to some of us but not to a heroine who doesn't know when she's well off. Yo ho-hum--with still another volume ahead for the loyal port-to-starboard audience.

Pub Date: Feb. 2nd, 1978
Publisher: Putnam