A British destroyer and a German U-boat, each captained by dangerously flawed men, fight to a standstill in another first-rate WW II adventure by the author of Ninety Feet to the Sun and The Gemini Plot. Good lower-deck portraits and plots keep this naval thriller buoyant and assure that the action never lets up as two ambitious, capable, and inhumane officers steam their way through the war years until they finally meet in the eastern Atlantic. Kapitan Leutnant Wagner's career should have taken off like a shot. As the war opened, the perfect Aryan officer with the impeccable credentials managed even to catch the Fuhrer's attention. But his boats' crews invariably catch what the Fuhrer cannot see--that Wagner's ignorance of human motives and his intolerance of human frailties are as dangerous to his command as any British depth charge--and they are not surprised that the later years of the war find Wagner on the fringes of action in command of an undignified supply boat. Lieutenant Commander Edmund Hockney is nearly as great a danger to the British destroyers he commands and for the much the same reasons. Those same flaws cripple the two captains when at last they meet for a shootout somewhere west of the Azores. Collenette continues to provide some of the very best naval action around. No bluster, no flag-waving hokum, just real people in real action on a real sea.