On a little Spanish island, off the African coast, a group of vagrants and miscreants are loosely thrown in contact with the natives, the local Padre, and the Sisters of a convent dedicated to caring for some blind orphans. Among the outsiders are Snyder, a professional killer; Anna Meunier, his current mistress, unaware of his activities; Cesare, a bullfighter; and an Englishman, Loader, with only a few months to live (an inoperable cancer), trying ""to run himself to earth before the end"" comes. Snyder's assignment is a political murder; Loader's to reassess his life since he is not quite ready to ""tackle God direct"", and only after he is able to help Anna Meunier escape the aftermath of her lover's murders, is he able to meet his maker with greater serenity.... The comparison with Graham Greene (there is a slight aura of deja vu) is inevitable but not necessarily a disservice to Mr. Clifford whose concern is also with death in life and life after death within the framework of the suspense story. His own readers (Act of Mercy, etc.) will remember that he handles this medium well, with a self-generating tension and a use of decisive detail.