Even without the $15,000 Christopher Prize this would rank as a psychological approach to a spy thriller. The start is slow, but as momentum gathers the reader becomes one with young Happy, a German lad who has sublime faith in the cause of freedom and who has given himself to U. S. Army Intelligence, knowing the dangers involved. His trip across southern Germany to Mannheim is thrilling and reveals that part of Germany at point of collapse; his idealism overbalances his realization of the probable cost. The inevitable and is spared its bitter futility when another completes Happy's task. Chosen from among 2,000 manuscripts submitted, this is a notable, expertly handled first novel. A good chance for a break-away from western and mystery reading.