A story based on the legends of the early Polynesian migrations has two strikes against it at the start, but manages -- after a slow beginning -- to overcome both in large part. Legendary material is appealing to a somewhat specialized, though not necessarily limited, market. Legendary material told as a story within a story provides a double frame of removal from reader attention. This in the case of accounts for the very slow getting under way of a tale that finally compels attention as first rate adventure and romance. It is the story of the segment of the Tonga clan on the last phase of their centuries' long search for the Far Lands where they can pursue peaceful lives; of the uneasy terms under which they lived, subject to the overrule of the bloodthirsty war-like Koroa, of the young non of the chief, Maul, namesake of the demi-god whose mystic lure they follow- and of the Koro maiden, Hina whom he loved, of the Tonga priest, Metua, influence for good, strong in his faith in the power of love as greater than hate and fear. An unusual story, with some of the old Nordhoff and Hall island magic -- but not always easy reading.