RED MUTINY by John Wingate


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Mutiny aboard a Russian destroyer, as followed through Alexei Slepak's diary. But first Alexei's stormy background: abortive college romance and marriage in Leningrad (and divorce); refusal to join the Party despite high grades; love of forbidden music and visits to underground jazz joints; geographical escape from sheer depression by joining the navy, schooling as a communications officer, first missions. (Back home, Alexei's new girlfriend is a ""Christian Jew"" whose family hopes to emigrate to Israel. Maybe Alexei would like to come along?) After four years in the navy he's suddenly made second-in-command of a small Intelligence ship which is working the Mediterranean for info on NATO ships. It's a low-morale ship and getting worse, despite his efforts, and he's at odds with the captain and the ship's commissar. He's warned about his Jewish girlfriend but sees her on the sly. The ratings are going ""stir crazy""--eleven of them haven't had home leave for two years. The captain's useless, shut up in his cabin. The mutiny breaks out, the captain's shot, the other officers are taken prisoner, and the ship is bound for Brazil where it will be scuttled after the mutineers disembark. Then Alexei and the commissar are set adrift in an open boat, hating each other to the death. . . . No Caine Mutiny, but the all-Russian setting and characters are a relatively fresh, bracing wind on the sea of sea fiction.

Pub Date: June 20th, 1978
Publisher: St. Martin's