A masculine adventure novel for those who enjoyed being At Play in the Fields of the Lord, this pays marvelous attention to detail. Unfortunately the characterizations are not dealt with as thoroughly. But it's an intriguing story about a team of six scientists, oceanographers, who are stationed for fourteen months on a tiny Polynesian island. Their combined talents have to make do in the Swiss Family Robinson tradition because of ""little mistakes"" like being sent seven thousand dollars worth of paint instead of needed supplies. Then there's the native tribe they become involved with, whose members are suffering from a mysterious radiation sickness that deforms. This leads to an unusual arrangement--two members of the team are selected for their breeding possibilites. But the months pass in reasonable quiet until the ""little mistakes"" add up to final disaster. The accident and aftermath is about as horrendous a scene as has seen print. The writing is meticulous and controlled and the book should appeal.