Rumsey's patented set-up--a boy facing danger with aplomb--is overextended in this atmospheric hurricane watch. Twelve-year-old Morgan, collecting crab pots in a South Carolina marsh, is stranded when an expected storm arrives early. Alone in a boat with his dog Tater, he is ostensibly unprepared and, initially, more concerned with parental opinion--the pots, the motor--than survival. As the winds and rain increase, Morgan's predicament is compounded by tidal changes and Tater's friskiness. But while the stormy scene is creditable and the boy's preoccupations apt, the stockpiling of calamity escalates unbelievably: cast up on a hammock as the storm center passes, Morgan protects not just Tater but a passing raccoon as well. And at the close, threatened by a swamp rattler, he shoots his flare pistol, simultaneously decapitating the snake and signalling a rescue plane. Accompanied by unusually ineffective illustrations, a story of stiff-lipped resourcefulness all the way to that unlikely parting shot.