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The Lion at Sea (1977) took us into the Royal Navy during World War I, and this sequel picks up Lieut. George Kelly Maguire with the Battle of Jutland behind him, the war winding down, on duty off northern Scotland. Several of Maguire's friends and foes reappear, including his beloved Charlotte (Charley) Upfold, whom he once more fails to marry, and the vicious, whiptongued Verschoyle, his former term mate at Dartmouth. Armistice is declared, and, on leave, Maguire at last gets Charley into her bedroom--when he's interrupted at the key moment by Verschoyle and Charley's sister Mabel. And so it's to sea, still in agony, and to Yalta to pick up several Russian grand dukes and duchesses fleeing the bloodbath of the Revolution. Then it's on to Salonika where the Greeks and Turks are warring and refugees need ferrying to Stamboul. Sent on shore duty to help White Russians escape, he quickly finds himself abed with the gorgeous, expert but soulless Vera Brasov, who needs his protection. The action crashes with flying blood as he and his companions bolt through southern Russia, where he is to escort still another party of aristocrats out of Odessa. He is about to have his head stoved in by a sledge hammer when Vera stabs its wielder, then laughs harshly and cries, ""Cheer up!"" And after Russia, it's up the Yangtze. Busy, bloody, and a-bustle with foolish gusto.

Pub Date: March 15th, 1979
ISBN: 0708907393
Publisher: Atheneum