This just misses being an important book, and its failure is hard to analyze. Perhaps others will not agree that it fails. In any case, it is worth reading -- for what it does in revealing the seamy side of a young doctor's upward rise. Doctor Morath has been sent to South American from Germany. He arrives at his post full of ideals, determined to steer clear of entangling alliances; and he discovers a cynical acceptance of the necessity for playing scientific politics within the hospital walls, and social politics outside. The story is the struggle toward compromise -- partial failure, partial success. Interesting, enlightening, disheartening. Possibly too long drawn out, and with philosophical discussions, ""full of sound and fury"" -- the story is quickly told, in half the space.