Another above-average nautical melodrama from the author of Paradise Smith and The Angry Ocean. Big Jim Bruce, boardroom wheelerdealer, has lost his entire fortune in divorce proceedings--so now he's back to sea in his middle forties, tasting the salt air once more as a modest (if caustic) officer aboard a failing tanker that breaks down constantly. What's more, the ship's crew is often drunk, morale is laughable, and Captain Airlee is not much better. But Bruce is happy just to have a deck rolling under him again, and when some burst pipes blow the captain overboard, Bruce is ready to take over. Unfortunately, however, the company he works for is in big trouble: an Arab dealer is out to buy Bruce's tanker (Seagas II) and is trying to destroy the company; widowed company-owner Tess Beaufort is going bankrupt. In fact, an arrest order is issued in Belgium to impound the ship--but James spunkily sails from port in heavy fog, with Tess on board. And eventually he'll straighten out Tess' paperwork, salvage a tanker thought to be blown up, save the company, and win Tess' affections. Solid seagoing collision action and convincing shipboard atmosphere, all of it enlivened with Capt. Bruce's nicely bitter wit.