MARACAIBO by Sterling Silliphant


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The oil wells of Lake Maracaibo background the impetuous behavior of Pulitzer Prize poet, Laura Kingsley, who finds in Vic Scott, an expert in fighting oil fires, the reason to come out of her ivory tower. She follows him from Havana to Maracaibo when Barroso #7 blows out and he is called to save Pietro Orlando's liquid wealth. Orlando, a deaf mute, is about to marry Ellen Hope, once a call girl and once Vic's wife, who will then have achieved her goal of money. But Vic's appeal is too strong and Ellen is ready to fight Laura for him. Vic's first attempts to stop the blaze fail; a hurricane is heading their way and Vic, racing to beat the gale, dynamites from underwater -- and vanishes. Laura plays a hunch, Vic is found; Orlando is anxious to forgive and reclaim Ellen -- and the blaze is over. A vivid overlay of this Venezuelan Klondike and the threat of a holocaust keep this on its toes.

Pub Date: Feb. 21st, 1955
Publisher: Farrar, Straus & Young