MERCY ISLAND by Theodore Pratt


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Island stories seem a fragment from the past, but this one has a new slant to it. The setting is the Florida Keys, where Ramsey's pig-headedness cracks up a hired fishing boat on an apparently deserted island. But it has one inhabitant, and the crime in his past changes all their lives. Ramsey's wife, friend, and the boat's captain and boy block Ramsey's determination to use his host to further his own schemes. Personalities, emotions and ideas clash; food gives out; Ramsey demands the sacrifice of his wife's happiness as his price of surrender -- and the boy plays deus ex machina to defeat him. Good feel of life among the Keys, of strains and stresses as tropical marooning comes up against civilized veneers. Pratt can write. This has more story quality than Big Blow (1936), and the same power.

Pub Date: April 7th, 1941
Publisher: Knopf