Grandiose adventure plus a smidgin of ecology--a lively Smith-formula item in the loner-against-Big-Business tradition. Nicholas Berg, the once legendary head of Christy Marine, has lost his big shipping company, along with wife Chantelle and son Peter, to his nemesis--Duncan Alexander; Nick's been left with only two towing and salvage ships to call his own, plus several million in debts. Then, when a Christy Marine cruise liner sends a distress call from a subzero storm in Antarctica, Nick gambles all, leaves a sure cargo waiting, and races to the scene with his salvage tug Warlock in hopes of hitting up his old company for millions in salvage fees. The cruise ship is abandoned and landlocked when Nick finds it, but he dives into the frigid seas to save a lone passenger who is drowning--and this turns out to be sexy marine biologist Dr. Samantha Silver, who is instantly smitten by her savior. Nick does get his salvage money from Christy Marine, but meanwhile evil Duncan has put the entire company at risk to underwrite a jerrybuilt new supertanker to haul cadmium-rich crude oil; if there is any accident, the cadmium will fatally pollute the sea. And Samantha (who's going hot and heavy with Nick now), heads an ecology gang that plans to throw itself in front of the new supertanker. Ultimately, however, the tanker is swept into a hurricane, and Nick's salvage ships must go to the rescue before the cadmium spills. . . . Passion and high-life glitter in great gobs, but it's the flooding action-melodrama that really counts here--with strong appeal to fans of Smith's previous outdoors adventures.