Kelsey Deveraux who thinks himself bound for officer candidate school is instead assigned by a whim of the bureaucracy
to the destroyer USS Caron. Then he is sent to Guadalcanal
where the Caron is hit and crippled. The Caron's engine's are knocked out and it is forced to ride the ocean current to Australia.
Meanwhile Deveraux is put through a classic "coming of age aboard ship". He is bullied by one Chief (Ruddy), he is befriended by a mechanic Jesse Woodham. And he is taught by the distant but benevolent captain how to be a good sailor.
This is a typical fifties teenage war-story of the type written by Robb White. It is well written and entertaining. It is probably more idealistic then cynic, but it is not so idealistic that one can quite accuse it of saying War Is Glorious
. At least if it does it doesn't say "war is fun" in any case.
Tropes in this work: