The Dragon in the Sea
Tor, Apr 2008, $14.95
One of the five members of the Hell Diver subtug crew is a saboteur. Psychologist John Ramsay is assigned to join the team, as they steal oil from Cold War adversaries by tugging their purloined liquid black gold loot under water; his task is to uncover the identity of the traitor. He somewhat fears being well over a mile under the water while on this mission because if exposed he will be dead.
However, although he watches intently, the mission is in peril from the sabotage damage caused by one of them, but John remains unsure who he is. Soon he and three other crewmen are in trouble with no place to hide as the enemy has them in his sights. If they survive against this ruthless relentless stalker, John and the other three remain “Under Pressure” from the strength of the ocean that pounds away at their tin can. To live they must work as a team, but no one trusts anyone else as phobias bubble to surfaces of their minds.
This is a reprint of a 1956 thriller that seems timelier now than it did during the height of the Cold War with the concept of the morally superior West stealing oil from the East. The tale is about a covert operation reminiscent of the Bush invasion in which administration officials helped sell the war besides 9/11 links with the belief cheap easy access oil was around the corner once Iraq became a democracy. Although none of the crew, even the hero, seems much more than action figures, fans will appreciate Frank Herbert’s deep look at societal ethics.