Out of the Sea by Don Smith
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
A hard-boiled seafaring adventure tale telling the story of Brian Hart, a WW2 vet who finds a lucrative and exciting career as a smuggler in the Spanish Mediterranean after coming back from the war - very dangerous and highly illegal work. Hart navigates through storms, naval police raids, beatings, and double crosses while trying to keep his hot-blooded Spanish girlfriend satisfied, especially after her father is murdered and she blames him. Of course Hart has to find the murderer, an investigation requiring infiltrating some very unsavory smugglers and criminals, and then some cat-and-mouse action when he is accused of being a communist on top of a smuggler and pretty much everyone is out to get him. Adventure novels on the high seas appeal to me and this is a terrific one, with lots of fascinating details of post-war Mediterranean smuggling routes and locations, mostly Tangier to Mallorca, inspiring me to read up on these locations which I previously knew nothing about. This novel is one of the few Giant Fawcett Gold Medal books that the publisher released under the Red Seal imprint for their longer books, this one is 264 pages, and unfortunately long out of print.