|Shout at the Devil (1976) [Novel]|
by Wilbur Smith
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Incorrigible rogue, Irish-American Flynn Patrick O'Flynn and his son-in-law Sebastian Oldsmith of impeccable English merchant background make unlikely partners as ivory poachers round the Rufiji Delta in East Africa in 1912, but prove a formidable threat to the peace of mind of Herman Fleischer, the fat German Commissioner in whose territory they make their living. Teasing Fleischer is an irresistible if dangerous sport, but it is not long before the outbreak of World War One enables the embattled sausage-eating Commissioner to take his revenge. While Flynn and Sebastian are away, he attacks and burns their homestead, and leaves among the dead Sebastian's infant daughter. Only Flynn's daughter Rosa survives - and distraught at the loss of her child she dedicates herself, her husband and father to the pursuit of bitter vengeance.
The scene moves to the war at sea off the East African coast. A crippled German battleship is forced to take cover in the Rufiji river. Now a wartime sabotage operation offers Flynn, Sebastian and Rosa the opportunity they seek for their revenge. Infiltrating an African working party, Sebastian boards the German ship and plants a time bomb. But Flynn's ever unpredictable behaviour precipitates disaster. He is discovered by Fleischer and ruthlessly and gloatingly executed by him. As a result, Rosa and Sebastian fall victim to the destruction they have planted themselves. When the bomb explodes, they are consumed alongside their German enemies.
Wilbur Smith combines the comedy of the free-booting adventurers of his two central characters with desperate scenes of action on the wide enemy-infested ocean and in the steaming heat of the African jungle, the contrives a chilling ending to a novel started in light-hearted vein. Shout at the Devil has been made into a film.
Original title: Shout at the Devil
Genre: Fiction→ Adventure→ Wild Frontiers And Exotic Lands