This was a book that I wanted to read for some time now. I had it on my "to-read" list and never got around to it. I was pleasantly surprised. I was in the Navy and found the book taking me back to my Navy days. The book takes place on a US Navy ship, the Caine. Ensign Willie Keith is fresh out of school and gets order for the USS Caine. Before shoving off, he meets May Wynn, a beautiful red-head
Upon arriving on the ship, and it having limited berthing for the offices and men, Willie gets assigned to the chip shack. His first skipper is De Vriess. When you start to read about De Vriess, you say, "what an A-hole" however you soon see what a real A-Hole is when Lieutenant Commander Philip Francis Queeg replaces the skipper. Lt. Commander Queeg is a real work of art. He begins to obsess over small things that should be insignificant for the time as well as being at war (e.g. Shirts tucked in).
Eventually, after many such incidents where the skipper has shown to be unstable at best, the XO relieves Lt. Commander Queeg under article 184. This eventually causes a court martial for the XO, Keefer and Willie Keith.
*** SPOILER ***
I am going to be honest, I was a little let done with the ending. I would have wanted May to be waiting for him and they live happily ever after. The other thing that bothered me a bit, was that the mutiny is one chapter.
All-in-All it was a great book and it kept me engaged throughout. The beginning is a little slow because Wouk is developing the characters, but it soon engages you and you are hooked.
I am curious about the movie now and plan to watch it.
This is what the USS Caine would have looked like, minus the rear stack(s).
Paperback: 560 pages
Publisher: Back Bay Books; Reprint edition (April 15, 1992)