Palmer's mid-19th century romance strains credibility to the limit as it gleefully cheers for dolphin intelligence and true love while emphatically booing villains and the slave trade. At 22, Nantucket Quaker Tegan Lloyd learns that a prenuptial agreement gave ownership of her five whaling vessels to her intended husband Dorian, who was reported lost at sea two years before. Dorian left the fleet to his father, Captain Maddock Cant. Determined to investigate the captain and regain her ships, Tegan, clad in boy's attire, secures a job assisting scientist Elijah Tate, sailing with Maddock to observe dolphin behavior. However Elijah, who can ``see beneath the surface,'' notices that Tegan is no lad and engages her in some very un-Quakerish lovemaking. Meanwhile, Tegan discovers suspicious goings-on: the ship's empty whale oil barrels have been dismantled and turned into bunks for transporting slaves. When Tegan lands in her inevitable scrapes, Palmer ( The Burning Plains ) sends in a rescue dolphin for scenes even less convincing than reruns from television's Flipper. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 10/31/1990 Release date: 11/01/1990 Genre: Fiction
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