An novel of adventure, love and seafaring from one of the finest Brazillian novelists of the twentieth century.
The sleepy Brazilian beach resort of Periperi needs a hero. As if in answer to their calll, Captain Vasco Moscosco de Aragao (newly retired) arrives and soon has the townspeople enthralled with his tales of ocean-going daring and romance.
Only his rival, Chico Pacheco, delves into the captain's past and discovers that he has never in his life sailed beyond the harbour bar. But just as Vasco is about to be unmaksked the Ita limps into port with her flag at half mast and her captain dead at the wheel. Pressed into service, Vasco goes to meet his destiny and so begins an adventure in love and seamanship that surpasses even his wildest fantasies.