The Ebb-tide: A Trio and Quartette
It is Tahiti in the 1890's and three men - an American sea captain, an English gentleman and a cockney thief - are 'on the beach'. Dispossessed and destitute, the 'trio' agree to sail a smallpox-infected ship loaded with champagne to Sydney, Australia, plotting to steal the cargo, scupper the vessel, and head for the 'Dangerous Archipelago'. Predictably, the thieves fall out. They lose their course and are driven towards an uncharted island which flies the red ensign. The owner of the island, also an English gentleman, has amassed a fortune in pearls. He is both a stern disciplinarian and a religious megalomaniac. As the protagonists in this 'quartette' begin to play out their parts, the plot moves to its dramatic, but ambiguous, conclusion.
Stevenson's tale of exploitation in the South Seas recreates both the period and the place through a brilliant exploration of the moral corruption of colonisation.
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NIGHT ON THE BEACH
MORNING ON THE BEACH THE THREE LETTERS
THE OLD CALABOOSE DESTINY AT THE DOOR
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