Books: Watery Grave

THE DAY OF THE DOLPHIN by Robert Merle. 320 pages. Simon and Schuster. $5.95. Translated from the French by Helen Weaver.

The perilously heavy burden of this thriller is that two dolphins have been taught to speak and read English. They are tricked by orgspooks of a U.S. in telligence agency into blowing up an American warship in order to goad the country into starting World War III. The dolphins, friendly and lovable Beasts, are deeply hurt when they learn of the deception, and conclude that human beings are not worth much.

On the evidence given in the novel, this judgment of...

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