At the turn of the century, a Kwakiutl warrior from British Columbia's wild northern islands raids an artifact collector's yacht to reclaim stolen sacred masks. He takes the collector's wife, Kate, as hostage on his 200-mile canoe voyage home. The collector hires Dugger, a coastal trader living on the edges of the law, to give chase in his ketch with the collector as passenger, but Dugger's financial salvation comes at a terrible price, for he is Kate's secret lover. Day and night Dugger sails the uncharted islands, through raging currents and ship-swallowing whirlpools, and the account of his pursuit is interwoven with Kate's harrowing and erotically charged journey. Based on a true story, this novel reaches its thrilling climax at the last secret, hallucinatory potlatch of the ancient Kwakiutl culture, where the history of a doomed people is melded with the fury of three hearts.