Actually, we love Herman Wouk, who passed last month at the age of 103, and was best known for his historical novels The Winds of War and War and Remembrance. However, his most entertaining novel, and a departure from his usual subject matter, was Don’t Stop the Carnival.
Don't Stop the Carnival revolves around the lead character of Norman Paperman. He is the middle-aged New York City press agent who leaves the noise and safety of the big city and runs away to a (fictional) Caribbean island to redeem and reinvent himself as a hotel keeper. The result is a satirical tale of tropical disaster. *
This book is said to be loosely based on Herman Wouk's experiences in managing an actual hotel, the Royal Mail Inn, in the early 1960s in Saint Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. The hotel was on Hassel Island, located in Charlotte Amalie Harbour. *
The novel was turned into a short-lived musical and later, album by Jimmy Buffett in 1997. Buffett refers to the development of the musical in his memoir of an aeronautical circumnavigation of the Caribbean shortly after his fiftieth birthday, A Pirate Looks at Fifty.*
Don’t Stop the Carnival is a good light hearted story and should be required reading for all prospective Caribbean bound entrepreneurs and mid-forties men.