Paradine Island is a story about James Morgan, a Kansas-bred entrepreneur, and the people who follow in his footsteps. The death of his mother brings him close to his daughter, Lammy. She spends her summer holiday sailing in the Caribbean with him on his ketch, the C. M. Paradine. They meet Ricardo, an Argentine graduate of Iowa State. Ricardo and James put Lammy on a plane to resume her pre-medical courses at the University of Kansas, and together they sail to the Canary Islands. James takes pity on a teenage dance hall orphan and spirits her away from her intended sponsors. Martina learns English and many of James American ideals as they cross the Atlantic back to his home on Paradine Island. He finds her to be intelligent and falls in love with her. His business prospers. They have two boys. On a sailing holiday they are attacked by pirates. James is killed. Tina escapes with her boys and carries on the business. With the assistance of Lammy, two clever biochemists, a British attorney, and Andrew, a quarter-breed Arapaho cowboy, the company becomes an international giant with headquarters in St.Louis. Andrew, Tina's second husband, and two of their little girls are killed in the bombing of the company's properties by Mid-eastern terrorists who are encouraged by liberal political organizations. After reestablishing the company headquarters in England, Tina takes her two boys on a fishing trip into the Scottish highlands. They meet a recluse Scottish earl. The boys initiate a romance between the earl and their mother. Marrying the earl, Tina takes him for a honeymoon sail on the C.M.Paradine. They and others have a myriad of experiences in the Caribbean chasing a thief who intended to sell to terrorists the company's irreplaceable supply of a lethal material he had stolen.