This is a Travis McGee Novel. There is nobody...I repeat, nobody who writes like John D. MacDonald, who honed his craft through many years of writing for pulp detective magazines. He knows how to turn a phrase - in fact I own all of the Travis McGee books and I reread them about once a year - in order of publishing dates. This allows me to appreciate again the evolution of McGee and his innate ability to draw a character. His villains are drawn particularly well. He has the ability to show the reader the difference between a desperate person gone bad and a truly evil person. None of his villains are the same - but they are all fascinating character studies.
As an aspiring writer, I appreciate his talent. I have a vivid memory of many passages in his books - this one in particular. What happens to a beautiful woman is haunting and the true evil of the perpetrator is unforgettable.
With an introduction by Carl Hiaasen, also a mystery writer with a Florida setting, and a post-script by MacDonald's son, this Travis McGee novel has McGee trying to salvage the fortune and life of a friend who's short lived marriage has changed his life forever.