Lackey Ferguson, part-owner of F&F Construction, a small company that hires parolees as laborers, doesn't realize he's being set up as fall-guy when Percy Hardin, from the posh side of town, invites him over to discuss building a poolhouse for his wife, Marissa, then leaves Lackey alone with her. When Marissa is raped and murdered and Percy has an airtight alibi, Lackey becomes the prime suspect--even though forensics can't match his pubic hair and semen to that found at the scene (facts that the cops, eager for a ``quick solve,'' are willing to ignore). So Lackey begins his own investigation, which leads to the death of a parolee/employee and the abduction of his fiancÇe, Nancy. Meanwhile, the killer Percy hired has his own agenda--getting Percy to pay up, which he can't do until the insurance comes through. Several gruesome deaths later, the killer is cooing over Nancy in his hide-out; Percy and his sister-in-law are arguing in bed; and Lackey is on the run from the cops and in search of Nancy.... As Gray proved in Bino and Size, he can out-tough the best of them, even Elmore Leonard. This is less complex than its predecessors, but, still, sharp, taut, and mean.