Putting his Nameless Detective and his common sense on hold, Pronzini raids the endangered woman's cupboard and dredges up Angela Hollis, a gal with awful taste in husbands. Her first walked out on her and their son, and her second, David Rakubian, alternately sweet-talked and abused her. Now that she's left him, he's sworn he'll kill her if she doesn't return. As his threats escalate, Angela's dad Jack concocts a foolproof scheme to protect her: He'll murder Rakubian. When someone beats him to it, Jack, convinced the killer was Angela's hot-tempered brother Eric, hides the corpse and eliminates all traces of the murder in order to protect his son from discovery. A brief peaceful respite ends with an anonymous note on the Hollis doorstep: "What did you do with his body?" More threats to Angela follow, and Jack is so baffled about who's behind them that he hires McCone Investigations to find out. But not even the intervention of Sharon McCone's agency can prevent more threats, a parking lot kidnapping, and a sizzling confrontation in a cabin before all is serene on the Hollis homefront—so serene, in fact, that Angela is now reattaching herself to her first husband.
How many obsessive personalities and plot gimmicks can one novel crib from sources ranging from the movies D.O.A. and Rear Window to the series authored by Pronzini's wife, Marcia Muller? Not this many, unless it's angling for a spot on a Jerry Springer rerun. Unimpressive work from a usually reliable pro (Nothing But the Night, 1999, etc.).