Ben and Carrie Porter, first introduced in Under the Influence (1989), venture forth from their small home-based Connecticut publishing concern to the glamorous Riviera to see whether they can snag the rights to the late Charles Melton's last novel. But the problem is that Charles has willed various chapters to a slew of heirs--including his agent, his secretary, his cousin, and a chum or two. Will the bickering heirs come to an amicable agreement so that the work can be published? Of course not; in fact, someone steals the secretary's chapters; Charles's lover, whom he abused terribly, is killed; and, worse, there are Clues to Terrible Secrets hidden within the manuscript itself. Was Charles killed to keep the book from ever appearing? While Carrie writes in her journal and Ben mulls over bits and pieces of the manuscript, the heirs coo, simper, and snipe at one another. Finally, Ben deciphers the book's code (the reader is way ahead of him), all the pages are put back together, and the culprit goes mad. Gratingly arch, with stereotyped characters and silly, ever-so-campy dialogue. And the excerpts from Melton's ""final and most brilliant novel"" are overwritten mush.