Phillip Lanahan drove to Vegas in his 1985 Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet, a snappy little red car his parents had given him two months before, when he graduated from Princeton. His stepfather bought the car secondhand because he abhorred the notion of depreciation. Better that the original owner take that hit. The car was in pristine condition, with 15,000 miles on the odometer, a black leather interior, fully accessorized, with four brand-new tires. The car could jump from 0 to 60 in 5.4 seconds.
With the top down, he hugged the coastline and then continued traveling east through Los Angeles on the 10. From the 10 he picked up the 15, which took him straight into Vegas. The sun was harsh and the wind whipped his hair to a wild tangle of black. At the age of twenty-three, he knew he was good-looking and he carried the knowledge like a rabbit’s foot for luck. His face was lean, clean-shaven; his dark eyebrows straight; ears tucked close to his head. He wore jeans and a short-sleeve black polo shirt. His white linen sport coat lay folded beside him on the passenger’s seat. In his duffel he had ten grand in hundred-dollar bills, compliments of a loan shark he’d recently met.
This was his third trip to Vegas in as many weeks. The first time, he’d played poker at Caesars Palace, which, though vulgar and overblown, had everything you’d ever want in one sprawling complex. That trip had been magical. He could do no wrong. The cards fell into place, one hand after another. He read his opponents, picking up tells so subtle he felt psychic. He’d driven to Vegas with three thousand dollars he’d pulled from a savings account and he’d run it up to eight with no sweat.
The second trip had started out well but then he lost his nerve. He’d returned to Caesars, thinking the same gut-level instincts would come into play, but his reads were off, the cards wouldn’t come, and he couldn’t regain ground. He left the casino a miserable five grand down. Thus the meeting with the loan shark, Lorenzo Dante, who (according to Phillip’s friend Eric) referred to himself as a “financier.” Phillip assumed the term was meant tongue-in-cheek.
He’d been uneasy about the appointment. In addition to Eric’s filling him in on Dante’s sordid past, he’d assured Phillip the exorbitant fees for the loan were what he called “industry” standard. Phillip’s stepfather had drilled into him the need to negotiate all monetary matters, and Phillip knew he’d have to tackle the issue before he and Dante came to an agreement. He couldn’t tell his parents what he was up to, but he did appreciate his stepfather’s counsel in absentia. He didn’t like the man much, though he had to admit he admired him.
Copyright © 2011 by Sue Grafton
To find out whether a woman leapt off a bridge or was pushed, Kinsey Millhone gets caught in a ruthless spider’s web....
Large Print Hardcover Book : 816 pages
Publisher: Putnam Pub Group/ Mbr of Penguin Putnam ( November 14, 2011 )
Item #: 13-487146
Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.25 x 1.3inches
Product Weight: 28.0 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
I've read several of her "alphabet" books and thoroughly enjoyed this one. I really would like Miss Grafton to have a continuation novel about Dante and Nora. He was a soft-hearted, kind "gangster" and I fell in love with him. They made a good couple. Patiently waiting for "W".
Great Stor. Interesting that recently President Clinton said
Grafton is one of his favorite authors.
I always look forward to Sue's books, but I felt this wasn't one of her best efforts. Was a little hard to follow. I still look forward to her next offering.
so.....I guess I gotta finish them all. A little slow in places but good finish.
Love her books but found this one a little slow at the start.
Reviewer: Reba K