I read this book about 1-Jan-2006. I've read this book before. The book is copyright 1976. This note was last modified Tuesday, 06-May-2014 15:30:37 PDT.
This is book 4 of the "Spenser" series.
This note contains spoilers for the book.
Fourth Spenser novel. Spenser finds a runaway wife, arranges a gun purchase for a radical feminist collective, saves a real-estate developer, and frames a major loan shark. Hawk and Susan play major roles.
And, once again, most of the time, he's not doing what he's been told. He may well be doing the best that can be done to help his clients, and they may eventually come to agree with him, but they very often don't feel that way at the time (or wouldn't if he were completely open with them).
It's fascinating the brief moments that he and Susan talk about him. Even then, he doesn't manage to say much straight out. I think his position is that expressing philosophies and positions isn't a reliable guide to how people will actually behave, and is thus not useful for much of anything.
This book as the first appearance of Hawk, and he's in his serious bad-guy roll, an enforcer for the loan shark. He and Spenser have known each other, apparently casually at a distance, for 20 years, Spenser says. But the final plan for solving all the problems counts on Hawk deciding not to kill Spenser, even though his employer and some others will be alive later to report the event.