San Francisco has enough crime, but not enough to keep Private Investigator, Sam Spain, busy. With no investigations, Spain is concerned about paying his rent … until Mrs Kline pops in.
Spain receives a visit from this little old lady who wants him to find her twenty-two-year-old daughter, Irene, who has been missing for a month … Spain takes the case, knowing it won’t pay his rent. But the investigation takes him on a journey where his rent is the least of his concerns. Staying alive becomes a priority.
Spain starts his investigation at Irene’s place of work, the 400 Club. It’s not the kind of place he would expect to find a nice young girl, but San Francisco is a big city, and people change.
His encounter at the 400 Club leaves Spain concerned. Ambrose Muir, the manager, is notorious for making trouble. But there’s something strange about Muir and Cabot’s reaction to the knowledge Irene is missing … Spain knows they know more than they claim to.
Spain’s investigation takes him to a property where he hopes to find Irene with Hugo Dare. Dare was known to the authorities – he’s as crooked as they can make them. Spain knows Dare is behind several high-profile crimes, but with Dare looking to go into politics, he’s careful to keep his own hands clean.
Irene Kline has fallen for Dare. Innocent, she believes Dare when he says he works for the Secret Service and needs her help. But when a man is found murdered in her apartment, Spain recognises Dare’s plans. He just needs to convince the susceptible Irene.
But when Irene discovers the truth, all innocence disappears. She wants revenge. Hugo Dare will not get away with what he did to her.
Who is the murdered man? And why is Dare so eager to pin the blame on Irene?
With the investigation taking a turn for the worse, Irene and Spain fight for their lives … while Dare fights to keep his name clean. A deadly battle ensues …
Sydney J. Bounds was an English author who wrote over forty novels and scores of short stories, embracing science fiction, Westerns and detective stories. Born in November 1920 Bounds lived most of his life in Kingston upon Thames. Unmarried, he died in May 2006. His memory is honoured by the “Best Newcomer—the Sydney J. Bounds Award” given annually by the British Fantasy Society.