One For The Road by Robert Dietrich
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The first third of the book employs a familiar noir theme, an irresistible drifter scamming a beautiful rich widow, nothing too original although well written and interesting enough. The next third has a Las Vegas hooker falling for him while he blows his big score gambling. Seemed like pointless filler in the grand scheme – again well written and interesting. This sets the stage for the final third, again a familiar noir theme with with our charismatic drifter seducing a young heiress and plotting to kill her rich husband. This was the best part of the book, clever scheming and tension as plans go awry and need to be reconfigured, crackling dialog, steamy sex, and a nice twist at the end. Turned out to be a fine book, not too original but nicely written and well executed. I liked it enough to award it four stars.
Available in the Best Pulp Noir Super Pack from Cutting Edge Books