When Spenser is approached by Walter Clive, president of Three Fillies Stables, to find out who is threatening his horse Hugger Mugger, he can hardly say no; he's been doing pro bono work for so long his cupboards are just about bare. Disregarding the resentment of the local law enforcement, Spenser takes the case. Though Clive has hired a separate security firm, he wants someone with Spenser's experience to supervise the operation. And Spenser can't help being intrigued by Clive's daughter, Penny - one of the Three Fillies - who has an insider's knowledge of the horse world, a deceptively charming air, and a great pair of legs herself.
Despite the veneer of civility, there are tensions beneath the surface Southern gentility. The rest of the Clive family isn't exactly thrilled with Spenser's presence, the security chief has made it clear he'll take orders from no one, and the local sheriff's deputy seems content to sit back and wait for another attack. But the case takes a deadly turn when the attacker claims a human victim, and Spenser must revise his take on the whole Three Fillies organization - and watch his own back as well.
©2000 Robert B. Parker; (P)2000 Random House, Inc.