Its a lulu, its a honey, its a good book
—San Francisco Chronicle
Death and Taxes
George MacLeod had a bankroll, a good-looking brunette wife, and a weakness for blondes. He was reputed to be one of the best tax men in San Francisco, and people of means paid him substantial fees to pare their income down as far as they would go without giving the G-men an opportunity to talk about fraud. George was smart enough to keep business and pleasure apart; he did pretty well in both fields until he got involved with a girl who had yellow hair and tax troubles. The combination was fatal to him.
Death and Taxes, Chapter 1Summary
San Francisco tax accountant James Whit Whitney is summoned home from a vacation in Santa Cruz to help his partner, George MacLeod, recover a hefty tax refund for a beautiful blonde client named Marian Wolff. When he returns to his office, Whit finds MacLeod dead in the firms vault, with a small hole in the bridge of his nose. In order to complete the tax return and uncover the murderer, Whit becomes a reluctant detective and nearly gets himself killed in the process. To prevent Whits murder, if possible, the SFPD assigns him a bodyguard named Swede Larson. Whit and Swede tangle with ex-bootleggers and Telegraph Hill gangsters in their efforts to unravel the mystery, which climaxes with a shootout in the Mission District and a dramatic car chase across the Bay Bridge. Along the way, Whit resists the advances of Marian Wolff and begins a romance with Kitty MacLeod, Georges widow.
Before becoming a novelist, David Dodge worked as a Certified Public Accountant and, since you write about what you know, his first fictional hero was also a tax man. A notable aspect of the Whitney novels is the volume of information about taxes and finances that Dodge effortlessly weaves into his plots.
J. Dabney Dwight
Peter G. Hemingway
| S.G. Putnam
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