Dan Kasdan is a Bay Area private eye going to seed. He's stuck on his ex-wife Priscilla and trying to do right by their son Jeff. Priscilla still sees Dan, but is obviously growing elsewhere, and she urges him to accept some high-paid tasks with Karim, an unctuous operator in a number of shady activities. Dan's only real friend is a black cop named Alfonso. The book seems to have two irreconcilable halves: the first a truly lyrical reminiscence about Dan and Priscilla's courtship, marriage, and drifting apart in the late 60s and early 70s (sort of a chick novel from a guy's point of view); the second about getting tangled up with Karim's activities. But there's no real tension or denouement: The story merely wanders thoughtfully, and offers both some terrific writing and fine portraits of various locales and social strata (particularly the scummier ones) of San Fran.
This report prepared by David Loftus