As usual, the author provides the reader with a good yarn and snappy dialogue. This is a suspenseful mystery by a master storyteller. It is no surprise that is was made into a blockbuster film starring John Travolta in the role of Criminal Investigation Division Warrant Officer Paul Brenner, a member of the Army's elite investigative unit. Having seen the movies first, the book is as good as the movie, which was a pretty good film.
Brenner is assigned to investigate a politically sensitive case, the bizarre rape-murder of Captain Ann Campbell, a graduate of West Point, the army's poster girl, and the daughter of a legendary and highly regarded general. Brenner's assigned partner on this case turns out to be none other than his former lover, rape specialist Cynthia Sunhill. As they begin their investigation, information that does not jive with the image of the deceased keeps popping up. Moreover, they run into some stonewalling that does not sit well with Brenner. Clearly, something is wrong with the facts as originally presented. Intrigue and deception seem to be everywhere.
Brenner, however, is determined to solve the case before it is taken away from him by the FBI. He smells something fishy and he doesn't much like it. Moreover, he senses that there is something corrupt that permeates the surrounding facade of honor on that Army base, based upon what has come to light about the apparent double life Ann Campbell led. Brenner is convinced that this corruption is at the heart of Ann Campbell's murder.
Though not one of my favorite Demille books, it is still an enjoyable read. The main protagonist, Paul Brenner, is a well-fleshed character and likable. The mystery, however, seems a little forced, and the tawdriness of the life led by the deceased is depressing. Notwithstanding this, it is still a pretty good read from a master storyteller.