Marital infidelity, murder, and the threat of nuclear holocaust hangs over the heartland in the sixth installment of the popular Sam McCain mystery series. Certainly not dull is October 1962, not with Russian Premier Nikita Krushchev promising to launch Soviet nuclear weaponry from Cuba if the U.S. attempts to invade the island. For seven taut days, since the 22nd, the Kennedy White House has been facing down the Soviets with an ultimatum to dismantle their Cuban missile bases at once. Meanwhile, in Black River Falls, Iowa, private investigator Sam McCain has been dealing with a crisis of different sort. Candy Sykes is no dream client. Not only is she brassy, loud, and boorish, but she's also the daughter of McCain's longtime nemesis, the incompetent local police chief Cliffie Sykes. Nor does anyone, except Cliffie, doubt she could have killed her faithless husband. And taking no nyet for an answer, Cliffie is demanding that Sam prove him right, the town wrong, and Candy innocent. Or else.