PI Mike Hammer runs into a red-headed prostitute in a bar. He’s not interested in her professional services, so he buys her a coffee and chats to her for a while. Tired, drained, he just wants someone to talk to, and she’s a willing listener. He’s just got paid, and in a fit of generosity he offers her enough money to buy some decent clothes and get a regular job.
No big deal, except that the next day the streetwalker turns up dead. It’s none of Hammer’s business, but all the injustice of the world is suddenly crystallised in this one senseless death. And then Hammer begins to realise that the death, supposedly a hit-and-run accident, doesn’t add up. It’s starting to look like murder.
But it doesn’t stop there. The trail leads Hammer into a world of vice, corruption and violence . . .