The last two years have been monstrously unpleasant for high-society journalist Gus Bailey. His propensity for gossip has finally gotten him into trouble - $11 million worth. His problems begin when he falls hook, line, and sinker for a fake story from an unreliable source and repeats it on a radio program.
As a result of his flip comments, Gus becomes embroiled in a nasty slander suit brought by Kyle Cramden, the powerful congressman he accuses of being involved in the mysterious disappearance of a young woman, and he fears it could mean the end of him.
The stress of the lawsuit makes it difficult for Gus to focus on the novel he has been contracted to write, which is based on the suspicious death of billionaire Konstantin Zacharias. It is a story that has dominated the party conversations of Manhattan's chattering classes for more than two years. The convicted murderer is behind bars, but Gus is not convinced that justice was served. There are too many unanswered questions, such as why a paranoid man who was usually accompanied by bodyguards was without protection the very night he perished in a tragic fire.
Konstantin's hot-tempered widow, Perla, is obsessed with climbing the social ladder and, as a result, she will do anything to suppress this potentially damaging story. Gus is convinced she is the only thing standing between him and the truth.
"The only person writing about high society from inside the aquarium." (Tina Brown)
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