I had already had the pleasure of reading a Dortmunder story, so decided to go back to this, the first in the series. Westlake's writing is excellent, his charcters are real and interesting, the plotting is wonderful. He brings all of the story lines together expertly. Then there's the humour, maybe the best part of all. Westlake is a joy to read - wish I had discovered him sooner! I encourage anyone who likes good writing, good stories, all laced with a unique brand of humour - read Westlake!