Hoagy takes up his pen to defend a friend who's done the indefensible Stewart Hoag has quit ghostwriting. Living in Connecticut with his ex-wife, Hoagy works on a novel and tends to Tracy, his brand-new daughter, who's more beautiful than anything he's ever written and only took nine months to make. Life is peaceful, until Thor Gibbs arrives to tear it apart. An unapologetically swaggering author, Thor is past seventy but still looks like the brash young man who befriended an aging Hemingway and inspired the first of the Beat poets. Once he was Hoagy's mentor, but now he needs his help. Thor is in the middle of a tryst with his eighteen-year-old stepdaughter, and every newspaper, lawyer, and cop in the country wants him strung up from the highest tree. He hires Hoagy to help the beautiful young woman tell their side of the story. But trouble is following the controversial couple, and death is about to visit the cottage.