"A beautiful gown, Mrs Whitney - but you will not wear it to the Little wedding. You will not attend the wedding. You will be dead."
This note, pinned to the windscreen of a rich woman's Mercedes, was the first threat against Belle Little, property tycoon, and her wealthy friends.
Having fought her way up to the highest ranks of Florida society, Belle is now undisputed 'Queen' of the The Park, a select residential community for the Miami rich - and a glittering piece of real estate owned and developed by Belle herself. Now she is looking forward to her crowning social triumph: the marriage of her adopted daughter to the son of the State governor.
But Belle's ambitions may at last be thwarted. A mysterious figure calling himself the Avenger has begun to haunt her and spread terror throughout The Park. His first victim is Margaret Whitney, wife of the building contractor who helped Belle make her millions. There are others soon to come.
Tension gorws as Belle grimly fights to preserve her power against the mysterious man in black. As move follows move in this deadly game, Stanley Morgan puts all his best-selling talent into creating a thrilling novel of revenge. Too Rich To Live is his first venture into adventure suspense. Mr Morgan now lives in Ireland.
For my Wife, Linda. With Love and Gratitude.
Although the book jacket claims this is Stan's first venture into adventure suspense - we must remember that he'd already dabbled in the adventure genre with his Michael Morgan books in the early 70's. That said, Too Rich To Live is not really in the same boat. Similar in theme to The Dark Side Of Destiny - the book deals with a child seeking revenge for the death of a parent. Belle and Elizabeth Little are thoroughly despicable characters. Ruthless social climbers embroiled in obscene wealth and inevitable political corruption. You find yourself cheering out loud when they finally get what's coming to them. A clever plot line and in amongst the seriousness Stan doesn't miss the opportunity to have at least one beautiful woman getting a right good seeing to! Lily Parker arranges a secret rendezvous behind her husband's back with pool attendant Bo Sangster (A guy who sounds remarkably like a blond, American version of our good friend Russ Tobin!) Sadly for Mrs Parker, she gets kidnapped almost immediately afterwards.
On one hand it's a straight forward suspense/revenge novel but it also doubles as a vivid account of the struggle faced by Mexican immigrants to the USA and their treatment at the hands of the wealthy.
A most satisfying read.8/10