In the mountain resort town of South Lake Tahoe, Nina Reilly is known for taking on the underdog cases, the kind that can make - or break - her one-woman law practice. Her latest case begins in the middle of a summer night when she is called away from a very personal visit to her investigator Paul Van Wagoner's hotel room to meet with a desperate new client at her office. The frightened young Washoe Indian woman gives her name as Jessie Potter. She has just hit one of the biggest jackpots in Nevada history, and the men in suits are waiting to hand her the million-dollar first installment when they know her real identity.
With time running out, Nina helps her client devise a brilliant plan to collect the money while keeping her true identity a secret. The check's due to clear in 10 days-and Nina's got her hands full as powerful interests line up to grab the money. The Nevada Gaming Control Board is looking into allegations that the jackpot was rigged. The man sitting on the seat just before the jackpot hit says it's his, and he doesn't mind going outside the law to get it. And the wealthy man stalking Nina's client has managed to attack the jackpot winnings with the help of an unscrupulous local lawyer, Jeff Riesner, using a legal maneuver called a writ of execution. To fight it, Paul Van Wagoner flies to Hawaii and digs up a dark moment in Jessie's past. The odds of Jessie ever collecting are starting to look hopeless.
For Nina, what began as a fight for an underdog in federal court soon escalates into something very different and far more dangerous. Jessie has a secret, and she needs that money for a very good reason. By the time Nina discovers that Jessie is withholding vital information, it might be too late ...
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"Terrific . . . will keep you turning the pages into the night" (USA Today)
"A real puzzler. . with twists diabolical enough to take to court" (The New York Times Book Review)
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