|Signet - October 1971|
It all kicks off when Wheeler responds to a beach house where the dead body of a beautiful young woman is discovered by a hysterical chick named Stephanie Channing. Stephanie claims to have no idea who the dead girl is. Stephanie was supposed to meet the owner of the cabin, a dude named Chuck Henry, who was to give her the keys to the place for the weekend. Stephanie immediately informs Wheeler that she's a foundation member of W.H.O.R.E., which provides Wheeler the opportunity to observe that she doesn't look like a lesbian! So yeah, it's that kind of a book. And Wheeler gets his fair share of crap from every member of W.H.O.R.E. he runs into throughout the novel. All of them are drop-dead hot, and all of them waste no time in calling Wheeler a pig. And all Wheeler can do is make cracks about none of them wearing a bra.
Well, as Stephanie is explaining how she came to find the body of the dead girl in the beach cabin, all of a sudden two gun-wielding goons show up wearing paper mache Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck masks. They put the drop on Wheeler and Stephanie and abscond with the body of the dead girl and a very much alive Stephanie after slugging Wheeling. From there on Wheeler has his hands full trying to convince his superiors at the Sheriff's office that a dead girl was whisked away by Mickey Mouse along with his only witness, a women's libber member of W.H.O.R.E. Just another routine case.
It's a goofy caper, and full of politically incorrect jabs at women throughout. I guess there is some turnabout in that Wheeler gets teased and tormented and made a fool of by just about every member of W.H.O.R.E. he comes across. Mind you, this is usually after they disrobe for him in the process. In the end, all of the loose ends get wrapped up, of course, and Wheeler gets the last quip.
These books are routinely entertaining and mindless romps with plenty of titillation and PG humor. This one is a standard Carter Brown novel in that regard, and I'll have forgotten the plot in a week. But a great cover anyway!