I was hooked from the start by private detective Max Castillo, who narrators the story with self-depreciating humor and charm. The reader learns more of Max's personal demons---alcohol, gambling, and a loss of faith which had expelled Max from his life as a priest whose mission had been to help troubled youth. While struggling through his own need for healing, Max takes on a murder case of particular interest for his former colleagues from the Church. The case grows more interesting as Max begins to unravel to a point where his friends recognize the impending train wreck. All the while, Max struggles to reconcile his kind, gentle nature which must have made him an effective priest with the qualities required to navigate the darker world of gangsters and other troubled souls. The strong character voice and my curiosity through out this well-told who-done-it made reading this novel a pleasure.