The same site says Ross Macdonald dedicated his last novel to Gault. That makes better sense. The stories have the same bitter attitude toward wealth, especially unearned, not to mention a whole lot of Chandlerian knightliness, plus compassionate description and dark, hard-boiled observation in about equal measure. We know that Puma is a knight, because he tells us in "Stolen Star" that "I was no knight." As for the rest, we get:
- "I can never find the proper comment for the wailings of the wealthy. I tried to put some sympathy into my smile."
- "She lived in a beach shack south of there, out of the high-tax area."
- "It was a clear and beautiful day, a day for loafing, but I didn't have a rich or talented wife."
- "And if I told Duffy ... who would benefit? Not Gina Pastore and not Mrs. Alan Engle. Justice might, but justice was only a word. The other two were people."
- "Money is only unimportant when you have a bank full of it."
- "You have to believe in somebody, Miss Pastore."
- "There was one suit, right out of a Fresno bargain emporium..."
- "His clothes were a bit frayed, but he wore them well."
- "Charles smiled and said nothing, as good bartenders do."
- "He had the kind of a face that looked naked without a number under it."
- Of a high-class pimp who has gone into the movie business: "If a man can afford it, buying a small studio is a fine way to keep supplied with dames."
Gault, writing these stories in the late 1950s, also peppered them with self-conscious popular culture references before the practice became widespread ("Sam reads too much Mike Hammer," "The rube sees too many movies.").