Synopsis: After the mission on the Riviera, Matt asks for some time off for a vacation in Hawaii. Naturally, Mac grants his request since there's secret-agent stuff that needs to be done around Hawaii and Matt is just the secret-agent for the job. Matt encounters his old and hated associate, code-name Monk, and learns that Monk has joined the enemy in a venture to turn the Vietnam war into World War III. But, with some luck, the ruthless Eric once again saves the day.

The Players:
  • Monk, Mac's man in Hawaii, more or less in charge of all operations in the Pacific. However, he has joined forces with a Russian agent, Irina, and plans to force the U.S. to take on China. Matt Helm eventually wraps him in chains and drops him over the side of a boat.
  • Irina, Russian agent, working with Monk. She is last seen dropping off of some water skis in the water off Honolulu. Body not recovered, so we can assume she may turn up again sometime.
  • Mr. Soo, Chinese agent, who helps Matt get free to go after Monk. He survives to show up again sometime, too.
  • Isobel McLain (nee Marner). She was Claire's sister-in-law, trying to get Helm to relinquish an inheritance from Claire. Isobel is shot by Irina, but survives.

Scorecard:
Amorous conquests: Isobal McLain, who survives; Irina, who may or may not have. Isobel calls Matt "darling." Irina calls Monk "darling."

Dead: Seven (Naguki, one of Mac's men, killed by Monk; Francis and Rog, two men duped by Irina, killed by Hanohano; Mr. Soo's colleague, killed by Irina; and Pressman and Hanohano, two of Monk's men, and Monk himself, killed by Helm)

Injuries to Matt Helm: None serious--he was whacked on the head with a gun butt by Irina, and caught some shrapnel from an exploding pistol, but didn't require hospitalization for any of that. However, he contracted dysentery that laid him up for a couple of weeks.

Quote: He was kneeling there by the jeep, covering his wounds with his big brown hands, looking up at me accusingly while the blood oozed between his fingers. He licked his lips. "You...tricked me, haole!"
     It was no time to apologize. I said harshly, "I'm a pro, kanaka. I don't fight for pleasure, just for keeps."
     Then the message got through to his brain at last, and his face changed, and he pitched forward in the dirt of the cane field. I waited a little while, as you do, and checked his pulse cautiously, and couldn't find it.

Conclusion: With Eric's intervention into Monk's plan, the Vietnam war continued to its somewhat indefinite conclusion, and the cold war continued, creating lots of opportunity for Matt Helm to stay gainfully employed, as in . . .
         

Matt Helm ™ is the property of Donald Hamilton.
and is a Trademark of Integute AB
This independent reference to, and appreciation of, the Matt Helm book series
is copyright 1998-2012 - Don Winans
Originally posted in June 1998 - Last Modified 22 July 2000
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