"One Good Deed" (Grand Central Publishing), by David Baldacci
Aloysius Archer fought in Europe for the Allies, and shortly after making his way back home, he found himself imprisoned for a crime he didn't commit. He's released early for good behavior and makes his way to the small town of Poca City, where he's required to routinely check in with his parole officer.
Archer meets Hank Pittleman, who offers him a chance to earn some money. Lucas Tuttle borrowed a substantial amount of money from Pittleman, and Archer is asked to take possession of Tuttle's Cadillac, which was used for collateral. After verifying the loan by seeing the paperwork, Archer goes to meet Tuttle to ask why he hasn't paid Pittleman back. The answer Archer receives surprises him — and puts the offer in an entirely new light.
Archer wants to do the right thing, and stay away from violating the rules he needs to follow as a man recently incarcerated. His parole officer is stern and a stickler for making sure everything he does is on the straight and narrow. When he gets entangled in a mess with what seems like a simple loan, chaos and mystery will have him once again trying to prove his innocence.
Author David Baldacci is a master storyteller, and he invokes the classic feel of the post-war 1940s evident in the timeless literature and film of that time. A sympathetic hero and a cast of mysterious citizens in a small town summon familiar themes one expects in a Baldacci novel, and he once again doesn't disappoint.