Miami, Didion's 1987 nonfiction work, explored the intricacies of a city whose population, by the late 1980s, was 56 percent Cuban. The ripples stirred by Miami's volatile mix, Didion argued, reverberated throughout the United States, especially its government. The book is among Didion's most critically discussed, and incited passionate political debate. A writer for Magill Book Reviews, argued that "by concentrating so heavily on the Cuban exiles in Miami, Didion provides only a partial portrait of a complex city."
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Published in 1996, the political thriller and love story The Last Thing He Wanted was Didion's first novel in 12 years. Set in the same, shadowy Latin American world as several of her previous books, it is the story of a middle-aged woman who takes her father's place in a Central Intelligence Agency scheme gone awry. "Didion explores the hidden world behind the political looking glass, the world of conspiracies, assassinations, and quasi-military operations," observed David W. Madden in Magill Book Reviews.