Forensic anthropologist T.J. McCloud is trapped in an unenviable position. Having worked for the U.N. as a consultant, T.J. is now faced with the prospect that his old friend and mentor Colonel Martin might be guilty of war crimes. T.J. attempts to duck the situation and buy time when he decides to investigate the discovery of bones on his brother's property. When it looks like he might have a 60-year-old murder mystery on his hands, T.J. seals off access to the property.

Hollywood producer Mara Simon is banking on a new pirate film to gain her freedom from her ex-husband, but her plans run smack into T.J.'s quarantine. In order to reach the cove where most of the filming will take place, Mara and her crew need access across T.J.'s murder scene. Since Mara and T.J. were childhood friends, Mara is confident he will oblige her. But T.J. is not about to budge, despite the fact that she has grown up into one very potent package.

The McCloud brothers are back in Patricia Rice's middle installment of her trilogy. Emotional baggage of various types makes the characters in this book engaging and compelling. (Mar., 337 pp., $6.99)

Reviewed by: 
Jill M. Smith