Dismas Hardy fans will be pleased with this convoluted tale of marital infidelity, murder and cutting-edge technology starring Dismas' partner, Gina. Turning the pages is like peeling back the skin from
a grape -- each layer is sweeter than
the one before, and readers will
eagerly devour it.

Attorney Gina Roake returns to work after the murder of her fiance, and the first case she stumbles into is murder -- literally. Dr. Caryn Dryden's husband, writer Stuart Gorman, comes back from a weekend away to find his wife dead. Though signs point to suicide, Stuart's apparent lack of grief looks suspicious. Caryn had asked Stuart for a divorce, she may have been having an affair and Stuart stands to gain a lot of money.

But her death could be connected to her design of a new hip-replacement therapy. Or was Stuart, the recipient of death threats from an environmental loony, the intended victim? When his powerful politician friend -- and Gina's old lover -- asks her to take on the case, she must deal with an uncooperative client, his emotionally unbalanced daughter and what might be a huge corporate coverup. (DUTTON, Jan., 384 pp., $26.95)

Reviewed by: 
Pat Cooper