Stranger in Paradise ), the Paradise, Mass., police chief almost effortlessly performs his laco"/>

Night and Day

Robert B. Parker, Author . Putnam $25.95 (304p) ISBN 978-0-399-15541-3

In bestseller Parker's fluffy eighth Jesse Stone novel (after Stranger in Paradise ), the Paradise, Mass., police chief almost effortlessly performs his laconic magic to restore order and right wrongs. When Betsy Ingersoll, the junior high school principal, decides to conduct a check of girls' undies before an eighth-grade dance, it may or may not have been a crime, but it certainly provokes a firestorm of protests. Then there's a Peeping Tom calling himself the Night Hawk, whose activities escalate from watching to home invasions. In addition, the legal activities of a group of adults calling themselves the Paradise Free Swingers are badly affecting two children. Jesse's ex-wife, Jenn, and his deputies, Molly Crane and “Suit” Simpson, lend support. With a few bold strokes, Parker sketches characters and plot, then uses long stretches of his trademark pithy dialogue to carry the story briskly forward. The result may not provide much of a meal, but it's certainly an enjoyable snack. (Feb.)

Reviewed on: 12/22/2008
Release date: 03/01/2009
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