Morrow, Mar 2001, 24.00, 400 pp.
After twenty long years on the Seattle police force, J.P. Beaumont retires. The traumatic incident from last year on top of his ex-wife's death proves too much for J.P. Though he has a good job waiting for him, J.P. chaperones his step-grandfather and grandmother on an Alaskan cruise. The two octogenarians feel they need a much younger person to handle matters if something happens to one of them.
Though cruise ships are supposed to be relaxing, Beau becomes involved in one incident after another. He obtains proof that a patron, J.P.'s dining companion, was dumped overboard by persons unknown. The FBI asks J.P. to keep an eye on the participants of a medical conference because some of the guests might be targets of extremists. One of the individuals J.P. guards almost dies and an Alzheimer's patient goes overboard and dies on a train ride under suspicious circumstances. J.P. begins to seek the identity of the perpetrator before someone else dies.
J.P. Beaumont has entertained readers for years and the his latest starring role in BIRDS OF PREY still contain his sardonic humor, compassion to his elderly grandparents, and friendly courtesy to the ship's patrons who make him feel like a real hero. He easily returns to his police role when strange things occur and he is so good at it, the Feds enlist his assistance. The audience will want J.P. starring in another tale soon.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner