Dutton, Jul 2001, 23.95, 288 pp.
Kevin Kerney returns to New Mexico as the new Chief of police, but before he settles into his new job, he has a major homicide case. Ms. Phyllis Terrell, estranged wife of a US Ambassador is found dead in her home. Before the chief and his men dig too deep, the FBI, claiming national security, takes over the investigation.
While the FBI whitewash the case, across town at the College of Santa Fe, a second homicide occurs. The victim is a priest who was studying covert actions of the United States in South America. Seeing a clear link between the homicides and an obvious cover up by the Feds, Kerney and his most trusted staff go undercover to try to learn the truth.
Michael McGarrity has written a fast-paced police procedural that is so action-packed the audience will need an oxygen tank to take a breath. The government's covert operation seems plausible, but Kerney's counter-measure makes David look like a giant going up against Goliath. This improbability does not hurt an enjoyable UNDER THE COVER OF LAW because the protagonist is easy to like and identify with in this SST speedster. This thriller wrapped around a police procedural will keep fan interest from start to finish.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner