"J P Beaumont"-known as "Beau"-is a Seattle homicide cop with a private income ,a man whose job fills a need in him more emotional and psychological than monetary.While acting as technical adviser on a movie being shot near Lake Union,he stumbles across a body floating on the lake.Tha case is officially the provenance of the ultra ambitious cop "Paul Kramer"who insisits it is an accidental death;Beau is unpersuaded and continues to delve into the case.
The body is that of an ironworker-one of the people who put up iron girders on skyscrapers-and soon another ironworker is killed,by a fall on the job.
Beau's delving into the vase earns him official displeasure but he is vindicated when the deaths turn out to be murder and related one to the other.The bulk of the book concerns his unravelling of the case and it winds its way to a smooth but predictable climax.
These words sum up my view of the book0it is neat and tidy in execution but ,for me ,it never really took flight and transcended the functional level of being an agreeable time passer.
Beau is a character I have problems with mainly because in many respects he resembles the gifted amateur sleuth beloved of the "golden age "writers,and who just happens to be a cop.I could not swallow porsch driving cop with an apartment in Seattle's more upmarket area.
Polished and professional this will most likely be enjoyed by lovers of the "medium boiled "crime story