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Bestseller Lashner's first stand-alone, a contemporary thriller, falls short of the standard set by his acclaimed Victor Carl series (A Killer's Kiss, etc.). The murder of Philadelphia attorney Laszlo Toth marks a turning point in the life of part-time bartender Kyle Byrne, whose late father was Toth's law partner for many years. The elder Byrne died more than a decade earlier under mysterious circumstances, and Kyle, his out-of-wedlock son, was bounced from his funeral-by Toth. Kyle's attendance at Toth's burial service attracts the attention of homicide detectives Henderson and Ramirez, the latter a good-looking woman who takes more than a professional interest in the suspect. Kyle is further rattled when he believes he sees his father watching him during a softball game. Since the reader learns the identity of Toth's killer early on, only the motive for the crime offers much mystery-and that turns out to be less than compelling. (Feb.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.