Michaels, author of last year's Shattered Silk and a long list of others, is up to her old tricks: romantic suspense with an archaeological setting. Pro that she is, Michaels wastes no time in sinking us into the story, in this case that of young Haskell Maloney, who, on the eve of her wedding to a nice but boring lawyer, learns she carries the Tay-Sachs disease gene--a hereditary condition occurring chiefly among descendants of eastern European Jews. This strikes her as odd since neither her mother, a brilliant Egyptologist who died three months after her birth, nor her father, who was killed in the Vietnam War, had been the correct racial type to pass the Tay-Sachs gene on to her. So she sets off on an expedition to the Oriental Institute at the University of Chicago (where her mother went to school) to find out who her real father was, since her Aunt Jessie swears that her mom was her true mom. Pluck alone gets her a job working in the Victor Nazarian Museum of Egyptiana, where she meets several professors who were students with her mom, and seem likely father candidates. But only after old Victor Nazarian dies, and someone breaks into her cottage and then sets it afire, does the real story of her parentage unfold. As usual with Michaels' books, the mystery here is slight and contrived, but its trappings are A-1. With each new novel, the author's wit gleams a bit brighter and her cast of characters grows more captivatingly motley.