John Waltz, who recruits trainee executives for Pittsburgh Personnel Services, is 40-ish, Jewish, cynical, divorced, and thoroughly out of place in the very Christian little town of New Arcady--where he's visiting fundamentalist Witherspoon College. But, when placement director Pete Simon is promptly found murder-mutilated, Waltz is (for no very clear reason) enlisted to help in Lieut. Hershey's investigation--which runs a wavering course, from the arrest of a Greek handyman to the confession of a beautiful, neurotic student (followed shortly by the Greek's death). Through it all, Waltz finds time for a romance with Prof. Anne Christensen. And, with lots of wry asides about the up-tight New Arcadians, he is intuitively led to the culprit--and into a Had-I-But-Known trap of the corniest sort. Still, though motive and plotting are weak here, with far too much effortfully eccentric characterization, the style is fresh and funny--and Waltz is an appealingly offbeat sleuth/hero who may find better cases in the future.