More overlapping cases for L.A.P.D.'s Luis Mendoza of Robbery/Homicide, whose wife Alison gives birth to a girl (they've already got twins) in this umpteenth volume of the series. As usual, victimized old folks are featured prominently: this time, in fact, they're being mercy-killed by a loving friend who can't bear to see them suffer: ""They deserved peaceful and dignified deaths--before this madness of the twentieth century caught up to them."" Otherwise, business as usual: two missing tots (one turns up dead, the other fine), a mysterious death in the past (some psychic touches here), a triple homicide among Los Angelenos of easy virtue, and the somewhat breezier case of an odd form of revenge: ruining someone's reputation. ""This is real life and we're real cops. . . . It's not that exciting a job, is it?"" No, it's not, but Shannon's fans will find this no less quick and busy than its 20-odd predecessors.