Lieutenant Norah Mulcahaney of New York's Fourth Homicide Division (Pushover, 1992, etc.) is trying to cope with a clutch of spiky problems. One is the murder of Ben Russell, shot to death in the studio where his fading rock-star brother Bo and his group, the Earth Shakers, were recording the new songs Bo hoped would put him back on top of the charts. Even more worrying is the investigation under way into Norah's killing of a would-be rapist in Central Park; a vanished gun; the enmity of one or more members of her squad; threatening, anonymous phone calls at home; and, above all, Norah's fear of a glitch in the adoption process that will at last bring her the child she has longed for. Norah solves the murder with a nervy, imaginative, not always convincing ploy. There are other, more satisfying endings as well in this mostly engrossing, no-frills procedural from a dependable veteran.