Once more Guy has a middle-class (or at least highly respectable) do-gooder black woman bring a troubled teenager info her well-ordered home. This time it's a boy, 16-year-old Imamu, who leaves his alcoholic mother to live with Ann Aimsley and her family after a court case involving a grocer's murder by Imamu's companion. His arrival sparks family conflict, and by unfortunate coincidence the Aimsley's eight-year-old daughter disappears the next day. In the crisis, the weakness of Ann's faith in Imamu is momentarily revealed; her husband's hostility toward the boy makes room for more sympathetic impulses; their formerly ambivalent daughter Gail, 18, comes to Imamu's defense and helps him search for the lost child; and a sexy middle-aged ""godmother"" confuses him with comeon signals. Though Guy's characterization is blunt, it is more than sufficient for the purposes of the plot and well integrated with the-considerable suspense the story builds toward the end. And though the culprit's identity and motivation are revealed in similarly heavy strokes, it is all in character, and at the same time totally unexpected.