Laid-back workaphobic Boston lawyer Brady Coyne's weekend stay with his client Jeff Newton, scarred inside and out by an encounter with a Zambian leopard, turns from nuisance to nightmare when two men break into the house, scare Brady half to death, beat Jeff into a coma, kill his two guard dogs, and get away with seven solid-gold pre- Columbian leopards valued a $1.5 million. The police, convinced it was an inside job, lean on Brady, who leans in turn on Jeff's loyal, attractive housekeeper Lily Robbins--especially after he traces some collect phone calls to Jeff's number back to Montana, where her ex- husband Martin Lodi is doing time. Like a low-I.Q. Travis McGee, Brady takes off for West Yellowstone, ``where there's all kinds of clean fresh water full of trout,'' and has plenty of time to get bushwacked twice more before closing the case. Tapply (Dead Winter, Client Privilege, etc.) sketches in Brady's relationships with Jeff and Lily so deftly that you'll probably share, and forgive, his lack of interest in the slow-moving plot.