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Kathleen George. Dell Publishing Company, $6.99 (400pp) ISBN 978-0-440-23664-1

With its excess of mundane details and paucity of action, George's second novel (after Taken) is more likely to lull readers to sleep than keep them up until the wee hours of the morning. The Pittsburgh police are baffled by the murder of pediatrician and philanthropist Dan Ross. According to Dan's widow, Elizabeth, he had no enemies, which leaves detective Richard Christie with few leads. While Richard investigates the murky circumstances surrounding the long-ago death of Dan's best friend, Elizabeth seeks refuge in the arms of her new next door neighbor, Frank Razzi, a widower and part-time college professor. It's clear from the start that there's something shady about Frank, and the story's sole suspense lies in anticipating his motives and his connection to Dan's past. Although some readers will appreciate the rich character portraits George paints with painstaking detail, others will grow impatient waiting for the story to shift out of neutral.