Bad Bird-Chris Knopf

Bad Bird

Chris Knopf

Minotaur, Feb 1 2011, $25.99

ISBN 9780312551247

Southampton. Long Island attorney Jackie Swaitkowski leans on a fence watching show horses run around in a field when she notices a small plane out of control.  She calls 911 as a metal camera case flies out of the pilot’s door.  The plane crashes moments later.  Jackie retrieves the case and removes a memory card from it as if the pilot was tossing that to her.  First responders from around the Hamptons arrive at the scene, but the Cessna female pilot is dead.

Having met a man claiming to be the husband of the pilot before he fled the crash scene, Jackie Googles for names of female local pilots and finds Eugenie Birkson owner of a Cessna taxi service; her husband Ed is a mechanic.  The memory card contains strange photos in which she recognizes some of the people in them including a few to close to home.  Ed hires Jackie to defend him when the National Transportation Safety Board ill mannered agent investigates.  Jackie soon learns the near fatal way that someone wants that memory card destroyed and is willing to kill again to achieve that objective.

The latest Swaitkowski thriller (see Short Squeeze) is an engaging tale that starts off with quite a bang and never slows down.  Once again (as Police officer Sullivan knows from his experiences with her) Jackie ignores the law when she takes the memory card.  Fast-paced throughout,  readers who enjoy their lawyers to be different will appreciate the pot smoking and hard drinking Swaitkowski.

Harriet Klausner

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