The late novelist and screenwriter Sidney Sheldon remains one of the world's top bestselling authors, having sold more than 300 million copies of his books. He is also the only writer to have won an Oscar, a Tony, and an Edgar. The Guinness Book of World Records heralds him as the most translated author in the world.
Ashley Patterson is a computer graphics designer, her father an internationally known heart surgeon. Ashley seems to be living a comfortable life, but she is convinced that someone is following her. She finds her house ransacked and cigarettes around the house yet she doesn't smoke. Then suddenly she finds herself at the center of a murderous crime spree where five men are savagely stabbed and dismembered. How does she fit into this mystery and will the perpetrator come after her next? This tape starts out almost painfully slowly, but by the second tape listeners will be hanging on every word. Reader Morgan Fairchild also starts out slowly but eventually hits her stride, doing a fine job of keeping up with the characters and providing emotion in the appropriate places. Sheldon (The Stars Shine Down, Audio Reviews, LJ 11/1/92) fans will love this story as will those who like mysteries and psychological thrillers. For all public libraries.‘Danna Bell-Russel, Natl. Equal Justice Lib., American Univ., Washington, DC
Perennial bestseller Sheldon (The Best Laid Plans) doesn't get under the reader's skin here as he does at his best, even though he weaves together many of his time-tested elements‘childhood horror and its consequences; lust and murder as bedfellows; a pretty, hapless heroine; good men in the legal and medical professions trying to undo the wrongs done by others. Despite gory crime scene depictions, the old master, uncharacteristically, has left out the suspense and the layers of feeling. We finger the serial murderer all too quickly, just as we know before we know that Ashley's creepy physician father, Steven, abused her as a child. We never doubt that goodhearted lawyer David Singer will convince hostile judge Tessa Williams that, yes, multiple personality disorder happens, and that, morally and legally, it separates the doer from the deed. Nor is it any surprise that psychiatrist Gilbert Keller, spurred on by personal as well as professional longings, takes Allison apart and puts her back together the right way‘or does he? A prefatory sentence says the novel is based on real cases. Maybe so, but one wishes that the authentic details had been told with genuine passion. Literary Guild main selection. (Sept.)