LADY KILLER

Meryl Sawyer, Author . Zebra $6.99 (416p) ISBN 978-0-8217-7213-3

Too tame to be a thriller but too lacking in romantic tension to be a romance, this newest offering from Sawyer (Every Waking Moment , etc.) is difficult to categorize. It is a novel of extremes, in one instance depicting the wild world of surfing in Kauai and in another following the intense hunt for a San Francisco serial killer who targets successful women. Although the transition in setting won't jar readers, the change in tone will. Herald newspaper columnist Jessica Crawford first meets Cole Rawlings in Kauai, where she learns that there are two types of orgasms—the sexual kind and the surfing kind. The two share a few frenzied moments experiencing both and then go their separate ways, only to meet up at the Herald , where Cole has taken a position as investigative reporter. Though the two are cold toward each other initially, the search for the serial killer brings them together. It's obvious Sawyer has done her homework—she throws in a number of superfluous details about notorious killers and the methodology of profiling—but her story falls short of riveting. An excess of information about Jessica's work, her friendships, her sad childhood, Cole's extremely sad childhood and the serial killer's hatred of "feminazis" bogs down the story. While some readers will appreciate the sharply drawn characters, others will grow impatient waiting for the suspense to heat up. (Apr.)

Reviewed on: 02/23/2004
Release date: 04/01/2004
Genre: Fiction
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