Meg O'Brien, Author . Mira $6.50 (400p) ISBN 978-1-55166-723-2

At a pace any locomotive would envy, O'Brien's newest romantic thriller (after Crimson Rain ) moves from the dead-end musings of its lovestruck narrator, literary agent Mary Beth Conahan, to writer Tony Blake, the client she's been infatuated with for three years. Barely a dozen pages into the book, Blake is found brutally murdered in a West Hollywood bedroom alongside Mary Beth's ex-husband. The weapon—a rare ivory Chinese dildo. When a duplicate dildo dispatches Mary Beth's hottest author, who's been holed up in a seedy motel working on what appears to be a threatening true crime tell-all, Mary Beth becomes the prime suspect. Her predicament worsens after her former best friend (the titular cheerleader) turns up needing a place to stay and someone to help her outwit her unsavory husband, who may be testing a harmful substance on their daughter, Jade. Before long, Mary Beth finds herself in mortal danger and in a romantic predicament, as two very viable love interests—investigating detective Dan Rucker and her ex-lover Patrick Llewellen—vie for her affection. Mary Beth's straightforward first-person narration won't snare readers like a siren's call, but the story's frenetic pacing and many convoluted twists will. (Dec.)

Reviewed on: 11/17/2003
Release date: 12/01/2003
Open Ebook - 400 pages - 978-1-4603-6378-2
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