Author Miles Van Meter is on a book tour to promote his sensational bestseller Sleeping Beauty, a true-crime account of a deeply personal subject: the attack by a serial killer that left his twin sister, Casey, in a coma. Tonight the audience waits to hear Miles discuss recent developments in his sister's case -- unaware that pieces of this complex puzzle of violence, unknown even to the author, are about to be revealed. Six years earlier, life was much simpler for everyone involved, especially seventeen-year-old Ashley Spencer, a popular high school soccer star. Then one night an intruder entered Ashley's home and murdered her father and her best friend. Traumatized and suffering from a crippling sense of survivor guilt, Ashley is ready to give up on both soccer and life until help comes from an unexpected source -- a scholarship to an elite private school is extended to her by school dean Casey Van Meter. The school quickly becomes a haven for both Ashley and her mother, Terri. As Ashley regains her sense of self through the school's soccer program, Terri joins a writing group for adults led by Joshua Maxfield, a former literary wunderkind who has disappeared from the bestseller lists since his second book was panned by both critics and fans. Then tragedy strikes again and Ashley has to run for her life, unaware that the key to her survival is in the one book she's afraid to read -- Sleeping Beauty.
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by Phillip Margolin
by Richard Powers
by Sharon Kahn
by Phillip Hunter
by Phillip Hoose
"Suzanne Houston begins reading in a clear, lively voice but soon loses her way in cardboard characters, inane dialogue, and uninspired situations. However, when the bailiff raps his gavel at the start of the courtroom scene later in the book, Houston moves into high gear again, bringing the characters' voices to life with dialogue that is tense and spirited. The plot still remains problematic--the "shocking ending" isn't, a particularly heinous crime is predictable and lacks drama, and many obvious clues are overlooked in the trial. Yet Margolin's ability to pace the courtroom material, coupled with Houston's riveting reading of it, makes the last 100 pages worth every listening moment. K.A.T. (c) AudioFile 2004, Portland, Maine"
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