The Gold Coin

The Music Box

Run For Your Life

The Theft

I'll Be Watching You
by Andrea Kane
(Avon Books, $7.50, PG) ISBN 0-06-074131-7
Taylor Halstead is a counselor at a private school and a radio psychologist. When she gets home from work one day, Taylor expects to have the place to herself for the weekend. Taylor's cousin and roommate Stephanie is going to the Hamptons with her rich boyfriend Gordon Mallory. However, when Taylor gets home, Gordon is there ready to attack her. Gordon's brutal attempt at raping Taylor is interrupted by Stephanie's buzz from the lobby below. As he leaves Gordon threatens to return and finish what he started. His parting words are "I'll be watching you."

Several hours after reporting the attempted rape to the police, Taylor receives a call from the detective. Gordonís yacht en route to the Hamptons has exploded. None of the passengers, including Stephanie, survived.

Two months later, Taylor's learning to deal with the attempted rape and with the death of her cousin. That is until she receives an electronic Christmas card signed "I'll be watching you." A couple weeks later another e-card arrives signed the same way. After reporting it to the police and changing her email account, Taylor tries to put it behind her as the police are convinced Gordon set up the e-card deliveries to stalk Taylor long before his death.

While at the lawyer's office dealing with Stephanie's estate, Taylor runs into Jonathan Mallory - Gordon's identical twin brother. Lawyer Reed Weston comes to Taylor's aid as she's reeling from the shock and subsequent panic attack. Both Reed and Jonathan are attracted to Taylor and being to pursue her. Taylor starts to date Reed and clearly rejects Jonathan. However, Jonathan is used to getting whatever he wants, so he continues to pursue Taylor.

Now someone is making creepy telephone calls to Taylor. Who is watching her? Is it Jonathan? Is it the fan who calls Taylor's radio show everyday to ask her out? Can Taylor and Reed find out in time?

While the plot is bit contrived, Kane's ability to keep it suspenseful made Iíll Be Watching You an interesting read. Stalkers sending threatening emails and making phone calls are a reality in today's world. The element of realism makes the events happening to Taylor more gripping to the reader. Events that can occur in real life are scarier and more suspenseful than made up monsters (like Freddie Kruger).

Taylor's character is realistically portrayed. Taylor didn't make the typical stupid mistakes heroines make which drive this reader nuts. Nor was she a superwoman. Taylor's a strong, smart woman who understands the danger she's in and stands her ground.

The mystery of who is after Taylor is the focus of the book rather than the developing romance between Reed and Taylor. By the middle of the book, I knew who it was. The question that kept me guessing until the end was the how.

Iíll Be Watching You is a great choice for your beach bag this summer.

--Terry Lawrence

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