Taut and disturbing, The Halo Effect is psychological terror at its finest. Rose has a true gift for characterization, and the use of first-person narrative is particularly effective here.

Sex therapist Dr. Morgan Snow is very concerned when a patient, high-priced call girl Cleo Thane, suddenly vanishes. Morgan wonders if Cleo's disappearance is connected to the revelations made in her as-yet-unpublished memoirs, which Morgan is in the process of reading. Thinly veiled, powerful and famous men appear in the book, and all of them have excellent reasons for silencing Cleo. Equally distressing is the possibility that Cleo is the victim of a serial killer who's targeting prostitutes, a theory that Morgan doesn't fully embrace. Nor does the investigating officer, Noah Jordain.

(Jul., 352 pp., $12.95)
Reviewed by: 
Catherine Witmer