Literary agent Mary Beth Conahan's life is terrific—until people start dying around her. First, her star author and her ex-husband are found dead together, then a second author perishes in a hotel room. Naturally, Mary Beth's a prime suspect in the eyes of cop Dan Rucker, but there's not enough evidence to arrest her—yet.

While Mary Beth tries to regroup—and avoid getting romantically entangled with Dan—an old friend appears, needing help. She also provides a link to Mary Beth's past that has surprising and devastating repercussions in the present.

THE LAST CHEERLEADER has a strong but overly complex plot. O'Brien's writing style is very accessible, however, and her heroine is someone most women can certainly identify with. (Dec., 400 pp., $6.50)

Reviewed by: 
Catherine Witmer