PERIL

Author(s): 

Sara Labriola is a suburban housewife with a crook for a father-in-law who likes to think of himself as a big-time gangster. Fed up with his actions and control over her husband, Tony, Sara escapes to New York to start a new life. Her exit pits father against son as Tony tries to find Sara before his father's henchmen do.

The search for Sara brings many different men together, offering the promise of redemption to one and a second chance to another. As the search continues, Tony's father appears to unravel. Along the way, readers meet many characters who have a direct impact on the search and discover these characters' demons and drives.

Cook's novel has the promise of a good suspense but falls short. In several sections, just when the story seems to be picking up steam, all suspense ebbs away, leaving the story empty and flat. Also, the organization is hard to follow. Each character has a few pages in his or her point of view, then the story shifts to another person. With so many POVs and not enough consecutive pages devoted to each character, it's hard to empathize and bond with them. (Feb., 320 pp., $23.95)

Reviewed by: 
Shannon Short