SHE LOVES ME NOT
Rose Larrabee is a widow trying to raise two young children after losing the love of her life in a freak accident. She misses her husband but is determined to go on with life and be strong for her kids' sake. The last thing on Rose's mind is romance, but, apparently, she's caught the eye of a secret admirer. A series of seemingly simple gifts soon becomes frightening warnings. A madman is after Rose's heartliterallyand won't rest until he holds it in his hands.
While the premise of SHE LOVES ME NOT and the motivation of its crazed villain was original, the novel didn't live up to the storytelling power of Staub's previous thrillers. The large cast of secondary characters is cumbersome, and many are underdeveloped. Choppy writing and an anticlimactic ending diminish the feeling of suspense crucial to the novel's plot. (Feb., 416 pp., $6.99)