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Heroes don't come much darker than Brandon Carlyle -- once Hollywood's bad boy darling, the sexiest Jesus to ever hit the screen. Brandon's star died in a fiery highway crash. Now on parole for manslaughter, Brandon atones for his sins in the professional desert of Ticky Creek, Texas. Demons from a past too frightening to face, ever-present rage, and the twin temptations of suicide and alcoholic oblivion dog Brandon's every step. So does "Anticipating," Brendon's ultimate fan.

Book: Katherine Sutcliffe, Darkling I listenHeroines don't come more conniving than Alyson James. A tabloid reporter with an uncanny knack for catching Brandon at his very worst, Aly longs to turn "respectable." She sees an exclusive on Brandon in exile as her ticket to a byline in People, maybe even a stint on Entertainment Tonight.

That particular pipe dream comes crashing to earth the minute Aly and her camera fall out of a tree at Brandon's feet. But nothing stops Aly for long. She promptly offers to help Brandon write an autobiography to counter the self-serving lies of Brandon's mother. Aly might just get away with it too, just as long as nobody figures out that she was the photographer who broke the story of Brandon's alcoholism.

But Aly didn't count on a Ticky Creek woman obsessed with the past she and Brandon never shared. Or the woman's brother, Ticky Creek's sheriff -- a man so determined to send Brandon back to jail, he'll manufacture the crimes needed to get Brandon there.

Book: Katherine Sutcliffe, Desire and surrenderAnd Aly never knew about "Anticipating," or the frightening lengths "Anticipating" will go to protect Brandon from real and imagined foes -- and from anyone else who might get too close. No one is safe, because no one can withstand "Anticipating's" obsessive love. No one. But will the proud, hurting souls gathered in Ticky Creek grasp the key to their salvation before "Anticipating" destroys them all?

Katherine Sutcliffe doesn't cut herself an inch of slack in her first contemporary romantic suspense novel. Her characters grab your imagination and won't let go, while the plot thunders forward like a runaway horse -- or a car driven by a drunk towards the edge of cliff. You won't be able to turn the pages fast enough to keep up with your own dark anticipatings.

Jean Marie Ward

Click here to read the Crescent Blues interview with Katherine Sutcliffe

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