When beautiful, blond Sheila married the charming, handsome Blackthorne, she was convinced she had found her perfect soul mate, and helped him reach his goal of living the privileged life of the country club set. But behind Allen's smooth facade, she discovered a violent, controlling sociopath - a liar, a scam artist, a sexual deviant. When she finally fled with their two young daughters, she was skeletally thin, bruised, and beaten.
Although Sheila recovered, remarried, and was starting a new life and family, she still felt she was doomed. Joyously pregnant, she and her new husband expecting quadruplets, Sheila still feared Blackthorne, who had sworn to her he would monitor her every move and "every breath you take." And, in fact, Blackthorne inevitably tracked her down, as did her killer, who left her in a pool of blood marked by the tiny footprints of her two-year-old toddlers. The questions remained: Could the authorities ever link Sheila's murder to Blackthorne himself? Was his true obsession high-stakes golf and his extravagant pink mansion - or was it to destroy Sheila?
Following a trail of deception from Oregon and Hawaii to Texas and Florida, Ann Rule gained complete access to Sheila's family, friends, and neighbors, as well as to the detectives and prosecutors on the case. With Every Breath You Take, Ann Rule has written a heart-pounding account of obsession, revenge, and murder that will enthrall readers from beginning to end.
©2002 Ann Rule, All Rights Reserved; (P)2002 Simon & Schuster Inc., AUDIOWORKS Is an Imprint of Simon & Schuster Audio Division, Simon & Schuster Inc.
"As usual, Rule excels at painting psychologically perceptive portraits of all the characters in this stranger-than-fiction but nevertheless real-life drama." (Booklist)
This is my first encounter with the author, but it won't be my last.. I simply could not put it down. If you like true crime, then, in my opinion, you will enjoy this. on saturday afternoon. curl up in your favourite chair, with steaming mug of hot chocolate, and settle in, you won't regret it.
"Well worth it"
As an insatiable devotee to "Forensic Files," "City Confidential," and "American Justice," I could not wait to download and listen to Rule's "Breath." Though I was somewhat familiar with the subject matter, I found Rule's telling, complete with details not covered within any of the aforementioned television programs, entertaining, educational, and interesting. Her grasp of the criminal mind, and her ability to present it for the layman, are what drive the content of "Breath," and render it difficult to abandon once started. I strongly recommend both of the Rule books available at this site, and would encourage Audible to aquire those works outstanding.
"As always, Ann Rule provides a great story"
The full-length details of this story is my kind of book. I like the complete info that is given, Although the details were numerous, the writing makes it easy to follow. I like how she will 'remind' readers/listeners who each player is as the story goes. If a person is not spoke about for a while in the book, she will remind us who that person is, how they are related to the main character, etc.
Indeed. This was one Ann Rule story I was not familiar with.
Each character had its' own persona that was interesting and intriguing.The way they all weaved together was so odd.
About a week after finishing this book, I ran across a true crime show on the ID channel - it happened to be this story!! It has interviews with one of the daughters and I wished I would've tuned in earlier - I literally only caught the last 5 minutes of.
"Incredible story written by an awesome writer!"
Ann Rule has an incredible writing style that engages you from the start. Not many authors can do that, but her insight into each case plus her background in law enforcement give her a completely different view from any other writer.
"Always a winner with Ann Rule"
This book was excellent as are this author's other books. Ann Rule weaves the tale in such a way that you can't stop reading or listening. There is a good mix of police investigation facts, court room drama, and best of all the delving into the personalities of the real life characters.
A true crime veteran, Ann Rule has done it again. If you have never read after Ann Rule, you are in for an informative, interesting, fact filled, authentic ride no matter the book you choose. If you have never read true crime, her books are about as good as the genre gets. I put four stars on this volume only because she might have covered the subject just as well in about 80% of the space. That is certainly a matter of taste and is not said to minimize her good work at all.
"Not Her Best Work...."
I am a fan of Ms. Rule's. I am an even bigger fan of true crime stories. This story did not keep me interested enough in the characters, and offered too much insignificant information and background in the beginning.
Worth "reading". Well researched and presented. Did not like the "history" type style of the book.
But fans of the crime genre will like it.
"the story master does it again!"
Ann Rule knows how to tell a story. She amasses the facts and carefully organizes the details into a compelling, coherent tale that must be heard to the end. Even minor characters are memorable. Ann Rule's books are studies in human development and nature, what can go wrong in some people who still appear so attractive on the surface, and the extraordinary heroism of others, who also may appear ordinary. Her beat is the whole human circus. She is never sensationalizing or insensitive to human suffering, even when it ultimately produces monsters. The fascination is how hugely human beings can misread each other and how complex we are. Four stars only because it was an "open & shut case" compared to Green River, and no real surprises.
This book was wonderful; I had read it before by Dick Estell (The Radio Reader) but thoroughly enjoyed Blair Brown's narration of it. I especially thought having Ann Rule's intro and eppilog was a neat touch, because it helped me get to know her better. Even though it could be said that this book had an obvious end, it gave voice to everyone involved (especially Sheila) and, I think, some sort of closure for her family. This book was also unique in that the victim chose Ann before the book ever came out, as Ann explains in the beginning. I believe new insights are gained in reading this book.
"Ms. Rule - typical...excellence, that is"
I have read all Ms. Rule's books, and listened to this one, and have never been disappointed. She combines meticulous research, interviews and case files and weaves a story that pulls you into the world of the participants and doesn't let you go. I always come away feeling that I have walked in each character's shoes and understand the five "W"s - who, what, where, when and - most importantly - why.
This audio book has the additional pleasure of Blair Brown as narrator which is a particular treat as she helps us empathize with the victims. This isn't the best Ann Rule book - read the "Killer Beside Me" about Ted Bundy - but it's a close second. A definite must for any true crime buff. Highly recommended!
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