Impersonal Attractions
By Sarah Shankman
ISBN# 9781611875911

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Sammy


Sunshine, the brilliant blue Pacific, and the Golden Gate Bridge overhung with fog. The perfect backdrop for romance? Well…in San Francisco, good weather is easy to find; straight men are not. A San Francisco woman needs stamina, patience, cunning, and a plentiful supply of humor. Annie Tannenbaum—beautiful, blonde, divorced but hardly defeated—turns the relentless pursuit of Mr. Right to profit. She’s already gotten an advance on Meeting Cute, her book describing how perfect couples get together, for which she’s busy collecting data from the “personals” column, not to mention looking for responses to the personal ad she’s placed for herself.

Annie and her best friend Samantha—who looks as if she belongs on the cover of Vogue—love to commiserate over lunch, over dinner, over a forbidden dessert in the city’s trendy watering holes. But Samantha is hot on the trail of a very different kind of man as well. As the leading crime reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle, she is following the gruesome path of the sadistic rapist and murderer who is terrorizing women in San Francisco. The pursuit of love and the hunt for a killer become strangely intertwined as Samantha and Annie work together to trap the most frightening sex murderer since Thomas Harris’ The Red Dragon. They get close—perhaps too close—to finding him.

“Impersonal Attractions is slick, smart-mouthed, totally contemporary, and utterly beguiling. Sarah Shankman has a magic eye and ear for the urban idiom, a devilish sense of suspense, and a welcome gift for the absurd.”
Anne Rivers Siddons, author of Fox’s Earth and The House Next Door
“Dynamite! A whirlwind thriller—more than just a page-turner. The pages turn themselves! [Impersonal Attractions] reads like the Grand Prix. Way to go, Sarah Shankman!”
William Diehl, author of Chameleon and Sharky’s Machine (Goodreads)


This story was a DNF (Did not finish) for me. I personally could not get past all the racial slurs. The synopsis says “contemporary” the slurs that were being used  were not “contemporary” some were actually obscure,  depending where you were raised.

Yes, I understood it was supposed to be part of the times, however, one doesn’t get that from the synopsis. It is made to sound like a contemporary thriller. Perhaps adding something about the racial tensions of the time in the synopsis might help so the person reading this story isn’t blindsided by them.

Even prior to the overly abundant racial slurs being bandied about,  (sometimes less is more) the story was confusing. It was difficult to follow who was who and how they fit together.