In His Sights: A True Story of Love and Obsession
by Kate Brennan
(HarperCollins, $24.95)

Author Kate Brennan was 44 when the stalking began. Then a college teacher living in a Midwestern city, she had just dumped a man with whom she had lived for two years. At first, his pleading phone calls were the worst of it. Then things got creepy. His friends started calling to report the places he’d seen her during the day. On a vacation in Maine, she was approached by a lone hiker who said, “I’ve been watching you.” Many nights when she returned to her apartment, she’d discover subtle evidence that “Paul” or one of his minions had broken in. A kitchen spoon would be lying in the middle of her bed. A bar of soap left downstairs would be sitting on an upstairs sink.

In His Sights chronicles nearly 14 years of such harassment, said Andy Newman in The New York Times. It’s written under a pseudonym, and the author had reason to be fearful, according to a detective who questioned Paul soon after he bought a house across the street. Even then, law enforcement was powerless to act. In fact, “one of the more disturbing truths to emerge in the book is that if you are determined to turn someone’s life upside down, and you have the money and connections to do it, there is not much anyone, including the police, can do to stop you.” The author changed her locks frequently. At one point, she moved 16 times in 16 months. She now lives in a small town far from Paul, but felt his reach once again recently, when her phone wire was mysteriously snipped.

Brennan claims she wrote the book in part to warn other women about the dangers of attaching themselves to emotionally damaged men, said Sherryl Connelly in the New York Daily News. Her own father was a violent alcoholic, and she believes that background explains her initial attraction to Paul. While In His Sights conveys Brennan’s fear so well “that we can feel it, too,” said David Pitt in Booklist, it also reveals an “inner strength.” This is a woman who has endured a form of “psychological terrorism” that apparently won’t end until her stalker’s death. And yet she carries on.