Whispers of Romance,
Threats of Death
One Woman's Treacherous Ordeal with a Savage, Seductive Unstoppable Serial Criminal — A True Story
by Carol Cook and Ted Schwarz
Dallas, Texas, a city so big, so bold and so exciting it embraces both the ideals and excesses of America's dreams, is supposed to be the perfect location to begin anew for Carol Bryan, who wants to open a business. It is a city where a woman can become whatever she wants—an entrepreneur, a corporate executive, an enviable success.
Carol, an attractive, intelligent divorcee whose daughters are just becoming independent, chooses a condominium complex in the "right" part of town—near Neiman-Marcus, the country club, million dollar homes and one of the popular mega-churches. On the surface, Dallas is an illustrious city. Yet no one speaks of the serial rapist on the loose. No one discusses the fact that the victims are all attractive, blond, intelligent, successful—just like Carol. And many live in or near the place she settles into…
Whispers of Romance, Threats of Death reveals a story so strange and shocking veteran police detectives call it "the weirdest twist" in their investigative careers.
Only a short time after moving in, Carol Bryan is stalked, attacked and raped at gunpoint in her new home by an ominous figure dressed in black, a ski mask covering his face. Later, while trying to recover from the trauma, she meets, then becomes a friend, business partner and later, the lover, of handsome, soft-spoken Gilbert Escobedo, who gallantly aids the police task force in searching for the violent criminal who victimized Carol and countless other women.
A successful businessman and devout church member, Gilbert brings his Bible when going along on spotter assignments on the police helicopter. Although driven to find the monster, what Carol and the police don't realize is that they are already well acquainted with the serial rapist. In fact, the wily felon they all seek is actually the police department's ride-along companion who has been toying with Carol all along, becoming her close friend, business partner and briefly, her lover, all the while continuing his ever more violent rape spree.
When Carol Bryan, "Victim 23," begins to have nightmares about the identity of her attacker, she fights back and confides her suspicions to a detective. Though the police now know who he is, they do not have the evidence to charge him. As betrayals compound and pieces of the puzzle finally fit together, Gilbert is unmasked and Carol ultimately helps the police bring the demented sociopath to justice.
A riveting true story in the tradition of The Stranger Beside Me, Whispers of Romance, Threats of Death reveals one woman's courage in the aftermath of a horrible crime and repeated betrayal at the hands of Texas' most charming, cunning criminal.
"A sensational, horrific crime. Quotes from the criminal's
later confession are woven into the narrative to creepy effect.
Cook's story is moving."
— Publishers Weekly
"A plainspoken testimony of one woman's courageous struggle
to overcome a violent assault."
"A compelling story."
— Midwest Book Review
*A McNaughton Book
*Paperback rights sold to Berkley Books
*Featured in the Globe, Bookazine, Woman's Own and Sunday Oklahoman
*Featured on the John Walsh Show
Carol (Bryan) Cook, an artist and poet, is a spokesperson for Victims Outreach, an organization that provides grief and trauma counseling to crime victims and the community. The mother of three daughters, she volunteers her time and donates a percentage of her art sales to Happy Hill Farm and Academy, a home for abused and needy children. She resides in Dallas, Texas with her husband.
Ted Schwarz is the best-selling author of more than 90 books and over 2,000 articles. His true crime writing includes Secret Weapons, The Hillside Strangler and other books frequently made into movies, including The Five of Me, Deadly Whispers and False Arrest. He and his family reside in Cleveland, Ohio.
A New Horizon Press Release
6 x 9, 320 pages
LC #2001089174, world rights
ISBN: 0-88282-217-9 (hc), $25.95