Sandra Brown Analysis


(Masterpieces of Fiction, Detective and Mystery Edition)

After Sandra Brown’s suspense thriller Mirror Image (1991) made The New York Times best-seller list, she became one of America’s most prolific and popular authors, with a large and dedicated fan base. She has published more than sixty-five novels, many of them New York Times best sellers. Her works have been translated into more than thirty languages, and millions of copies of her novels have been sold in audio formats. Brown began her writing career as a romance novelist, but in the early 1990’s, her novels became increasingly more complex and suspense filled as she steadily moved into the mystery, crime, and thriller genres. It was her ability to combine two popular genres—romance and suspense—that not only placed her novels in the popular subgenre known as romantic suspense but also positioned her as one of America’s top mystery writers. Brown is highly regarded by fans for her engaging, suspenseful plots, which feature false leads, sinister motives, positioned and highly detailed characters, and unpredictable endings. The Crush (2002) became Brown’s fiftieth New York Times best seller. Her 1992 novel French Silk was made into an American Broadcasting Company (ABC) television film starring Susan Lucci in 1994.

Brown’s awards include the American Business Women’s Association’s Distinguished Circle of Success, the B’nai B’rith’s Distinguished Literary Achievement Award, the A. C. Greene Award, and the Romance Writers of America’s Lifetime Achievement Award.


(Masterpieces of Fiction, Detective and Mystery Edition)

Beardon, Michelle. “Sandra Brown: Suburban Mom and Prolific Bestseller.” Publishers Weekly 242, no. 28 (July 10, 1995): 39. Profile of Brown that looks at her life as well as her financially successful writing career.

Brown, Sandra. “The Risk of Seduction and the Seduction of Risk.” In Dangerous Men and Adventurous Women, edited by Jayne Ann Krentz. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1992. Best-selling author Brown discusses the psychology behind the romantic inclinations of her strong, independent female characters and their attraction to good-looking but ultimately dangerous men.

Machan, Dyan. “Romancing the Buck.” Forbes 159, no. 11 (June, 1997): 44-45. This article examines Sandra Brown’s decision to switch from the romance genre to the more substantial and far more profitable mystery, suspense, and thriller genres and the risk involved in this decision.

Rapp, Adrian, Lynda Dodgen, and Anne K. Kaler. “A Romance Writer Gets Away with Murder.” Clues: A Journal of Detection 21 (Spring/Summer, 2000): 17-21. Scholarly article that details how Brown integrated her talent for writing successful romances into the thriller, suspense, and mystery genres, a move that catapulted her into mainstream fiction as a best-selling author.

Raskin, Barbara. “Moguls in Pumps.” The New York Times Book Review, May 31, 1992, p. 739. Compares Brown’s best-selling French Silk with Ivana Trump’s For Love Alone (1992) and Judith Krantz’s Scruples Two (1992) to illustrate the rags-to-riches or poor-girl-makes-good theme employed in each novel.

Rice, Melinda. “How to Become a Best-Seller.” D Magazine—Dallas/Fort Worth 27, no. 6 (June 1, 2000): 80. A profile of the author that concentrates on how she went from being a romance writer to a writer of suspense and mystery and how she manages the business end of her work.